This limited-edition targa takes its inspiration from legendary 1960s Sports Prototypes..
On February 6th 1967, Ferrari pulled off one of the most spectacular feats in its entire history when it took the top three places at the 24 Hours of Daytona in the first round of that year’s International World Sports Car Championship. The three cars that shot past the chequered flag in that legendary side-by-side finish on Ford’s home turf – in first place a 330 P3/4, in second a 330 P4 and in third a 412 P – represented the pinnacle of development of the Ferrari 330 P3, a model that chief engineer Mauro Forghieri had significantly improved in each of the three racing car fundamentals: engine, chassis and aerodynamics. The 330 P3/4 perfectly encapsulated the spirit of the sports prototypes of the 1960s, a decade now considered the golden era of closed wheel racing and an enduring reference point for generations of engineers and designers.
The name of the new Icona evokes that legendary 1-2-3 finish and pays homage to the Ferrari sports prototypes that helped earn the marque its unparalleled motor sport status. The Daytona SP3 is a limited edition that joins the Icona series which debuted in 2018 with the Ferrari Monza SP1 and SP2.
The Daytona SP3’s design is a harmonious interplay of contrasts, sublimely sculptural, voluptuous surfaces alternating with the kind of sharper lines that revealed the burgeoning importance of aerodynamics in the design of racers such as the 330 P4, 350 Can-Am and 512 S. The bold choice of a ‘Targa’ body with a removable hard top was also inspired by the sports prototype world: consequently, the Daytona SP3 not only delivers exhilarating driving pleasure but also usable performance.
From a technical perspective, the Daytona SP3 takes its inspiration from the sophisticated engineering solutions already adopted in racing the 1960s: today as back then, maximum performance was achieved by working on the aforementioned three fundamental areas.
The Daytona SP3 sports a naturally-aspirated V12, mid-rear-mounted in typical racing car style. Undisputedly the most iconic of all Maranello’s engines, this power unit delivers 840 cv – making it the most powerful engine ever built by Ferrari – along with 697 Nm of torque and maximum revs of 9500 rpm.
The chassis is built entirely from composite materials using Formula 1 technologies that have not been seen in a road car since the LaFerrari, Maranello’s last supercar. The seat is an integral part of the chassis to reduce weight and guarantee the driver a driving position similar to that of a competition car.
Lastly, just like the cars that inspired it, the aerodynamic research and design focused on achieving maximum efficiency purely using passive aero solutions. Thanks to unprecedented features, such as chimneys that extract low-pressure air from the underbody, the Daytona SP3 is the most aerodynamically efficient car ever built by Ferrari without resorting to active aero devices. Because of the clever integration of these technical innovations, the car can accelerate from zero to 100km/h in 2.85s and from zero to 200km/h in just 7.4s: exhilarating performance, an extreme set-up, and the intoxicating V12 soundtrack deliver completely unparalleled driving pleasure.
Although inspired by the stylistic language of 1960s racing cars, the Daytona SP3 is clothed in very undeniably original, modern forms. Its sculptural power celebrates and interprets the sensual volumes of sports prototypes to wholly contemporary effect. It goes without saying that a design this ambitious demanded a meticulously planned and executed strategy from Chief Design Officer Flavio Manzoni and his Styling Centre team.
From the wraparound windscreen back, the Daytona SP3’s cabin looks like a dome set into a sensual sculpture with sinuous wings emerging boldly either side. The car’s overall balance is underscored by monolithic volumes that are a powerful articulation of the long-appreciated skills of Italian coachbuilding at its finest. The fluidity of its masses melds effortlessly with sharper surfaces, to produce the sense of effortless aesthetic balance that has long been a signature of Maranello’s design history.
The clean double-crested front wings are a nod to the sculptural elegance of past Ferrari sports prototypes of the likes of the 512 S, 712 Can-Am and 312 P. The shape of the wheelarches efficiently connotes the geometry of the flanks. At the front, they are structural and create a powerful link between wheel and well by not completely following the circular profile of the tyre. The rear flank swells out from the sylph-like waist giving rise to a powerful rear muscle that wraps around the front of the wheels, then tapers back towards the tail, lending a powerful dynamism to the three-quarter view.
Another key element is the butterfly doors, which have an air box integrated into them to channel air to the side-mounted radiators; the resulting sculptural forms give the doors a pronounced shoulder housing the air intake that is visually linked to the vertical cut of the windscreen. The pronounced surface of the doors, whose leading edge forms the rear of the front wheelarch, also helps to manage the airflow emerging from the front wheels. This surface treatment also closely recalls that of cars such as the 512 S which partly inspired the Daytona SP3’s stylistic code.
Even the Daytona SP3’s cockpit takes its inspiration from historic Ferraris such as the 330 P3/4, the 312 P and the 350 Can-Am. Starting with an idea of a high-performance chassis, the designers crafted a meticulously refined space that delivers the comfort and sophistication of a modern Grand Tourer whilst keeping the styling language quite minimalist. It retains the philosophy behind certain styling codes: the dash, for instance, is minimalist and functional yet also entirely contemporary in feel. The typical upholstered cushions that were directly attached to the chassis on sports prototypes have been transformed into modern seats integrated into the body, creating a seamless textural continuity with the surrounding trim.
The dashboard follows the same philosophy: here the Daytona SP3’s structure means that the trim extends all the way to the quarterlights, hugging the entire area connecting with the windscreen. The slender, taut dashboard seems almost to float within the upholstery. Its styling theme develops on two levels: the upper trimmed shell, which has a clean, sculptural look, is separated from the lower one with a clear textural and functional dividing line. All of the Human-Machine Interface (HMI) touch controls are clustered below this line.
The automaker has yet to unveil further specific regarding the car namely how many of this limited edition run will only be made available and the all important price. Watch this space for further updates...