The 2014 Ferrari F12 Berlinetta is Ferrari's mid-level car. It represents a new level of engineering effort from a car company that makes some of the most advanced cars in the world. It features a 6.3L V12 engine that makes 731 horsepower and a 7-speed dual-clutch transmission. The body is made of advanced set of alloy metals designed to make the chassis extremely rigid and lightweight. Standard magnetic fluid-filled shocks allow the suspension to react instantly to minute changes in the roadway.
The body features revolutionary styling intended to not only look dramatic and exciting, but also produce downforce through the use of channels that go through the body. Active Brake Cooling automatically opens ducts to direct air onto the brakes only when the operating temperatures reach a certain level. Ferrari claims the F12 Berlinetta is the most aerodynamically efficient Ferrari ever.
Standard 20-inch alloy wheels are wrapped with Michelin Pilot SuperSport tires. The headlights are HID and the brakelights are full LED. The wipers are rain-sensing. A standard navigation system comes in the form of a 6.5-inch touchscreen display, which is integrated into the audio system. It features 2 USB ports, iPhone integration and steering-wheel controls.
Inside, the F12 is typical Ferrari luxury, with dual-zone climate control, leather seats and remote keyless entry. Front and side-mounted airbags as well as front and rear parking sensors are also included.
When it comes to engine placement, Enzo Ferrari famously said "The horse doesn't push the cart, it pulls it." In other words: the proper place for the engine in a sports car is in the front, not the back. That mantra would take years for his engineers to finally overcome and start putting engines behind the driver, considered a more optimal place to reduce weight on the front and enable quicker turning. Still, Ferrari (the company) has always maintained a fondness for cars with engines up there ahead of the driver. That fondness is doubly grand when we're talking about a big V12 slung between the front wheels.
Of all the cars Ferrari has built with this configuration, the F12 Berlinetta is the fastest. In fact, before La Ferrari came along, the F12 was the fastest production car the company had ever made. With 730 horsepower on tap, a relatively trim curb weight of 3,362 pounds, and seating for just two, the F12 is a rocketship disguised as a grand tourer. It's brutally quick when it wants to be, yet mostly civilized when it needs to be.
The word "berlinetta" means "little limousine" in Italian, but memories of bachelor parties and prom will likely be far from your mind the first time you see the F12 in the flesh. It has the same long, low, dramatic silhouette as its predecessor, the 599 GTB. That shape looks amazing from outside, and just as good from within, where you're situated low and gazing out over that long nose, looking between the two flares on the hood, making room for 20-inch front wheels.
The Good The Ferrari F12 Berlinetta offers breathtaking performance in a beautifully sculpted exterior. The attention to detail is legendary, and the JBL sound system offers great performance
The Bad Infotainment options are predictably sparse, and road noise can be a bit grating.
The Bottom Line The Ferrari F12 Berlinetta is a stunning car that is a thrill to drive fast and a pleasure to drive slow. It's lacking a bit when it comes to interior tech, but with Ferrari's CarPlay partnership, hopefully that will be changing in future iterations.
The multiyear partnership could produce some seriously attractive products.
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