When it comes to sports cars, Ferrari cars have long been among the most desired by car enthusiasts. That’s why a buzz was created when the company announced the Ferrari Enzo, coming in with a price tag of just under $700,000. Still, since just under 400 units were produced, the Enzo has sold at auctions for well over $1,000,000.
Developed in 2002 using Formula One technology, the Ferrari Enzo was named after the company founder and was established to commemorate Ferrari’s first formula one title of the new millennium. The Enzo was designed Ken Okuyama who formerly headed up Japanese Pininfarina. The car was initially introduced at the 2002 Motor Show in Paris. Pininfarina wanted a car that was distinctly different from the GTO, F40 and F50. The Enzo is a mid-engine vehicle that has variable valve timing and dual overhead cams.
The Enzo is an extreme super sports car and the racing capabilities are hard for an enthusiast to resist. But while the Enzo may be the car of dreams, actually owning one may be a dream that never comes through. There were only 399 manufactured.
Actually in the beginning only 349 cars were going to be built. These all sold before production began and after many requests, Ferrari agreed to produce an additional fifty units. Before the Enzo was unveiled at the Paris Motor Show, the car was flown from Italy to California to the set of Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle. Actress Demi Moore got to drive the car on the beach. Then it was flown to Paris for the Motor Show.
Because of that, it’s not very likely that you’ll see the Enzo driving down the freeway. More than likely owners have them safely stored away in their garages until they can transport the car to wide open spaces with no other cars around.
With a semi-automatic transmission, the Enzo uses paddles to control an automated shifting and clutch mechanism. LED lights on the steering wheel tell the driver when to change gears. The Enzo has 19-inch wheels and 15-inch Brembo disc brakes. Tires are the Bridgestone Potenza Scuderia RE050A tires. The Enzo can go from 0 to 60 mph in 3.14 seconds and is able to reach 100 mph in 6.6 seconds.
Motor Trend Classic named the Enzo as their number four pick on their list of “Greatest Ferraris of all time,” and in 2005, Sports Car International named the Enzo Ferrari number three on their list of Top Sports Cars of the 2000s. But it hasn’t all been favorable. Bloomberg Businessweek named the Enzo one of the “Fifty Ugliest Cars of the Past 50 Years,” saying the curves and angles were too flashy.
Enzo Ferrari who founded the company always felt that the design of road cars should come from the racers. To him it was logical that the company’s latest creation should carry his name. So Ferrari set out to develop the Enzo as an integrated design system for extreme performance. In the Enzo, style came from function as Pininfarina wanted to create an uncompromising car that would break away from the approach used for the GTO, F40 and F50 that preceded it.
The main goal in the Enzo project was to reduce gear change times down to 150 milliseconds. To do this the F1 gear levers are made of carbon, with an optimized shape and size. They have been made symmetrical by transferring the direction indicator controls to the steering wheel spokes. The maximize safety; the car is equipped with a system to measure tire pressure through special sensors inside the wheel rims. These sensors transmit a signal that is transmitted to the instrument panel.
Of his creations and of the Ferrari, Enzo Ferrari once said “The Ferrari is a dream – people dream of owning this special vehicle and for most people it will remain a dream apart from for those lucky few.”