The Ferrari 599XX is a car designed for track use only and is not street legal, based on Ferrari 599 GTB.
The rev. The Ferrari 599XX limiter is raised to 9000 rpm, with the engine rated for 730 PS (540 kW; 720 hp) at 9000 rpm.
Weight is reduced by reducing the weight of the engine unit components, the use of composite materials, and the use of carbon-fiber body parts and brake pads. A new gearbox shift strategy is introduced to cut overall gear change time to 60 ms. Aerodynamics were retuned to give more downforce (280 kg (617 lb) at 200 km/h, 630 kg (1,389 lb) at 300 km/h). The car also includes 29/67 R19 front and 31/71 R19 rear tyres with 19 × 11J wheel rims at the front and 19 × 12J at the rear.
The car was unveiled at the 2009 Geneva Auto Show.
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Ferrari announced at the 2010 Beijing International Auto Show that the Ferrari 599XX had completed the Nordschleife circuit at the Nürburgring in a time of 6 minutes and 58.16 seconds – the second fastest time ever recorded for a production-derived sports car.
If ever there has existed a meaner, sleeker, dragon slayer of a GT racer, well, neither Ecclestone, Mosley, Lauren, nor Leno has clapped eyes on the thing.
Except for the roof and windshield, not much of the Ferrari 599XX is cannibalized from the all-aluminum Ferrari 599GTB Fiorano. All four fenders, for instance, feature F1-like aero “fences,” vertical panels behind which air is scooped out from each wheel well. To relieve heat and pressure, the hood likewise features nearly as many holes as Augusta. The winglets on the C-pillars—resembling Alfred E. Neuman’s ears—funnel air inward, forcing it to slide down the Lexan backlight, then along the ducktail trunklid, and finally over the carbon-fiber blade spoiler. And then there’s the huge underbody fairing and rear diffuser, whose center section is air permeable. Two electric fans mounted inside the trunk suck air through that permeable panel and then vent it through the holes previously occupied by taillights. The air is discarded in individual huffs and puffs (like a subwoofer stomping out rap music), which, we are told, detaches the wake from the rear of the car. This is apparently a good thing, according to the F1 engineers who designed it—along with the winglets—during hundreds of trial-and-error hours in Ferrari’s own wind tunnel. The fans automatically quit sucking underbody air at 155 mph, a speed that suggests the car is traveling in a straight line and thus needs no extra downforce. Speaking of which, all of this aero chicanery creates 617 pounds of downforce at 124 mph and 1389 pounds at 186 mph. For what started as a street car, that’s a bunch.
The cockpit is similarly all business, stripped to bare metal and encased in a roll cage. The dash is a piece of carbon fiber with a single LCD pod replacing all gauges, and LEDs embedded in the top of the steering wheel—as on the regular Ferrari 599XX—warn of the approaching 9000-rpm redline. The side windows are Lexan; the doors feel as if they weigh 13 ounces; and the back seat is replaced with a tangle of Aeroquip hoses and what might be the black box from an Airbus A300.
By race-car standards, visibility is superb in all directions, helped in part by skinny, elongated side-view mirrors that jut out like individual Martian antennae. The cockpit offers one lone—and unlikely—vestige of civility: It’s air conditioned.
As a result of all that carbon fiber, not to mention the myriad luxo accouterments that have been returned to the parts bin, the Ferrari 599XX is about 600 pounds lighter than a 3953-pound Ferrari 599GTB Fiorano you’d see idling down Rodeo Drive.
The 6.0-liter V-12 makes 720 horsepower and 506 pound-feet of torque, besting the Ferrari 599GTB’s output by 108 prancing horses and 58 pound-feet. Some of that newfound power accrues from upping the redline—9000 rpm instead of 8400—made possible through extra balancing, blueprinting, and sedulous massaging. There’s a new higher-flow carbon-fiber intake manifold, for instance; the pistons are graphite-coated; the cam lobes are polished to a Bulgari-quality fare-thee-well; mechanical tappets replace the hydraulic-istas; there’s a custom exhaust; and the crankshaft throws have a new aerodynamic profile.
The Ferrari 599XX ’s power-to-weight ratio is 4.7 pounds per horsepower, versus, say, the Bugatti Veyron’s 4.5. With telemetry as a witness, Ferrari test driver Raffaele De Simone spirited a Ferrari 599XX to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 2.9 seconds—without launch control. But here’s maybe the coolest thing about the V-12: Ferrari warrants it for 5000 kilometers (3107 miles), “which should be good for two years’ worth of racing,” says chief vehicle engineer Nicola Porciani. A racing engine with a warranty. Is that a first? Because of noise regs at some tracks, the exhaust is fitted with silencers. Sadly, they impose a somewhat blatty V-8 note rather than the expected V-12 Bates Motel shriek.
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