Everybody knows Ferrari’s FXX supercar is a testbed for the carmaker’s upcoming technologies, both for the racetrack and the road, but the prototype’s 6.2L V12 engine may soon be a thing of the past. Ferrari is considering using a more efficient twin-turbo V8 engine for the successor to the Enzo, due to hit the streets in 2012.

Ferrari used a similar powerplant for its F40, arguably the world’s first supercar, but the world has since moved on to large displacement V10 and V12 engines. Speaking with AutoWeek, Ferrari GT technical director Roberto Fedeli confirmed engineers were investigating both V12 and V8 options for the new supercar, explaining that Ferrari was no longer interested in power wars.

“For us, it’s not just a question of power. We have to choose whether we maintain the shape of the weight-to-power curve of the Enzo with more power or with less weight,” Fedeli said. “If we do a [1,000kg (2200lb)] car with the same weight-to-power ratio as the FXX, then you want to save the maximum weight. The best packaging for that kind of car is an eight-cylinder turbo. That would have to be an all-new V8.”

“The FXX is to test some innovations that we have in our minds [for the next car],” said Fedeli. “We have one to one and a half years to choose the solution before we start the car.”