Ferrari (NYSE:RACE) Expect a ‘FUV’ Not an SUV
Ferrari (NYSE:RACE) said it plans to expand its iconic brand beyond 2-door Supercars.
The Big Q: Just how far?
Ferrari designers are working on something that it expected to be revealed within the next 2 years.
Given the nature of the iconic Italian automaker, this must be, will be done with great care.
Brand extension has been been successfully managed by Porsche, Bentley and Maserati, all of which are producing vehicles to meet buyer’s appetite for crossover SUVs.
But Ferrari is different, as it makes supercars. It is a tradition stretching back to Y 1947. And that is why, today, Ferrari is the most powerful automotive brand in the world, according to Brand Finance, a London-based brand valuation consulting firm.
Anything Ferrari makes will still be a “sports cars” said Enrico Galliera, Ferrari’s Chief Marketing Officer. Do not expect to take a Ferrari off-road unless it’s onto a racetrack, according to his description.
“Sports car means that your driving position is this,” Mr. Galliera said, leaning back in an office chair and holding his hands in the air in front of his chest as if grasping a steering wheel. He was imitating the deeply reclined driver’s seat position in a Ferrari.
“Sports car means that the height from the ground is this one,” he said indicating something a few inches from the ground. Then he raised his hand up higher. “It cannot be like this one,” he said.
That higher ride height is a defining characteristic of a crossover SUV like a Maserati Levante or Lamborghini Urus. The extra inches are helpful off road but compromise a car’s cornering ability on twisty paved roads.
That is not a compromise Ferrari will make, Mr. Galliera declared.
So far, Ferrari’s least traditional sports car is the GTC4Lusso. It is a 2-door car, but with full sized back seats roomy enough for adults and some cargo space inside.
It’s still classically Ferrari in that it has a soundful 680 horsepower V12 engine under its long, sloping hood. It can also be had with a turbocharged V8.
Ferrari’s extraordinarily close relationship with its core customers will be Key to pulling off this next move, said Alex Haigh, director of Brand Finance.
“Ferrari is incredibly close to its customers,” he said. “So, it will not be making models where they have not checked with their customers.”
That is how the Maranello outfit ensures that whatever it makes next will click with clienti.”
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