Ferrari LaFerrari, 2013 Geneva Motor Show
Hybrids, traditionally, have been synonymous with everything that isn't fun about driving—commutes, traffic, gas mileage, and penny pinching.
In recent years, though, they've taken on a high-performance sheen, thanks mostly to the introduction of hybrid sports cars where the electrical side of the equation is there to boost performance as well as aid economy.
A prime example is Ferrari’s [NYSE:RACE] LaFerrari, which features a pair of electric motors as well as a traditional V-12. The car is obscene in its perversion of hybrid tech, and we love it for it.
More Ferrari hybrids are coming. Beyond 2019, CEO and Chairman Sergio Marchionne, following the release of Ferrari's third-quarter financial results on Monday, said most and possibly all of the brand's cars will feature some form of electrification, Bloomberg reports. Don’t hold your breath for a pure, battery-powered Ferrari, though, as Marchionne still sees this as an obscenity, because part of a Ferrari’s magic is the noise it makes.
Rival McLaren is testing an electric car and Porsche has already committed to one. Depending on consumer preferences and the regulatory environment, Marchionne’s stance may eventually change. In the meantime, Ferrari will focus on hybrids.
There’s an additional incentive for Ferrari to launch more hybrids, beyond the performance and economy gains they bring. Ferrari escapes many of the CO2 limits larger automakers face due to its annual production numbers of less than 10,000 units. With hybrid technology, Ferrari will be able to lift production beyond this figure and still stay within CO2 limits.
Marchionne said Ferrari could end up delivering more than 10,000 cars annually in 2025, though he wouldn’t commit to this actually being a target. Ferrari is on track to deliver 8,000 cars in 2016 and is committed to lifting this to 9,000 cars in 2019.
Ferrari for years has limited its production to retain exclusivity but with the burden of maintaining its stock price since going public, the company is seeking growth. One strategy was to double down on expanding the brand beyond cars but Marchionne on Monday said Ferrari will focus on cars while slowing its expansion into other areas.