Ferrari KC23 Is a One-Off Design Marvel Based on a 488 Race Car

Ferrari is absolutely capable of building futuristic wonder cars if it wants to.

byLewin Day|
Ferrari News photo


Garden variety rich people buy their Ferraris off the rack. Those in a more obscene category of wealth will spend an entire political campaign's worth of money on a bespoke one-off from the Italian automaker. The Ferrari KC23 is one of the latter.

Far from being a concept car, the KC23 is a special one-off commission built with a focus on track performance. The design comes from Ferrari's Centro Stile studio, which is charged with drawing up the company's special projects. According to the automaker, the design was led by Flavio Manzoni, and built for "one very imaginative, passionate, and exacting customer."

The overall aesthetic seems to draw on a neo-80s vibe, with innovative elements like the drastic headlights and the rear-end "light blade" that glow from within while spanning the whole width of the car. Vents and ducts abound, while the rim-vented wheels simply look the business. Meanwhile, all the glass seamlessly blends with the surrounding panels, with no visible seals or framing. It also rocks a set of butterfly doors, just like the LaFerrari.

It's a look that seems to come from the same future the Hyundai N Vision 74 lives in. It wouldn't hurt for Ferrari to strike out further in this new direction with the next generation of its mainstream designs. The "Gold Mercury" four-layer paint also does wonders for the lines of the car.

The KC23 also features active aerodynamics which are all but hidden when the car is at a standstill. Power it up, and the KC23 transforms itself, flaring open huge air intakes and pop-out panels across the body. As a racer, it also naturally features a huge GT-style wing, though this can be removed if so desired.

The KC23 is based on the 488 GT3 Evo 2020, though with every exterior line redesigned in the process. Notably, it has become one of Ferrari's most successful track cars of all time. It boasts over 530 race wins and 119 championships to its name. Thus, it serves as a perfect platform for a custom track car. Unlike the 488 GT3, though, the KC23 is intended for non-competitive use, allowing more freedom in the design. Power isn't mentioned, but one would imagine the output to be at least the same 591 horsepower of the race car, if not higher due to a lack of racing restrictors.

Thus, inside, the KC23 is straight-up race car. The driver is faced with a wheel full of buttons and dials for controlling the finest details at the limit. Naturally, you get racing seats and harnesses to hold you in during high-G maneuvers, while there's a rollcage to protect you in the event you go just a little too ham.

It's quite typical for Ferrari to keep its Special Projects (SP) cars under wraps. However, the owner of the KC23 wanted to show off the collaboration to the world. In line with that ethos, the KC23 will appear in public at the Goodwood Festival of Speed this month, before spending a stint at the Ferrari Museum in Maranello. It's a great chance to see what is perhaps the most futuristic Ferrari ever built.

Got a tip? Let the author know:

Ferrari NewsNews by Brand