In Maranello, Italy in March of 1947 a racing driver and entrepreneur named Enzo Ferrari fired up the engine of the 125 S, the very first car to bear his now legendary name. It was the realization of Ferrari’s lifelong dream to build an exclusive race car for gentlemen drivers who demanded better than the very best. Now 70 years after the historic test drive, Ferrari, a true global icon, is celebrating its 70th anniversary in suitable style.
From that first 125 S all the way up to the marque’s $3.4 million LaFerrari Aperta hypercar, the “latest artwork of the Ferrari legacy,” the Ferrari name has stood for uncompromising quality, power, elegance, exclusivity and style. Throughout the year over 60 countries will host events to mark the 70-year milestone that will see cars from every year of Ferrari production take to the streets. Ferrari has chosen the concept of “Driven by Emotion” to express its ethos over seven decades.
The factory in Maranello continues to stun the world with feats of both engineering and design, while pioneering technological solutions that never fail to turn heads as well. The celebratory events will reach their peak the weekend of September 9th at Maranello, which will see the first “Cavalcade Classiche,” one of the world’s largest gatherings of classic Ferraris ever. To coincide with the goings-on there will also be an exhibition organized in conjunction with the Design Museum of London at the Ferrari Museum due to open in May.
Even if you don’t own a Ferrari, you can join in the celebrations via the marque’s new website dedicated to the occasion at www.70.ferrari.com. You should also pick up a copy of award-winning author, photographer, historian and Ferrari expert Dennis Adler’s gorgeous new bookFerrari: 70 Years, from Motorbooks. Adler's informative text is accompanied by gorgeous photography and supplemented by fascinating images from Ferrari's historic archive.
Of course the original 125S is included, as well as the versatile 340 in the 1950s and the stunning 250s and 275s of the 1960s to the Daytona in the ‘70s and the shocking F40 in 1987, leading the way to the hypercar era staring the Enzo and LaFerrari. The book also delves deeper in Enzo Ferrari's early career with Alfa-Romeo, now owned by Ferrari parent Fiat, before he launched his own company, unsatisfied with having to follow the instructions of others.
We recently celebrated Ferrari’s 70th in our own fashion with an epic drive of their latest mid-engined marvel, the 488 GTB, which we hereby nominate for Luxury Car of the Year. While Ferraris of the past have at times sacrificed some level of comfort in favor of sheer performance and sport handling, the 488 GTB is a perfectly balanced machine which allows you to dial in the level of dynamics you desire at any given time via the “manettino” switch on the steering wheel.
The 488 GTB—which stands for Gran Turismo Berlinetta—is the perfect distillation of every great car Ferrari has produced in the past 70 years, mated to the very latest technology. It’s name and styling are a tribute to another seminal model, the 308 GTB, which became an immediate icon and symbol of Ferrari’s new era when it first debuted 40 years ago. 40 years from now we’ll no doubt still be marveling at the marque of the prancing horse.