It is not every day that one sees a bright red car swiftly gliding through the roads, leaving behind an air of aristocracy and the echo of its engine. In 1929 Enzo Ferrari founded Scuderia Ferrari as a racing team that still competes in Formula One.
The racing division Alpha Romeo had become a big hit until Enzo Ferrari branched off in the late 1930s to start his own line of racing cars. Tipo 815 was the first Ferrari car produced, based on a Fiat platform. During the second world war, the Ferrari factory in Maranello was bombed, post which the first road car was launched in 1947 in Ferrari’s name.
The nickname ‘The prancing horse’ was given to the Ferrari team in Formula One due to their logo. The origin of the iconic prancing horse logo came from the fighter plane of Francesco Baracca, an airman during the first world war. His mother countess Paulina told Enzo Ferrari to use the prancing horse on his cars because it would bring him good luck. Ever since the black horse engraved in the canary yellow background has been the trademark for Ferrari.
Enzo Ferrari once said, “My motors have a soul”. Anyone who has driven a Ferrari will tell you that its speciality lies in the experience. Ferrari terms this as ‘emotion to drive’, their main philosophy. Their idea is despite their combination of power and drivability, one should feel the thrill of driving it and should step out of the car with a smile.
In an interview, the chief marketing and commercial officer, Enrico Galliera said, “If you want to be fast, you can drive a dragster. If you want to have a lot of horsepower, you just have to put some additional elements in the turbo engine. What is difficult is to combine power with drivability. The specificity of Ferrari is not just about speed, it is to give the driver the pleasure to drive the car that he can bring to the limit.”
Roughly 7000 Ferrari cars are produced annually, most of which are supplied to the middle eastern countries as a high number of collectors reside in these regions who have immense knowledge about Ferrari. Money is not all that it takes to own a Ferrari. From about a year before the release date, people from all over the world send in their applications that are thoroughly screened and filtered.
Many people are rejected despite having the money, position or power to own a Ferrari. The company has a list of clients, comprising 200 people, who are given the priority to the latest cars. Contrary to popular belief that Ferrari employees can own a Ferrari, Galliera said, “The philosophy is that with such limited production and clients waiting so long to get their car, it’s not nice if the car is delivered to employees. It is clients first”. The dream of its many employees owning a Ferrari will remain a dream.
Ferrari respects its clients and always keeps their requirements on top of their priority list. Their idea is to consistently deliver a good product that will increase the demand for their cars, they believe the key is to maintain a ratio between demand and delivery. Each line released always has something better, be it the engine, the colour or speed, Ferrari focuses on adding an element of surprise and innovation.
The idea of each car being unique led to the introduction of the Tailor-made programme which allows clients to work with Maranello designers who cater to their car as per their specifications. This helps in developing a deeper connection with the clients and a better understanding of how the idea and expectations of Ferrari change with time.
Expansion beyond cars
Though Ferrari is well known for their sports cars that race in Formula One, and the employment of race technology in streetcars, they have branched into various other fields over the years. The Ferrari World theme park is located in Abu Dhabi and a second one is coming up in Spain and the third in China. Ferrari also launched a product range of cologne, clothing, watches and other accessories. Italy, the home to Ferrari, houses the Ferrari museum that contains vintage and new models of both road and race cars. Ferrari is also the only automobile manufacturer that has its own race track just for testing cars.
The brand is currently working on a five-year plan and new models. The 70th anniversary of Ferrari launched the ‘limited, collectors only’ line and the flagship LaFerrari. Ferrari has no plans of launching SUVs as they believe they will not be able to combine power and drivability and deliver the emotions that they intend to with a car that big.
Over the last decade Ferrari incorporated the use of biofuels into their cars, the F430 spider runs on ethanol. Hybrid versions of certain flagships, called the ‘HY-KERS concept’ have also been introduced into the market.