In 1991 Ferrari replaced the Testarossa with the 512 TR. In the title 5 represented the number of liters and the 12 for the number of cylinders, whilst the "TR" was an abbreviation of Testarossa (Testa Rossa). The model was produced between 1991 and 1994, when the F512M model replaced it, during which time 2261 examples were produced.
The 512 TR came with subtle exterior changes to improve aerodynamics. The alterations included a one-piece nose with rounded front grille, flush mounted lights and ducts, and a new undertray. At the rear a small kamm tail smoothed airflow.
Internally there were changes to the seats, steering wheel design and trim details. Mechanically there were numerous changes to the engine and gearbox, which boosted power, and provided a more satisfying and positive to use gearbox. Not visually apparent was that the engine and transmission assembly location in the chassis had been dropped by 30mm, to lower the center of gravity, and thus improve the already high standard of roadholding.
As with the Testarossa, the bodies were mounted on a 2550mm wheelbase chassis and was of virtually identical construction to that of the preceding model. The new nose treatment bore a family resemblance to that of the 348 model introduced in 1989, in the shape of the dummy grille bearing a chrome plated "Cavallino Rampante" bounded by the combined side, turn indicator, driving light units.
At the rear the valance was redesigned, providing more sculpted curves, with a change of shape for the registration plate recess. The Testarossa engine lid had featured a body colour raised central panel with satin black louvres to the rear and sides. With the advent of the 512 TR, the raised section and the louvres with a new profile either side of it were painted satin black, whilst the rear portion of louvres were finished in the body colour.
A 512 TR badge graced the rear lip of the engine cover, with a Ferrari script badge on its upper rear face, whilst a Testarossa script badge adorned the upper face of the satin black central section. The new alloy road wheels were a very elegant interpretation of the traditional Ferrari five spoke "star" design, featuring slim curved spokes. The front ones were 8J x 18" diameter and the rear ones 10.5J x 18" diameter, which increased the front track slightly, and reduced the rear track by a small amount.
The wheels covered larger ventilated and cross drilled brake discs actuated by four piston callipers, with separate front and rear hydraulic circuits, and servo assistance. The independent suspension and steering system layouts were essentially similar in concept to those of the Testarossa, but with a range of changes and adjustments to suit the larger diameter road wheels, and to provide a more refined ride.
Under the hood Ferrari placed a 4.9 liter Colombo Flat-12 engine mounted at 180 degree mid, longitudinally. Each cylinder has four valves, with forty-eight valves total, lubricated via a dry sump system, and a compression ratio of 10.00:1. The engine’s power has been increased to 38bhp to 428bhp @ 6750rpm for European models and 421bhp at the same engine speed for US models.
The Ferrari 512 TR can accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in 4.90 seconds and on to 100 mph in 10.70 seconds. It can complete a standing (from stationary) quarter mile in 13.20 seconds or a standing kilometer in 23.40 seconds. Top speed goes up to 195 mph.