The Ferrari LaFerrai is the pinnacle of automotive performance. It is a supercar with few, if any rivals, featuring a 6.3-liter V12 engine, in a hybrid powertrain, putting out a combined 949 horsepower. So why is there a LaFerrari with a V6 running around a test track in Italy?
There is a great deal of speculation on this, but if you watch the video below, you can see a heavily camouflaged LaFerrari making the rounds at a Ferrari test track. The engine sounds far from anything like a V12 or even V8. Also, there is a large air intake protruding from the roof of the hypercar:
This has led the folks over at Road & Track to conclude that this is a turbocharged V6 being tested for the next season of Formula 1. The governing body of F1 has enacted new engine rules, pushing out the 2.4-liter V8 engine in favor of a 1.6-liter turbocharged V6 engine. The new powertrain would also incorporate an energy recovery system that could add electric power boosts throughout the race, like the KERS system currently in F1 vehicles.
So what is it doing under the bonnet of a $1.5 million hypercar? Well, Formula 1 cars don’t exactly grow on trees, and with the new engine rules, there are likely also new weight and downforce restrictions, meaning that the car that this engine would power is not exactly ready yet. So while Ferrari perfects their new F1 chassis, this extremely strange sounding race engine will continue to blister along, to the delight of our ears.
And just remember– advancements made in racing eventually trickle down to road cars. So the prospect of a turbocharged, V6 Ferrari road car in the future is not so far fetched.