Buy This LaFerrari Prototype And Live Out Your Supercar Test Driver Fantasies
Our stories are some of the most popular posts, but have you ever wondered what it would be like to drive one of those heavily disguised prototypes? Well, now’s your chance to find out because an incredibly rare LaFerrari test mule is heading for auction.
The absurdly named Ferrari LaFerrari hybrid was unveiled in 2013 and it arrived on the street a year later where it squared up against the McLaren P1 and Porsche 918 Spyder. But long before the finished 950 hp (963 PS) car was revealed, Ferrari engineers relied on this mule to test the upcoming hypercar’s brakes, steering, suspension, ESP and hybrid-assisted 6.3-liter V12 drivetrain.
This heavily modified 458 Italia was used by Ferrari between May 2011 and December 2012 in the first of three phases of LaFerrari development. Its aluminum chassis was heavily modified to accept a V12 engine, which, while an earlier F140FB motor from the FF shooting brake rather than the F140 FE of the final carbon-bodied production car, should still endow this 458 with far more muscle, and a far more musical soundtrack, than it would have ever had in standard V8 form.
Compared with the slick, polished, garage-queen LaFerraris we’reused to seeing, this mule is deliciously rough, and a triumph of function over form. There are big chunks of bodywork and trim hacked away, wires and warning notes everywhere, and best of all, it even comes with the bolt-on disguise panels it would have worn during testing to throw our spy photographers off the scent.
Carmakers’ test cars are usually retained by the company for further testing, or posterity, but quite often crushed, though in the case of this car, Ferrari sold it to a private collector in 2016 on the understanding that it could not be registered and used on the road. Sadly, that will continue to be the case for whoever takes it on at RM Sotheby’s Monaco sale in May, but it would make an amazing addition to a supercar collection, and since it does run and drive, there’s nothing stopping you enjoying it in off-highway environments.
If you’ve a passion for rare Ferraris and a driveway so long it doubles as a race track where you can let this fascinating piece of Ferrari history stretch its legs, reach for that fat wallet, because opportunities like this don’t come around often.There’s no estimate on price from the auction house, but expect to part with a multiple millions to get the keys.