Survival in today’s new car market is all about versatility. Porsche – renowned for dishing up sports cars for decades – finally managed to diversify with the Cayenne SUV and subsequently its Macan baby brother.
Jaguar has also expanded in a similar direction with the F-Pace SUV after eventually cracking the compact exec market with the 3 Series-sized XE, and by 2018, Lamborghini may finally sell a car taller than a hobbit with the genuinely terrifying Urus.
But before the end of the year, Ferrari will commence deliveries for this: the GTC4Lusso.
In all honesty, it’s a corner of the market that Ferrari has visited in the past. This four-seater grand tourer will replace the FF, which broke new ground for Ferrari in 2011 by introducing a four-wheel drive system whilst staying true to Ferrari’s naturally-aspirated roots.
The GTC4Lusso continues down the same path set out by the FF by shunning turbochargers and retaining the all-wheel drive. However, it tells its own story by introducing a rear-wheel steering system, which pushes the rear suspension against the bushes to gain a couple more degrees steering in either direction.
Who wants some numbers? Okay, the 6,262cc V12 engine – twinned to a seven-speed dual clutch transmission – can pump out 681bhp and up to 697Nm of torque, which is enough umph to hurtle you from a standstill to 62mph in 3.4 seconds. If you push it, you’ll eventually get up to 208mph, further unleashing that gurgling roar.
You don’t want to know about fuel economy (18.8mpg combined and 350g/km CO2 output if you do), but you may be curious what GTC4Lusso means.
I was and I can tell you, it means ‘Grand Turismo Coupe’, the number four signifies the all-wheel drive system, and ‘Lusso’ is Italian for ‘luxury’, but also a knowing nod to 1963’s 250 GT Lusso, one of the most revered and collectible Ferraris. The name is even less snappy when you unravel it like that, and there’s no explaining why Ferrari insists on writing it all as one word without any spaces.
With a larger car to play with, Ferrari say they have seized the opportunity to make it their most versatile (we’re back on that again) car yet, claiming that it was designed to deliver the pleasure of Ferrari in any place and at any time, all year round, regardless of the weather.
Aside from exceptional power, they say it also provides superb comfort with ample space for four, as well as sporty elegance and impeccable detailing.
Initial reviews suggest they’ve done a fairly decent job, with the general consensus agreeing that while it handles slippery roads better than the FF ever did, it doesn’t quite take the corners as convincingly as its predecessor on dry surfaces.
I guess we’ll find out when it goes on sale in December for £240,430. That’s right, the best part of a quarter of a million…
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