2013 Geneva Motor Show Unveils Ferrari’s New Supercar – LaFerrari

Ferrari is always on top in the supercar world and they now have reached out into more of the Formula 1 racing scene in producing a hybrid car that uses less fuel, emits fewer CO2 particles and check this out…it accelerates to 60 mph in less than 3 seconds.

The Ferrari LaFerrari obtains more power under braking or when the motor creates excess power to the battery by which is then transferred to 2 electric engines.  The first one gives a boost to the gas engine and the other one feeds the accessories. 

This supercar has something called the HY-KERS system which stands for hybrid kinetic energy recovery system.  The system runs in conjunction with the engine and never solo, categorizing it as a mild hybrid like the Civic and Malibu. 

The Ferrari LaFerrari has a couple of aliases, the F70 and the F150.  It was initially introduced at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show and then the Frankfurt Auto Show – the world’s 2 biggest automotive showcases.  The 2013 shows were showcasing high-performance, ‘green’, and mainstream cars for world markets.

How does KERS work, you ask?

This kind of technology is all about renewable energy – that in yesterday’s vehicles would be wasted.   So, for instance, the Toyota Prius is a good example of renewable energy because it uses this technology so that the vehicle only runs a mile or so on battery before the gas engine kicks in.  This KERS is additional power on top of the already high powered combustion engine creates (much like a turbocharger but more efficient).

A couple of interesting methods that are used to create this energy are:

  1. The spinning up of a flywheel while braking
  2. Transferring power to supercapacitors

Both of the methods work for about 10 seconds because of two reasons; either all of the storage systems are used up or because the sanctioning body limits the vehicle to a fixed amount of boost per lap.  The system then changes the energy and pushes it to a pair batteries that are bolted to the cars carbon fiber frame.  The first battery feeds the propulsion system and the other diverts power to the cars accessories, i.e. windshield wipers, A/C, audio system, etc.

Environmental Gains

The LaFerrari emits about 330g of CO2/km in the European emissions testing cycle, which is roughly about 10 percent less than other V12 Ferrari’s.  The development team says that this car isn’t exactly an active hybrid like the Prius because that is not the main goal of the vehicle at the moment. 

Cost of the Ferrari LaFerrari

The price is an estimated $1.3 million and there will only be about 499 units made.  The veteran clients of Ferrari get first dibs on the new supercar and get a nice discounted rate of $700k to continue to deliver the brand to enthusiasts instead of speculators. 

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