Top Ferrari Exec Strongly Hints The Arrival Of A Fifth Model
Could the Ferrari Dino finally be making its long-awaited comeback?by Kirby, on
Ferrari appears to be closer than ever to bringing back the Dino nameplate after the automaker’s Far East Hub CEO, Dieter Knechtel, essentially let the cat out of the bag during an appearance at the Australian Grand Prix. Speaking with The Motor Report, Knechtel all but confirmed Ferrari’s plan to offer “another model after the California in the GT segment.”
That was actually Knechtel’s exact quote, which is as strong an indication as anything Maranello has said in the past about the status of a new model that would line up beside the California T as a co-entry-level model, for a lack of a better term. Until now, Ferrari has been coy about the supposedly new sports car but Knechtel’s comments does open the door for all the speculation surrounding the Dino’s return.
Granted, Knechtel didn’t exactly drop a bomb of sorts in actually confirming the new model, but given Ferrari’s recent acceptance of downsized engines and its new-found willingness to use turbochargers in order to abide by stricter emissions regulations, a go-between GT model makes a lot of sense.
What’s still unclear is where this model will sit. Some have said that it would depose the California T as Ferrari’s entry-level model. Reports that it would use a turbocharged V-6 engine back that up since the California already utilizes a turbo V-8 that pumps out 550 horsepower. On the flip side, there are also whispers that the model would actually slot in between the 550-horsepower California T and the 660-horsepower 488 GTB. Either way, both scenarios give Ferrari another “affordable” model to balance out its entire lineup.
Expect to hear more about the status of this “will they or won’t they” Ferrari soon. Everybody seems to have an opinion on it now, including those within Maranello’s brain trust.
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Why it matters
Ferrari has never been the type to give in to peer pressure, but I think that something about its rivals’ decision to expand has given the decision-makers over at Maranello a lot of things to think about. Add that to the increasing pressure to abide by stricter emissions regulations and you have what could very well be the perfect storm of circumstances that is leading Ferrari down this path.
I wouldn’t say I’m shocked by it because the industry itself is bigger than any one automaker. But I am a little bit surprised that Ferrari has changed its tune from as recently as four years ago when it frowned upon taking on more volume and just as important, moving away from naturally aspirated engines.
But here we are now. Not only is the California T turbocharged, but so is the 488 GTB. If the new Dino does come to life, you can add that model to the turbocharged lineup within the Prancing Horse famiglia. About the car, I’m not as bullishly against it as I once was, partly because the supercar scene is already in the middle of a technological and ecological evolution. Rivals like McLaren have already embarked on this new adventure and unless Ferrari does the same thing, it could face the possibility of being left out.
That’s why I’m looking forward to the Dino, or whatever name it’s going to have. Granted, this acceptance doesn’t come by choice, but of an equal understanding of the current and future climates of the business. Ferrari is smart enough to know this too, which is this new entry-level GT model is looking more and more feasible as the days go by. Hopefully, we get a confirmation from Ferrari soon, something that I believe isn’t a question of “if” anymore as it is “when.”
Red our full review on the Ferrari Dino here.