The 2020 Ferrari 812 GTS Spider Has a Front-Mounted V-12 and That’s a Big Deal
The Ferrari 812 GTS is the drop top 812 Superfast you’ve been wantingby Andrei Nedelea, on
If you were holding off buying the Ferrari 812 Superfast because you really wanted it as a convertible, then you should grab your checkbook because that exact car has been unveiled. It’s called the 812 GTS and Ferrari didn’t mess around with it too much - it really is just that: the drop-top version of the 812 hardtop.
Ferrari is keen to remind use that this particular formula - drop top, V-12 engine in the front, is really quite a rare combination throughout the manufacturer’s history. It points out that the last such model to go on sale was the 2010 Ferrari SA Aperta, although it also counts the limited-series 2014 Ferrari F60 America that was launched to mark the manufacturer’s 60th year on the American market.
Its 6.5-liter V-12 engine makes exactly as much horsepower as the 812 coupe - 788 horsepower (800 PS) achieved very high in the rev range, at 8,500 rpm. The automaker still lets you play with another 400 rpm at the red end of the tach, as the engine revs to 8,900 rpm before the limiter kicks in. Torque is rated at 718 Nm (529 pound-feet) and it too arrives very high in the revs, at 7,000 rpm.
|Engine||V12 - 65°|
|Overall displacement||6496 cc|
|Bore and stroke||94x78 mm|
|Maximum power output*||588 kW (800 cv) at 8500 rpm|
|Maximum torque*||718 Nm at 7000 rpm|
|Specific power output||123 cv/l|
|Max. engine speed||8.900 rpm|
|Transmission and gearbox||7-speed dual-clutch gearbox|
|Electronic controls||EPS, PCV 2.0, E-Diff3, F1-Trac, ABS/EBDprestazionale con Ferrari Pre-Fill, FrS SCM-E, SSC 5.0|
|0-100 km/h||<3.0 sec|
|0-200 km/h||8.3 sec|
|Max. speed||over 340 km/h|
But even with torque peaking at 7,000 rpm, Ferrari says 80 percent of it is already available from 3,500 rpm, thus ensuring good pick-up, followed by a linear surge all the way to the red line.
Through the use of low-inertia internals, the engine also revs very freely, giving those on board “the feeling of boundless power and acceleration,” according to the official blurb.
This engine is a development of the V-12 that powers the F12 Berlinetta, and Ferrari seems especially proud that it managed to extract an additional 59 horsepower (60 PS) out of it without resorting to adding a turbo or electrification. The gearbox is the exact same seven-speed twin-clutch unit from the 812 Superfast.
As you can imagine, though, the 812 GTS is slightly heavier than the 812 Superfast, and this does have a (minor) negative effect on the performance. The hardtop Superfast weighs 1,525 kilograms (3,362 pounds) dry, while the drop-top GTS is almost an entire passenger heavier, tipping the scales at 1,600 kilograms (3,527 pounds) dry.
Ferrari says the naught to 100 km/h (62 mph) time remains the same (sub-3 seconds), but the extra weight of the GTS does start to make its presence felt as speed builds.
The automaker says the GTS needs 8.3 seconds to hit 200 km/h (124 mph) from a standstill, while the Superfast coupe needs 7.9 seconds for the same sprint.
The difference is not huge - and you probably don’t really notice it from behind the wheel. Ferrari says the 812 GTS offers the same performance as the 812 Superfast, but I think they’re just referring to the visceral experience of being aboard the car, not the actual numbers. Because when it comes to actual numbers, the hardtop is clearly quicker. Top speed is rated at over 340 km/h for both, so at the very top end, the extra weight of the GTS doesn’t matter as much.
In the corners, Ferrari says its goal was to make the 812 GTS just as good as the 812 Superfast.
It has the same four-wheel steering setup that bestows the Superfast with extra agility and pin-sharp response to even the smallest amount of steering lock, and if it’s like that car, it may feel a bit twitchy and daunting for some drivers. The steering itself has also been criticized by some who have driven the car and have said it lacks feel and this, in combination with the aforementioned sharpness makes the car feel a bit edgy and skittish (especially with the electronic nannies disabled).
In terms of design, you’ll easily be able to tell the 812 GTS from the 812 Superfast by the shape of the roof and the B-pillar. The Superfast coupe has a vent right behind the side windows, and because the GTS’ roof folds and stows away in the trunk, Ferrari has had to compensate. What engineers did is reshape the rear diffuser and also add another flap to it, but while the airflow has been compensated for, the look of the GTS is quite different.
The convertible’s tonneau cover for the retractable roof is quite different in shape to the similar piece on the coupe.
This really does lend the car a surprisingly different visual character - there’s something more to it than just the fact that it’s the convertible variant of the 812 Superfast; I’d even go so far as to say the 812 GTS is the prettier car of the two, even though the 812 Superfast has the cleaner, more flowing lines.
The 2020 Ferrari 812 GTS doesn’t really have any natural rivals. There certainly are similar cars that are somewhat similar, complete with V-12 engines and oodles of power, but none can match its sheer performance and blend of qualities.
One such car is the Aston Martin DBS Superleggera Volante, a gorgeous looking two-seater convertible version of the DBS Superleggera. Its 5.2-liter V-12 has twin turbos, but is down on power compared to the Ferrari 812 GTS - 715 horsepower, 900 Nm (663 pound-feet) of torque. Aston claims it can sprint to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 3.6 seconds and that its top speed is 340 km/h (211 mph) - the latter is exactly the same as the 812 GTS.
Another rival is the Mercedes-AMG S65 Cabriolet, definitely a more relaxed and cruising-oriented car. Its twin-turbo 6-liter V-12 pumps out 630 horsepower and 1,000 Nm (737 pound-feet) of torque, but since it’s only rear-wheel drive, and a bit on the heavy side (it weighs 2,180 kilograms / 4,806 pounds), it needs around 4 seconds to hit 100 km/h from naught. From the factory, it is also limited to just 250 km/h (155 mph), and even though this limiter can be removed, it’s not something you have to contend with if you opt for another similar car. On advantage it has over other rivals is the fact that it’s considerably more comfortable to be in and it can actually seat four people quite comfortably.
|Front track||1672 mm|
|Rear track||1645 mm|
|Dry weight**||1600 kg|
|Weight distribution||47% ant - 53% post|
|Boot capacity||210 l|
|Fuel tank capacity||92 l|
Read our full review on the 2018 Ferrari 812 Superfast.
Read our full speculative review on the 2020 Ferrari 812 Aperta.