Not exactly relevant to the thread, but I got to drive an F50 a while back and I thought this an opportune time to write up a short review of my own...
I had the unbelievable opportunity a year ago to drive the one and only Ferrari F50. Before that opportunity I had always been a staunch believer than the F40 was the benchmark car which all Ferrari's would have to reach for. Boy was I wrong. The F50 is and more than likely always will be the greatest super car ever made.
It's gorgeous and ugly at the same time. Aesthetically sloppy at one angle yet aesthetically perfect at another. It is quite possibly the most polarizing car of all time. But one thing is for sure, the looks don't much matter after you've driven it.
Before the drive the owner gave me a fair warning- he told me that if I wrecked his car he would strangle me to death. Literally strangle me to death. As the original owner he had to jump through hoops and rings to purchase the F50. The buying process involved a mail-in questionnaire, a phone interview, copies of his Ferrari ownership records and finally signing a 'F50 ownership terms and conditions' lease agreement that limited who he could allow drive the car. All in all the purchase process took him 11 months. With that being said I wasn't even sure if I wanted to drive the car anymore out of fear of chipping the paint. But jesus christ, we're talking about the opportunity to drive an F50. Well worth the risk of being strangled to death.
Getting in to the car is like contorting your body to get in a small box- but once you're in it's surprisingly comfortable. The interior was designed to be efficient and ergonomic without any of the fluff. The dashboard consists of 6 air vents, a start button and gorgeously simplistic LCD instrument screen. Sitting in the driver seat it is immediately apparent that the F50 wasn't built to pick up the milk and shuffle around town. You're sitting in a purpose built man-eating super car. A car with Formula 1 genetics and an engine that wasn't even designed to be used in a street car.
I wasn't prepared for what followed. My legs were shaking in anticipation, palms were covered in a thin layer of sweat and eyes wide as dinner plates. The only thing going through my head was being strangled to death... and why Ferrari couldn't have put some cushion between the strip of leather and carbon fiber that I was sitting on. But alas, I turned the key.
Driving an F50 is like being abused by a big bully. The best analogy is imagining your spine being directly connected to the chassis. The car feels like an extension of your body. The acceleration is ferocious and violent, handling is instant and without any hesitation, the engine notes a symphony orchestra. You have to be either brave or crazy to push an F50 to the limit. I was both. I tore through the back roads of England like a bat out of hell with the owner sitting next to me smiling the entire time. For me this was a once in a lifetime experience. For him it was Tuesday.
I will admit, I didn't drive the car like a Michael Schumacher. I drove it like a mid-20's mildly ignorant car buff who had just popped his Ferrari cherry. I bounced off the rev-limited more times than I'd like to admit, I fishtailed here and there, I more than likely irreparably damaged his tires, I may have passed gas on his expensive leather seats under wide open throttle. I probably did a lot of things that anyone who has never driven a V12 super car shouldn't do. But I drove a Ferrari F50 and I will remember that day forever.
I'm going to see if I can find some.
I loved the horsepower switch in the cabin (basically a boost controller) and how this is the father of the ridiculous TT exotics of today.
The comments are so dumb. Apparently these kids haven't heard of this car, and call fake... only the 1000hp tt gallardos of today and since this guy wasn't beating the ever loving hell out of the ferrari, they insist it doesn't have 1000hp (actually 850hp, but still close) though that same car with modern turbos and modern standalone on the same boost would probably get alot closer to 1000.
Last edited by DannyLo; 11-01-2011 at 12:32 AM.