Ferrari Chief Engineer Joins BMW

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Roberto Fedeli

Roberto Fedeli

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Ferrari chief engineer Roberto Fedeli, the man who headed the development of some of the world’s best performance cars like the LaFerrari, F12 Berlinetta and 458 Italia, will soon be working for BMW. The German automaker has confirmed Fedeli will join it in November but hasn’t revealed what role he will fill.

Fedeli is a Ferrari veteran, having joined the firm in 1988 and having led its engineering department since 2007. While news of his departure comes just days before Luca di Montezemolo is set to retire, a Ferrari spokesman has revealed to Automotive News (subscription required) that Fedeli’s decision has nothing to do with the exit of the longstanding Ferrari chairman and incoming reign of Sergio Marchionne.

As mentioned, it’s not clear what role Fedeli will fill at BMW. The most likely scenario would see him end up at the M division although sources have revealed that a position at Rolls-Royce is also possible. Note, only weeks ago, BMW confirmed that the former head of Audi’s quattro performance division, Franciscus van Meel, will run the M division after current chief Friedrich Nitschke retires at the end of the year.

Perhaps the latest moves are a signal BMW is finally serious about launching a high-performance sports car to take on the likes of the Audi R8 and Mercedes-AMG GT. After all, the automaker will soon have the men in charge of development of the R8 and Laferrari among its ranks.

Replacing Fedeli at Ferrari will be former Porsche engineer Michael Leiters, who joined the Italian firm back in January.

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