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Old 6th October 2008, 12:20   #1
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Default Nott to 60mph in 3.8 seconds - Ferrari F-139 driven - as requested

Nott to 60 in 3.8 seconds and in 7.4 seconds it reaches 100mph. And, within a few more seconds you will easily be past 200mph. All this is good. But, what if I said this isnít alone a fast car, but it is spacious, luxurious and comfortable and some feel it is good looking too. Will you then mind waiting for almost 24 months for a delivery of this car costing AUD 600,000?

I am talking about the F-139, better known the Ferrari 599 GTB Fiorano. There is arrogance within and around the prancing horseís stable. Go to book or merely enquire about the car and the manager or sales executive claim with the nose high in air that a Ferrari is worth waiting for at least 18 months. They reason the strategy for exclusivity. They further will tell you that people who have a lot of money and obsessed with having the best, the fastest in this case suffer from brand immunity and thus want nothing but a Ferrari.

Look at the car and you know it is influenced by American-muscle car styling. The long bonnet with pronounced haunches makes it very American. This car replaces the 575M Maranello and is designed by Pininfarina under the guidance of Frank Stephenson. Still, I say it looks American.

The 599 carries the 6 litre, V-12 from the Enzo but is refined a bit only to make it 1.5 seconds slower than the Enzo. But, since it is 150kilos lighter than the 575, it is undoubtedly quicker. Well, when I say refined, I mean a few components were compacted due to the space restrictions in the front-engine installation. Apart from this it has got magnetic suspension and an intelligent traction control system that senses you are in danger before you even know. The leather interior is quite comfy and has a very good looking interior. There is also a boot space that can fit your luggage. This then is perhaps one of those very few supercar manufacturers that manage to make a fast car which is luxurious and roomy too. Long distance drives with some luggage is very much possible in this Ferrari, oh yes. So, this is worth the wait, isnít it?

This 612hp, 608nm producing 6-litre, V12 engine has an all-aluminium chassis for less weight but more strength. It also has no turbo. With around 160kgs of downforce, there is seldom anything could go wrong, unless you are tipsy. The cornering ability in this frankly big car amazes you. This is due to the proper weight-distribution: the engine may be mounted in the front but is behind the front axle and the gear-box is at the back. You choose from a 6-speed manual gearbox and a F1-superfast automatic mounted on the steering column.

The paddle-shift gear box is so quick that it can disengage the clutch, pick the gear and reengage the clutch as you blink. The LEDs on the steering wheel prompts you to change gears too. That is marvellous. The F1 madness doesnít end there. There is an acronym called LC Ė yeah!!! Launch Control which is strictly advised for confident drivers on dry road conditions. They also add that you must hold the brake, rev up to 5000rpm and then release the brake. They completely forgot to warn the driver to hold on tight. Every time you step into any Ferrari, you find yourself miles away from any other supercar, even a faster one. It is just so technically advanced and so... perfect.

But, if you mistreat this car, that is if you forcibly drift or even power slide it, it may just not respond like you want it to. It is like a female, this car. More specifically, a female you are hitting on. You donít forcibly want to make love because that may ruin the relationship. You respect, tickle, tease and make her feel like a woman and love her. In the 599, you need to do the same. You do a powerslide by slowly taking the corner faster and faster and then slightly rudely and then mistreat it and then enjoy going sideways. In other words, if you are even slightly successful, the ending is great. But, if you get it wrong, oh dear!!!

But, then there is hardly a moment when you can commit a mistake. The car is well-balanced and even when the traction control is off, the stiffened suspension doesnít leave the tarmac. Let me put it this way: Many people ask me as an actor (part-time) that what is the facial expression of been lucky? If I did all the above written stuff in an LP640, I would have been at the edge of the cliff where I am almost going to tip down to death but manage to escape it. Thatís the expression of luck. But, then there is also a chance I donít make it. This is the feeling you will not get in a 599. This is a quick car that punishes you if you are not concentrating. But, the punishment isnít death.

You may be thinking considering its 50 years of racing pedigree, the 599 is nothing short of perfect. Yes, it is perfect. But, just for the same reason, I am not impressed.

Most supercars have issues with rear visibility; this doesnít. Most supercars have air-cons that donít function as it is supposed to; this one works. The equipment that you get in the Ferrari is like any other normal road car - bi-xenon headlights with wipers, electric heater, sports wing mirrors, automatic lights and wipers, a tyre-pressure and temperature monitoring system, electric sports seats with electro-pneumatic bolsters and a radio/CD player with MP3 compatibility, a compact flash-drive, a voice control, Bluetooth connectivity. But, you get much, much more power than a normal road car, now thatís for sure. This is all good but what about the essence of having, or even driving a Ferrari?

The looks, pardon me, but I personally think the F430 was the last pretty Ferrari ever made. Many car journalists agree to this. The American looking Ferrari kinda scares me. Italian styling has always been the best looking car designs in the world. I mean, how often you have heard car aficionados go ďWowĒ as anyone advertises a car as ďAmerican designĒ. Truly, I havenít heard. The shift of style norms is only the first reason of dislike.

The car is so perfect that there is very little nervousness felt by the car as you drive it. It, I am afraid, is not much fun to drive. There is not much drama, there is no drama at all. Yes, it fits the category of a practical sports car, but a supercar? I am not so sure. Yes, it fits into the engine norms required by a supercar but is less exciting to drive. Perhaps it is because of this factor that Ferrari themselves classify the 599 as a GT Ė Gran Turismo flagship model that does 4.7kms/litre. And, I completely agree to that.

PS: This an old review posted due to request. So, kindly re-check the price-tag if interested in buying.

(Images clicked in L.A. auto show)
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Old 6th October 2008, 18:33   #2
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I would still buy one in Red if I ever won the lottery!! Ferrari V12 GT's are something else altogether!

Good review, was fun to read!
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Old 6th October 2008, 19:18   #3
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Are you happen to be an auto journalist? I almost felt like I am reading review in an auto magazine
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Old 6th October 2008, 19:52   #4
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Brilliant review man. Truely proffesional kinds

damn even i want to try out the Ferrari .
Keys Please
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Old 6th October 2008, 20:13   #5
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Lovely review; especially the 7th para
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Old 6th October 2008, 20:47   #6
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bro,you have all the qualities to write car reviews for any famous car magazines.Lovely review boss.
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Old 8th October 2008, 03:08   #7
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Hey all, honestly, we didn't expect such a response for a sports car review. Our Lamborghini review in the past was slapped to the corner, haha. Well, those were the initial days in this great forum.

@iraghava - Thanks for reading and appreciating. Yes, hope you win a lottery and buy yourself one. We shall visit you for another TD, haha.

@RX135 - Oh, that is a compliment. Thanks for reading and appreciating. Allow us to put it this way. We aren't car journalists but car reviewers.

There is a hint of automotive politics to bear with while in the automotive journalism profession. We strictly want to be devoid of that and so we review cars as a second volunteering job.

We put our thoughts on paper in a more formal style of writing and submit it to car companies requesting them to make certain changes in their respective models to make them better.

But, yes sure, we aspire to officially publish our reviews in magazines. As everything new starts from the scratch, we thought it would be wise to share our thoughts within car communities/forums such as this one. Even the greatest car journalists/reviewers of today had a hard time trying to make themselves known.

@abhinav.gupta88 - Thanks for reading and appreciating. To what address shall I courier the red keys? Haha.

@jkdas - Thanks for reading and appreciating. The 7th para, yes, the experience is similar.

@shivaprasad - Thanks for reading and appreciating. Yes, we hope to be recognised sooner or later.
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Old 8th October 2008, 15:57   #8
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heck. i wish these ferrari guys open a showroom in india just for super cars.
and very nice report. I liked it
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Old 8th October 2008, 18:57   #9
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Great review..You are lucky enough to drive the 599GTB. I didnt know it was called the F139 until I saw this post. Thanks.
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Old 8th October 2008, 19:28   #10
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Quote:
But, if you mistreat this car, that is if you forcibly drift or even power slide it, it may just not respond like you want it to. It is like a female, this car. More specifically, a female you are hitting on. You donít forcibly want to make love because that may ruin the relationship. You respect, tickle, tease and make her feel like a woman and love her. In the 599, you need to do the same. You do a powerslide by slowly taking the corner faster and faster and then slightly rudely and then mistreat it and then enjoy going sideways. In other words, if you are even slightly successful, the ending is great. But, if you get it wrong, oh dear!!!
For a moment I was wondering whether I was reading a car review or what!
Neat one!

Quote:
Italian styling has always been the best looking car designs in the world
Absolutely. The american designs seem to lack that subtlety/grace.
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Old 11th October 2008, 02:18   #11
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Hey all, Thanks for reading and appreciating.

@TheHorse - Hope they do open an outlet for the Indians.

@vivekji05 - Yes, we included the factory project name in the review for our readers' knowledge.

@sridharaps - Yes, the experience is similar. Hence, we thought it was worth a mention to give our readers the real essence of driving this machine.

Truly written, American designs may be quite muscular but lack "subtlety/grace".
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Old 11th October 2008, 17:28   #12
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The pics and the review left me drooling!

Last edited by BenjiRoss : 11th October 2008 at 17:32. Reason: typo
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Old 12th October 2008, 02:35   #13
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@BenjiRoss - Hey there, Ferraris are irresistible as they are a synonym for exclusivity, passion and speed. Thanks for reading and appreciating.
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