Last Sunday the inhabitants of Beijing were treated to an unusual
but spectacular sight: a rolling procession of 34 Ferrari and Maserati
vehicles through the city. Their Chinese owners had gathered at
the local showroom on occasion of the tenth anniversary of Ferrari’s
The city’s main thoroughfare was closed to traffic to allow
the parade to pass by before the cars lined up in the shadow of
the ‘Great Hall of the People’ – the colossal
seat of the Chinese parliament. Behind the wheel of the lead car
- a yellow 360 Modena owned by a Hong Kong businessman – was
Piero Ferrari. He was in Beijing for the event along with other
representatives from the Maranello management team.
The stunning backdrop made an ideal setting in which the local
and international media could film and interview the participants.
The curiosity of the vibrant crowd was caught up in the swirling
reds of the Parliament and the traditional paper kites that seem
to always adorn this most famous piazza in all China.
After the official welcome, breakfast was taken in the hall normally
reserved for government affairs and political meetings. The procession
then filed away towards the hotel in which the afternoon press conference
was to be held.
Piero Ferrari and the Commercial Director of Ferrari, Mario Micheli,
spoke on the importance to the Group of the Chinese market at a
time in which the country was in rapid economic development. The
actual number of Ferraris circulating in China is around 85 (as
Ferrari Granturismo have a limited production run) a figure, though,
destined to rise thanks to the boom in popularity for Maranello
After the introduction of the first Ferrari into China in 1993,
the official importer delivered 5-6 cars per year to Chinese clients.
This number rose to 18 in 2002 and is predicted to reach 30 in 2003.