The Ferrari Owners’ Club
of Great Britain

Ferrari’s 70th Anniversary Gets Underway

13-03-2017

The 125 S and the Aperta outside the historic Factory gates

 

This past Sunday, 70 years ago, on March 12 1947, Enzo Ferrari fired up the 125 S, the first car to bear his name. That test-drive on the streets of Maranello marked the start of modern Ferrari history. The then-modest factory quickly grew into one of the great internationally-renowned icons. Now, exactly 70 years later, on March 12 2017, Ferrari launches its official celebrations for this milestone anniversary.

To coincide with the official start of the celebrations and to commemorate the events of 70 years ago, Ferrari is also releasing a video featuring a re-enactment of the first 12-cylinder to sport the Cavallino Rampante on its bonnet, the 125 S, driving through the factory gates on Via Abetone Inferiore and, in doing so, symbolically passing the baton of the Ferrari legacy to the LaFerrari Aperta.

The 125 S was the first car to sport the Ferrari badge. Its 12-cylinder engine was designed by Gioacchino Colombo with Giuseppe Busso and Luigi Bazzi also contributing to the project. On March 12 1947, the 125 S, still an unbodied steel rolling chassis, roared to life for the first time and the great Ferrari adventure began. Two months later, on May 11 1947, the car made its track debut at the Piacenza Circuit. At the wheel of the 125 S (the S referring to its sports car-type bodywork) was Franco Cortese. Enzo Ferrari dubbed this maiden outing as “a promising failure” after the car was forced to pull up with a fuel pump problem whilst leading the race. However, that moment of failure was short-lived as just nine days later on May 20, Franco Cortese drove the 125 S to victory in the Rome Grand Prix, completing the 40 laps of the circuit and the 137 kilometres of the race at an average speed of 88.5 km/h. This was the first of six victories the 125 S delivered in 1947, the most notable of which was the Parma Grand Prix with Tazio Nuvolari doing the driving.

Maranello’s latest supercar, the LaFerrari Aperta,  effortlessly combines extraordinary performance with the unique exhilaration of open-top driving. It is equipped with the same hybrid power unit as the coupé: an 800 cv 6,262cc V12 engine (specific power output of 128 cv/l, compression ratio 13.5:1) coupled with a 120 kW electric motor for a total power output of 963 cv.

The anniversary celebrations culminate in Maranello on the weekend of September 9 and 10, but will also be flanked by other initiatives paying homage to Cavallino Rampante history, not least special exhibitions and the first “Cavalcade Classiche”.