Published on September 10th, 2019 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez0
Ferrari 812 GTS, from 0-100km/h in under 3 seconds topless
Exactly 50 years on from the debut of the last spider in the Ferrari range to sport a front-mounted V12, the Ferrari 812 GTS hails a triumphant return for a model type that has played a pivotal role in the marque’s history since its foundation.
The Ferrari V12 spider story features manyiconic models and began in 1948 with the 166 MM, an authentic thoroughbredcompetition GT that won the two most prestigious endurance races in the worldin 1949: the Mille Miglia and the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
The last in that long lineage was the 1969365 GTS4, also known as the Daytona Spider because of Ferrari’s legendaryvictory in the 1967 24 Hours of Daytona when two works 330 P4s and theNART-entered 412 P took the chequered flag side-by-side to occupy the top threeplaces.
The front-mounted V12 architecture has notbeen used in a Ferrari series-production spider since the 365 GTS4. That said,four special series limited editions have been launched: the 550 BarchettaPininfarina in 2000, the Superamerica in 2005, the SA Aperta in 2010 and, mostrecently, the F60 America of which just 10 were built to celebrate Ferrari’s60th year on the American market in 2014.
Like its historic predecessors, the 812 GTSsets a new benchmark in terms of performance and exclusivity. SportingFerrari’s majestic 800 cv V12, it is not merely the most powerful productionspider on the market, but also the most versatile, thanks to its retractablehard top, a unique feature in this segment which also guarantees a larger bootcapacity.
The retractable hard top (RHT), which opensin just 14 seconds at speeds of up to 45 km/h, does not impinge upon theinterior dimensions, thus maintaining the donor car’s roomy cockpit. Theelectric rear screen, which acts as a wind-stop, makes the car truly useablewith the top down while, with the top up, it can be left open to allowoccupants to continue to luxuriate in the naturally-aspirated V12’s uniquesoundtrack.
The Ferrari 812 GTS is the spider versionof the 812 Superfast, from which it takes both its specifications andperformance, most notably the power unit which, thanks to its ability tounleash a massive 800 cv at 8500 rpm, is the most powerful engine in its class.718 Nm of torque guarantees impressive acceleration virtually on a par withthat of the 812 Superfast while the heady 8900 rpm rev limit means that sportydriving is undiminished.
As on the 812 Superfast, these performancelevels were achieved in part by optimising the engine design and in part byinnovations, such as the use of a 350 bar direct injection system, and thecontrol system for the variable geometry inlet tracts, developed onnaturally-aspirated F1 engines. These systems allowed the increase indisplacement from 6.2 to 6.5 litres to be exploited to maximise power outputwhilst retaining excellent pick-up even at low revs.
The high pressure injection system alsoimproves nebulisation of the injected fuel thus dramatically reducing theamount of particulates emitted when the catalytic converter is warming up, and thefitment of a Gasoline Particulate Filter (GPF) together with the Stop&StartOn the Move strategy, which cuts and restart the engine while the car is on themove, ensures the engine complies with all emissions regulations.
Particular attention was also paid tocalibrating the Manettino settings to enhance the engine’s potential and thesensation of extreme power delivered by the car. That said, the driver willalways be able to easily and confidently dose the massive torque available withthe accelerator pedal, thanks to smooth, progressive power delivery at allengine speeds.
The shape of the torque curve reveals thattorque distribution was not sacrificed to boost power. A significant 80% ofmaximum torque is available at just 3500 rpm, improving both flexibility andpick-up at lower revs.
The shape of the power curve, which risesconstantly all the way to the maximum revs of 8500 rpm, and the rapidity withwhich engine speed increases, thanks to low inertia, give occupants the feelingof boundless power and acceleration. The latter sensation comes courtesy of theoverall increase in maximum power output and the optimisation of theaforementioned power curve between 6500 and 8900 rpm, which maximises theaverage horse power exploitable for press-on track driving when engine revs arekept consistently high.
The dual-clutch transmission’s gear-shiftstrategies enhance the car’s sportiness. When the Manettino is in sportiersettings, both up- and down-shift times have been significantly cut and thetransition time has been optimised to enhance the driver experience. Combinedwith the shortened gear ratios, these modifications, mean that occupants willinstantly feel that the car’s response to the throttle.
The geometry of the exhaust system wasevolved to increase and balance the sound from the engine and tailpipes, withthe aim of accentuating the car’s extremely sporty character with the roofdown.
Exhaust-wise, prevalence was given tocombustion order harmonics by modifying the geometry of the centre extensionpipes. All the pipes in the 6-in-1 exhaust manifold to the monolithic catalyticconverter are of equal-length and this optimises the sound by givingpredominance to the first-order combustion harmonics. The result is afull-bodied V12 sound in the cabin in all kinds of driving but which isparticularly appreciable when the roof is open.
Designed by the Ferrari Styling Centre andbased on the 812 Superfast, the 812 GTS echoes the formal language andproportions of Ferrari’s front-engined V12 without altering either its exteriordimensions or interior space and comfort, so it represents the perfect marriageof sportiness and elegance. From the side view the 812 GTS has a fastbacksleekness: a two-box design with a high tail reminiscent of the glorious 365GTB4 (Daytona) of 1968.
The draped design of the flanks visuallyshortens the tail and is characterised by sharply slanted crease lines andimpressively muscular wheelarches that imbue it with the power and aggressionwarranted by its imposing V12.
On the spider version of the 812 Superfast,the entire rear of the car – roof, tonneau cover and luggage compartment – hasbeen redesigned. The idea was to lend the car a new blend of sleekness andbalance, thanks to two buttresses beneath which the roof movement mechanism isstowed. The buttresses were designed to visually embody a sense of forwardthrust and lend the side windows a signature look that would set the spiderapart from the berlinetta. When the top is dropped, the roof panels disappearbeneath the aforementioned tonneau cover.
From a stylistic perspective, the rearwheelarch has lost the 812 Superfast’s characteristic aerodynamic by-pass. Theabsence of this duct has been compensated for, however, by reconfiguring therear diffuser which now has an additional flap.
The new Ferrari 812 GTS also features anew, highly sculptural and model-specific multi-spoke forged wheel. A choice ofthree versions will be offered: diamond-finish, liquid silver and Grigio Scuro.
Aerodynamically, the 812 GTS posed two mainchallenges for the Ferrari designers: how to guarantee the same performance asthe coupé version with the top up and, at the same time, ensure maximumpassenger comfort with the roof down.
In terms of pure aerodynamic performance,the retractable hard top and its stowage compartment required that the rear ofthe car be modified. Thanks to meticulous resculpting of the tonneau coversurfaces and, most importantly, the integration of a triplane wing into reardiffuser to create efficient suction (and thus downforce) from the underbody,the aerodynamicists were able to compensate for the downforce lost by theremoval of the 812 Superfast’s rear wheelarch by-pass duct, the air intake ofwhich was behind the quarterlight.
Drag, on the other hand, was cut by usingthe air vents on top of the rear flank to efficiently channel excess pressurebuild-up out of the wheel well.
Meticulously detailed work went intoguaranteeing an excellent standard of comfort on-board with the top down. Therewas huge focus on minimising both turbulence inside the cabin and aerodynamicnoise to ensure occupants could converse undisturbed even at high speeds.
As with the LaFerrari Aperta, two smallL-shaped flaps on the upper corners of the windscreen generate a coherentconcentrated vortex that creates outwash in the velocity field immediatelyabove the rear screen, thereby avoiding excess pressure behind the occupants’heads.
In this area, the aerodynamicists createdan aerodynamic passage in the front trim of the two buttresses that fair in theseats, and topped it with an aerofoil which channels the airflow striking thetrim into the tonneau zone at the rear, thus facilitating both venting ofpressure in the cabin and recompression of the separation bubble downstreamfrom the wind stop which in turn benefits aerodynamic efficiency and stabilisesthe flow.
The aim in developing the 812 GTS was toretain the exhilarating feeling of speed and power delivered by the berlinettaversion in terms of accelerating, response times and agility.
The Ferrari 812 GTS is equipped with all ofthe 812 Superfast’s new generation components and control systems and, like it,delivers impressive handling. It sports Electric Power Steering (EPS) which, inline with Ferrari tradition, is used to fully exploit the potential of the carin terms of performance by integrating it with all of the electronic vehicledynamics controls, including Version 5.0 of Ferrari’s patented SSC. Another ofthe integrated systems is the Virtual Short Wheelbase 2.0 system (PCV), whichhas been further evolved based on experience gained since its debut on theF12tdf.
The following high performance driverassistance features are also featured:
Ferrari Peak Performance (FPP): whencornering, the steering wheel torque will provide the driver with an indicationthat the car is getting closer to its limit of grip, helping the control ofthat dynamic state:
Ferrari Power Oversteer (FPO) – in the caseof oversteer, most frequently induced while powering out of corners, thesteering wheel torque will give the driver feedback to give steering wheelinputs that are coherent with realigning the car correctly
Optimised calibration of the car’smagnetorheological dampers mean its elastic set-up is the same as theberlinetta version’s despite the 75kg increase in weight caused bystrengthening work on the chassis.
Consequently, its overall performancelevels are very close to those of the berlinetta, with 0-100 km/h accelerationin under 3 seconds and 0-200 km/h in just 8.3 seconds. The Ferrari 812 GTS’smaximum speed is the same as the berlinetta’s: 340 km/h.
7 YEARS MAINTENANCE
Ferrari’s unparalleled quality standardsand increasing focus on client service underpin the extended seven-yearmaintenance programme offered with the Ferrari 812 GTS. Available across theentire Ferrari range, the programme covers all regular maintenance for thefirst seven years of the car’s life. This scheduled maintenance is an exclusiveservice that allows clients the certainty that their car is being kept at peakperformance and safety over the years. This very special service is alsoavailable to owners buying pre-owned Ferraris.
Regular maintenance (at intervals of either20,000 km or once a year with no mileage restrictions), original spares andmeticulous checks by staff trained directly at the Ferrari Training Centre inMaranello using the most modern diagnostic tools are just some of theadvantages of the Genuine Maintenance Programme. The service is available onall markets worldwide and from all Dealerships on the Official DealershipNetwork.
The Genuine Maintenance programme furtherextends the range of after-sales services offered by Ferrari to satisfy clientswishing to preserve the performance and excellence that are the signatures ofall cars built at the factory in Maranello which has always been synonymouswith leading-edge technology and sportiness.
Type: V12 – 65°
Overall displacement: 6496 cc
Bore and stroke: 94×78 mm
Maximum power output: 588 kW (800 cv) at8500 rpm
Maximum torque: 718 Nm at 7000 rpm
Specific power output: 123 cv/l
Max. engine speed: 8.900 rpm
Compression ratio: 13.6:1
Length: 4693 mm
Width: 1971 mm
Height: 1276 mm
Wheelbase: 2720 mm
Front track: 1672 mm
Rear track: 1645 mm
Dry weight: 1600 kg
Weight distribution: 47% front- 53% rear
Boot capacity: 210-liters
Fuel tank capacity: 92-liters
Front: 275/35 ZR 20″ 10″ J
Rear: 315/35 ZR 20″ 11.5″ J
Front :398x223x38 mm
Rear: 360x233x32 mm
Transmission and gearbox: 7-speeddual-clutch gearbox
Electronic controls: EPS, PCV 2.0, E-Diff3,F1-Trac, ABS/EBD with Ferrari Pre-Fill, FrS SCM-E, SSC 5.0
0-100 km/h: <3.0 sec
0-200 km/h: 8.3 sec
Max. speed: >340 km/h