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Why do sports cars need to exist? If someone asks you, I would recommend you to try the thrill of a sports car. Moreover, I would like to inform you that in the sports car we become musicians playing music, explorers carving roads in the mountains and comets on the roads. For a brief moment, with high speed under control, thoughts vanished. Aside from the complicated issues of making a living, there’s just the car and me and the beautiful Tuscan roads. Nothing to think about Once you’ve crossed the curve in front of you, you can anticipate what the road will look like in front of you and grip the steering wheel tightly. I was driving a Ferrari 296 GTS.
Maranello is a quiet small town in Italy. When I said “It’s a nice view” from the hotel rooftop bar overlooking the plain, the Ferrari dealer shook his head and said it was just industrial property. Maranello is the home of Ferrari, a city designed by Ferrari for and for Ferrari, where the next real-life archetype is produced. It was also the starting point for our tour of Tuscany. The night before the test drive, there was a briefing on the Ferrari 296 GTS. Description of the new V6 engine called Little V12, the amount of aerodynamic effort to improve handling and braking performance at high speeds, the advantages of the chassis that creates agility and balance, the beauty of the engine sound, the difference from the 296 GTB. Explanation follows.
Hybrid system with 830 hp
If the previously revealed 296 GTB was a coupe, the 296 GTS is a spider model with a hardtop that opens and closes. Although the performance is slightly inferior to the coupe numerically, there is not much difference. Power is a turbocharged V6 and an electric motor at the rear. Together, the two systems produce up to 830 horsepower. Among the rear-wheel drive Spider models, performance is at the highest level. Electric motors have a short range. Its length is only 25 km, so it is preferable to use it only when moving calmly in the city or city center. If you want to draw attention with the sound of the engine, you can change the drive mode to the performance mode. However, the 296 GTS attracted attention with its ubiquitous presence. The name of the turbocharged V6 in the Ferrari 296 GTS is ICE (Internal Combustion Engine). A sense of naming a hot engine ICE! Maranello style wit. A distinctive feature of the engine is the cylinder block, which stretches 120 degrees.
Equipped with a turbo engine operating at equal intervals between Vs, the engine size is minimized and optimally distributed. Therefore, this structure helps reduce weight and lower the center of gravity of the vehicle as a whole. The biggest advantage is increased production. The maximum power of the ICE engine is 663 hp, and the specific power is 221 hp / l, which is a new record among mass-produced cars. The electric motor uses the MGU-K (Engine Generator Unit, Kinetic) motor derived from Formula 1 applications. Thanks to the 7.45 kWh high voltage battery, it delivers up to 122 kW (167 hp). The battery is placed on the floor behind the seat to lower the center of gravity and maintain balance when driving at high speeds. MGU-K is also compact. This made it possible to shorten the length of the powertrain and shorten the wheelbase. The transmission is 8-speed F1 DCT. It rotates smoothly without any impact and maintains a smooth driving feel.
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Strong downforce for high speed driving
The meeting time was 7:30. In front of the hotel lobby, six blue 296 GTS cars that look like they’ve been towed from the Mediterranean are lined up. The driving course takes about 4 hours, leave Maranello and travel to the Bologna region by motorway. It was a trip of about 100 km along the national road in the mountains of Tuscany, then on the motorway again and a track of about 100 km to the tourist town of Forte dei Marmi in Pisa. We left with high expectations, but what awaited us was rush hour in Italy. The two-lane road was crowded with passengers, and the 296 GTS slowly followed the signal. In the crowded section, the hybrid system worked. This newer sports car was much quieter and smoother than the others around. Although the morning mist didn’t go away, I opened the roof to get some fresh air. The hardtop, which opens and closes within 14 seconds, can be easily opened and closed while waiting for the signal. The smell of manure from the fields permeated the room. Then I woke up and my mind was clear. As I inhaled the delicious morning scent of Italy, my identity slowly waned.
To fully enjoy the sensitivity of the 296 GTS, the roof must be opened. Even with the roof open, the interior is relatively quiet. Although the wind noise is strong, not all the noise enters the room. Even the phone call was not difficult. The wind blows inside but only touches the driver’s head. The wind didn’t even land on my shoulder. We feel exactly the aerodynamics of the 296 GTS. To ensure a comfortable ride, he developed a solution that eliminates turbulence within the driver’s seat and manages air circulation around the passengers. It is designed to reduce the amount of recirculated air flow into the room. Even driving at high speed on the highway, the fatigue felt by the driver was small. Even in the tunnel, the amount of wind applied to the driver was less than expected. However, it is equipped with a neck warmer function that protects the body temperature by sending warm air to the passenger’s neck where he may feel cold. But I didn’t. The fog dissipated, the sky darkened, and the top of my head began to heat up.
It takes just 7.6 seconds to reach 200 km/h. When you gently press the accelerator pedal, the speed exceeds 200 km in an instant, at this time, the downforce is generated on the 296 GTS, the car adheres well to the road surface, and the driver feels a stable driving feeling. The design of the 296 GTS is engineered to deliver optimum aerodynamics. Active aerodynamic instrumentation and designs have been applied to generate more downforce and increase efficiency. In particular, the active rear spoiler creates an additional 100 kg of downforce for increased steering and braking force. I thought I was in control of the car steadily because I was holding the steering wheel, but in reality, it was thanks to the strong aerodynamic design.
Perfect balance in the winding cycle
The most interesting mountain path was the mountain pass in Tuscany. The narrow, winding road continued without stopping. The transmission is set to manual mode and the drive mode is changed to performance. You walk lightly on the road, turning the steering wheel back and forth between second and third gears. When I braked hard before a corner kick, I immediately slowed down as much as I wanted without losing my balance. It was as if the front of the car was digging into the road surface and indicating the turning point I wanted. Even when passing through turns very quickly, traction was not lost and no rollover occurred. Drivers can experience the essence of Italian culture while enjoying the beautiful scenery through the open-air circuit. I gained confidence in leadership. But behind the elegant exterior, there was a lot going on. The electronic side slip control system predicts and balances tire traction whenever the electronic power steering is engaged. That’s why he kept his balance precisely while moving the steering wheel back and forth. In addition, the chassis of the 296 GTS has improved torsional rigidity by 50% and bending stiffness by 8% compared to the previous Spyder model. Weight loss was repeated and the dry weight of the car decreased to only 1540 kg. The car feels light even while driving. Of course, the output is very powerful.
The music is not working. Wireless Apple CarPlay is available, but I can play Italian songs on the radio, but I didn’t have to. At the time, I was playing the sound of the V6 engine. The sound quality changed according to the number of revolutions per minute. The sound is not clear. No torn parts. It was soft and wonderful. As if playing a familiar metal instrument, sometimes with a low note, sometimes with a high note, sometimes with a long blast, he climbed onto the metronome and let the music flow through the picturesque landscape of Tuscany. The name of the song is Symphony 296 in GTS major.
|appearance||V6120 ° Turbo Dry Crankcase|
|The number of internally displaced||2,992 cc|
|Max Ice Force||663 hp|
|Hybrid maximum power||610 kW (830 hp) at 8000 rpm|
|Max torque||740 Nm at 6250 rpm|
|Engine Max Speed||8500 rpm|
|maximum speed||330 km/h|
|0-100 km/h||2.9 seconds|
|0-200 km/h||7.6 seconds|
|0-200 km/h braking distance||107 m|
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