Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Ferrari 512 BB - design icon and supercar

The Ferrari 512 BB and its predecessor 365 GT 4 BB were true design icons. Despite being very much behind Lamborghini adopting the mid engine scheme the car was quite a success. "BB" stands for Berlinetta Boxer but the engine actually wasn't a boxer design but a V-12 with an angle of 180 degrees. Ferrari built 387 365 GT4 BBs, recognizable because of the six exhaust pipes, 929 512 BBs and 1'007 BBIs between 1973 and 1981/82. Power output was always claimed to be around 340/360 HP depending on the way measured and the honesty.
What made the car special was the fact that you basically could unfold it (see second picture). For a 70ies sportscar the BB was quite heavy with more than 1'500 kg. And it felt like this. Best driving speed was in the range between 130 and 200 km/h and on the highway. This was clearly not a car built for the race track of the alps. The seating position was quite okay and even the visibility was quite good for a mid engine car. The engine of course was spectacular and so was the noise it produced, especially the carburetor versions 365 GT4 BB and 512 BB. Fuel consumption was impressive and you knew very soon why the petrol tank was so large. I loved the sound and the look of the car, but didn't fully enjoy the driving. That's why I sold it and swapped it against a 246 GT which clearly was a much more engaging car to drive. But the design of the 512 BB was really spot on, thanks to Pininfarina.

1 comment:

Kathie Americanmusclecar said...

This post is much impressive and images are perfect Ferrari 512 BB