Ferrari recently showed off its new Laboratorio Technologico 599XX experimental car based on the regular 599 GTB Fiorano, and while we all wished the wild concept would eventually enter production, the chances of actually buying one are next to nil except maybe for a few lucky people enlisted as Ferrari client test drivers.

However, a tamer version of the car, while still aimed at well-heeled track enthusiasts, is going to be launched later in the year--and this one will actually be road-legal.

The new car will revive the most hallowed of Ferrari badges: GTO--the first time those three letters will have been used since the 288 GTO ended production almost a quarter of a century ago.

Similar in theory to the F430 Scuderia and the 360 Challenge Stradale before that, the hardcore version of the 599 GTB has been captured here for the first time testing in and around the streets of Maranello. Visually, the car will look similar to the Laboratorio Technologico 599XX but not quite as extreme. Clear differences between the new GTO and standard GTB Fiorano are the blacked-out roof, new bumpers and side skirts and the huge rear diffuser.

The 599’s venerable 6.0-liter V-12 is expected to be pumped up to around 700 horsepower for application in the GTO, and this is to be accompanied by an extensive weight-saving program shedding up to 150 pounds, as well as a host of aerodynamic aids.

Production will almost certainly be limited, with numbers likely to hover around the 500 mark, and the most likely reveal date will be the 2010 Geneva Motor Show next week.