There Is No Other Car In the World Like the Ferrari SF90 Stradale

Ferrari dropped the bomb. The biggest that has ever fallen on the car world scene. It is the plug-in hybrid Ferrari SF90 Stradale, a production car that is more powerful and quicker than the LaFerrari itself. Inspired by none other than the F1 car, the new Ferrari SF90 Stradale became the Ferrari-first plug-in hybrid with a propulsion technology consisting of three electric motors and an overpowered V-8. Aptly named after the Scuderia Ferrari’s 90th anniversary and, coincidentally, the 2019 Ferrari F1 car, the Ferrari SF90 Stradale is the closest to a Ferrari F1 car you can experience on public roads.

Ferrari unveiled the car at a special event where Ferrari F1 drivers Sebastien Vettel and Charles Leclerc drove two SF90 Stradale cars onto the scene.

Disclosure: this is not the Ferrari LaFerrari successor. It is a whole new car that does not follow the F40, F50, Enzo, and the LaFerrari lineage. In fact, it is far less expensive compared to any of them. Nevertheless, it is much quicker too.

Exterior

  • 860 pounds of downforce
  • cut off Gurney for the rear spoiler
  • LED Matrix headlights (first for the Ferrari)
  • unique cooling system for the electric components
left right

While styled differently compared to any Ferrari before, the new SF90 Stradale still offers visage quality usually associated with the cars from Maranello. It would seem that the futuristic-looking Ferrari has a mission to manifest dominating PHEV presence within the Ferrari lineup. That is why the SF90 Stradale feels more extreme in its design compared to basically anything we have seen from Ferrari since the LaFerrari.

With leaner and sharper exterior lines, the SF90 Stradale gives a different vibe compared to the recently unveiled F8 Tributo.

Somehow, that one feels a bit chubby compared to SF90 Stradale!

The short overhangs, low slung front end, and rather low rear end evoke a certain aura of sophistication and seamlessness only achieved with dramatic but precise shapes. Lower cabin position, shorter overhangs, shallow back end, slit matrix LED headlight technology (first for a Ferrari), and small, thin rear lights further enhance that somewhat mysterious, precise, styling approach. This is a low-slung supercar.

I like it!

2020 Ferrari SF90 Stradale
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The front end, although an obvious Ferrari, does remind me of the new Pininfarina Battista. For a reason, though. See, the shape of the wide front intake is necessary for the aerodynamics and cooling reasons. All the air that enters on the sides of the massive intake lands on large radiators positioned in front of the front axle. These radiators cool down a high-voltage battery that sits just behind the cockpit. They also help cool the engine. Actually, the battery is just behind the seats, in the middle of the car, and positioned as low as possible.

The central part of the large front mouth feeds the radiator for the electric motors. In short, I do not believe that Flavio Manzoni and his team at the Ferrari Styling Centre would design the SF90 Stradale as they have if it wasn’t a plug-in hybrid.

Moving to the back, you can see a completely novel interpretation of traditional styling Ferrari values.

Instead of the standard rear spoiler, Ferrari engineers and designers worked on a unique shut of Gurney. It is something like an F1-derived DRS, only adapted for the road car. In short, under braking, and when cornering, the Gurney located just in front of the rear spoiler will shut off, completely closing the opening under the rear spoiler.

2020 Ferrari SF90 Stradale
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This action will increase the downforce and increase the drag to help with braking. Quite cool considering that the shape of the roof and the front end smartly lead massive amounts of air toward the rear spoiler. While at that, let me tell you that the Ferrari SF90 Stradale can produce up to 860 pounds of downforce at 155 mph.

2020 Ferrari SF90 Stradale Hybrid exterior dimensions
Length 4710 mm
Width 1972 mm
Height 1186 mm
Wheelbase 2650 mm
Front track 1679 mm
Rear track 1652 mm
Dry weight 1570 kg
Weight distribution 45% front - 55% rear
Boot capacity 74 l
Rear shelf capacity 20 l
Fuel tank capacity 68 l (2 reserve)

Interior

  • Steering Wheel With controls for all car functions
  • Head-up display
  • 16-inch HD display behind the wheel
  • haptic feedback buttons
  • sits lower compared to F8 Tributo
  • full carbon-fiber treatment with the Assetto Fiorano package
  • retro-inspired transmission selector buttons
2020 Ferrari SF90 Stradale
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Looking at the Ferrari SF90 Stradale and the Ferrari F8 Tributo cabin side by side, I cannot help but notice that the SF90 Stradale has much the same dashboard layout. Luckily, the F8 Tributo and 488 GTB dash is quite lovely, so I can get behind Ferrari integrating it in the SF90 Stradale as well. It does somewhat hurt the exclusivity of the latest Ferrari halo car tough.

Don’t get me wrong, I think it looks fantastic, but despite different shapes, the layout is the same as it was since like five years ago.

The Ferrari SF90 Stradale introduces many novelties in the cockpit, however. First of all, Ferrari included several touch surfaces on the dash and the steering wheel, seriously clearing up the dashboard. Just take a glance the Ferrari F8 Tributo and SF90 Stradale cockpits side by side.

left right

The steering wheel may well be the most important ergonomic innovation in the SF90 Stradale. Ferrari included a touchpad, haptic buttons and many, many options on it. In fact, you can control ALL car functions only using your thumbs. That’s rather incredible. Italian dedication on enhancing the pure driving experience is, honestly, unmatched. I mean, you do not have to move your hands off the steering wheel. Like ever!

Behind the wheel, Ferrari integrated a massive 16-inch curved HD screen - fully customizable, of course. It complements the F1 cockpit theme. The F1 theme dominates the most in the Assetto Fiorano version. There, naked carbon fiber weave surfaces replaced all the leather on the dashboard and the doors. It is rather impressive. Compared to the F8 Tributo, the driver and the passenger sit a bit closer to the ground on the new carbon fiber seats. Between them is a rather high central tunnel - completely different than in any other Ferrari. With one cup holder mind you — not two like in the Tributo.

2020 Ferrari SF90 Stradale
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Ferrari sacrificed one cup holder for an excellent reason - the transmission selector buttons are designed to mimic the metal gated shifter Ferrari once installed in its cars. It is a single most nostalgic feature on the Ferrari SF90 Stradale.

Complementing futuristic, and almost alien exhibition of technology inside, Ferrari developed an impressive head-up display for the SF90 Stradale. The head-up display presents information on the windshield in front of the driver and acts as an integral part of the human and machine interface Ferrari envisioned for this model.

Drivetrain

  • 0-62 mph in 2.5 seconds
  • Top speed of 211 mph
  • 15-mile all-electric range
  • three electric motors
  • F1 sourced MGUK regeneration technology
  • F1 inspired transmission
  • does not have a reverse gear
2020 Ferrari SF90 Stradale
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The Ferrari SF90 Stradale is the first mid-engine, all-wheel-drive Ferrari. Utilizing two electric motors situated in the middle of the front end precisely between the front wheels, the Ferrari SF90 Stradale can act as a front wheel drive car. When fully charged, its 7.9-kWh battery located just after the seats, power Yasa-developed and produced electric motors. This way, the SF90 Stradale can reach 84 mph and cover up to 15 miles before the internal combustion engine kicks in. Apart from offering electric-only propulsion, the front electric motors provide a real-time torque vectoring for the front wheels and considerably increase the performance of the SF90 Stradale. With a power density of 14kW per kilogram, the Yasa-developed electric motors provide the power for reversing the Ferrari SF90 Stradale. After all, in a search for a maximum weight reduction, Ferrari managed to lower the weight of the eight-speed dual clutch transmission by about 10 pounds just by removing the reverse gear from it.

That's right; the SF90 Stradale does not have a standard reverse gear - it can only move in reverse on power provided by front electric motors.

These motors integrated within the front axle have a name - RAC-e. This is a technology that manages the distribution of torque between the front wheels.

2020 Ferrari SF90 Stradale
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The third electric motor sits between the V-8 ICE and the transmission all the way back. Its name is MGUK. If you are big with the F1, you probably heard about the MGUK. In the simplest of terms, it is an electric motor that can use electric power from the batteries to help the ICE propel the car, or it can work as a generator to convert kinetic energy generated at the wheels into electric energy while dramatically slowing down the vehicle in the process. If you are interested in the intricacies of the MGUK working, I highly suggest you watch this ten minute Chain Bear F1 video that explains how the tech works in the F1 car. It is, more or less, the same story with the MGUK in the SF90 Stradale.

These three electric motors develop 217 horsepower, which adds onto the 769 horsepower of the 4.0-liter, V-8, internal combustion engine that sits deep under that glass panels in the back of the SF90 Stradale.

Increasing the bore to 88 millimeters (up from 86.5 in the 488 GTB), Ferrari increased the capacity of its F154 engine from 3,902 cc to 3,990 cc. We have here a 4.0-liter engine, and it is dramatically redesigned compared to anything we have seen before. With a wholly overhauled intake and exhaust, as well as the cylinder head, Ferrari managed to find a solution to integrate a high-performance 350-bar GDI fuel injection system. The novel approach included creating engine elements from Inconel and redesigning the position of the turbochargers. All in all, the final result is a lighter engine, that sits about 50 millimeters lower in the chassis compared to what we have seen in the F8 Tributo. Obviously, the position of the engine dramatically affected the center of gravity. It is lower than ever!

2020 Ferrari SF90 Stradale
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All the power from the V-8 flows through a lightweight flywheel and a super quick, dual clutch transmission. The transmission itself is a small wonder of engineering and acts as a transmission in an F1 car. It can be brutal, savage, and relay all the power to the back in an instant.

In short, the Ferrari SF90 Stradale drivetrain works as follows:

  • The front wheels are linked to two electric motors help propel the car forward and precisely distribute torque providing the most power to the front wheels with the most grip
  • The rear electric motor helps the ICE spin up quicker, recharges the battery, and effectively acts as a brake when converting kinetic energy into electricity
  • The mid-mounted, V-8 is the crucial power source that provides the rear wheels with up to 769 horsepower
  • The F1 inspired, eight-speed, dual-clutch transmission is the single most vital piece of this puzzle that helps save fuel (up to 8 percent compared to previous seven-speed gearbox), and change gears at a blistering rate.

The numbers you are waiting for are as follow:

2020 Ferrari SF90 Stradale Hybrid drivetrain specifications
Internal combustion engine
Type V8 - 90° - turbo – dry sump
Total displacement 3990 cc
Maximum power output 574 kW (780 cv) @ 7500 rpm
Max torque 800 Nm @ 6000 rpm
Specific power output 195 cv/l
Max. engine speed 8000 rpm
Compression ratio 9.5:1
Hybrid system
Maximum power electric motors 162 kW (220 cv)
Battery capacity 7.9 kWh
Max. range under electric power 25 km
Transmission and gearbox 8-speed, F1 dual-clutch transmission
Performance
Maximum speed 340 km/h
0-100 km/h 2.5 s
0-200 km/h 6.7 s
100-0 km/h 29.5 m
Dry weight/power 1.57 kg/cv
Laptime at Fiorano 79s

Thanks to so much hardware, Ferrari managed to create four unique driving modes:

eDrive - all-electric mode for a maximum speed of 84 mph, reversing, and 15 miles of range

Hybrid mode - a default mode that focuses on the efficiency of the ICE, and even turns it off if not needed. Don’t worry; it can provide savage performance if required.
Performance - it keeps the ICE running at all times, and it focuses it on replenishing the battery

2020 Ferrari SF90 Stradale
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Qualify - all hell breaks out with this one. Every single sip of fuel, and every single electron in the battery focus solely on providing a brutal performance experience as possible. Ferrari suggested that battery is big enough to support qualify mode for a full lap on any track on the world - even the Green Hell.

This means that Ferrari SF90 Stradale cannot provide all the power it has for as many laps as you want. James Glickenhaus actually commented on this on his twitter account. He said:

"Here’s a crazy difference. Ferrari proudly boasts that their new plug in hybrid can operate at full power for one lap at The Ring at full power of about 950HP weighing about 3400 LBS. Our 004CS non hybrid can operate at full power of about 850HP, weighing about 2500 lbs for 24 hours at The Ring. Our SCG LMP1 plug in hybrid/KERS will be able to operate at full power of about 1000 HP, weighing about 2500 LBS for 24 hours at Le Mans…”

Just food for thought!

Ferrari SF90 Stradale Assetto Fiorano

2020 Ferrari SF90 Stradale
- image 842233

The Assetto Fiorano package is like a track package for a hypercar. Choose this and yours Ferrari SF90 Stradale will get:

  • GT racing-derived Multimatic shock absorbers
  • carbon fiber door panels
  • carbon fiber underbody
  • titanium springs
  • titanium exhaust
  • carbon-fiber rear spoiler
  • soft, track loving and track hugging Michelin Pilot Sport Cup2 tires

Pricing

2020 Ferrari SF90 Stradale
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The Ferrari SF90 Stradale will slot in the $450,000 to $650,000 price bracket.
Considering that the 812 Superfast - the priciest Ferrari you can buy right now - goes for $365,000, I think that my above estimation is on point. See, the SF90 Stradale is a production car - not a one of, or a special series car (like the LaFerrari), so increasing its price to something unreasonable like a million bucks will not happen.

That does not mean that the SF90 Stradale isn’t a bomb in the car world. It is. I said so! Only a few days after the reveal, a used car dealer in Southern Germany published a listing on the Mobile.de (large German site for used cars) where he offered to sell a build slot for the Ferrari SF90 Stradale. He offered a build slot for $1,466,000.

You read that right!

One and a half mil for a freaking build slot of the Ferrari SF90 Stradale!

Competition

For $500,000 to $600,000, the Ferrari SF90 Stradale does not have a competitor. In fact, the SF90 Stradale is basically the most advanced production car currently on offer and not one car can match it.

This is my reasoning:

  • The LaFerrari is a unique series car, as is the McLaren P1, the Senna, the Porsche 918 Spyder, or basically any other hypercar/supercar that offers similar performance, or similar technology. Plus, all of them are dramatically more expensive compared to the SF90 Stradale.

In short, the world does not have a car that could directly compete with the SF90 Stradale. We are even waiting for Glickenhaus to reveal his propositions.
Yet, I wouldn’t be doing my job if I don’t dig up something that could, at least from the price standpoint, compare with the SF90 Stradale. Enter the Lamborghini Aventador SVJ.

Lamborghini Aventador SVJ

2019 Lamborghini Aventador SVJ Exterior
- image 791916

The Aventador SVJ is a special series car - not exactly a production model like the SF90 Stradale. Lamborghini plans to produce (or it already did) only 900 units of it.
With a $517,000 price tag, that is probably close to SF90 Stradale price; the Aventador SVJ shares remarkably similar performance numbers, and weight with the new Ferrari.

The Aventador SVJ can do 62 mph in 2.8 seconds (2.5 seconds for the SF90), it can do 124 mph in 8.6 seconds (6.7 seconds for the SF90), and 217 mph (211 mph for the SF90).

It is one of the last proper V-12, mid-engine supercars (or hypercars, I don’t know anymore) that come from Italy. Now, with four cylinders less, a hybrid system, and less weight, the Ferrari SF90 Stradale seems better in any measurable way. At least on paper!

Read our full review on the 2019 Lamborghini Aventador SVJ

Final Thoughts

2020 Ferrari SF90 Stradale
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Planning to produce up to 2,000 units per year, Ferrari wants to make the SF90 Stradale attainable to as many people as possible. While this may sound strange for a car as incredible and technologically apt like this, I think it is the right move. This way, a lot of Ferrari enthusiasts (people that buy and drive Ferraris - not those that write contradictory love/hate comments about it on the Internet) will get to acknowledge the greatness of the Ferrari PHEV setup. This is crucial considering that in some years, all Ferraris will be hybrids.

Ferrari did a magnificent job with the SF90 Stradale. It has the right name, and it has speed. Test drivers estimated that the new SF90 Stradale is 64 meters ahead of the Ferrari LaFerrari over the Fiorano test track in one lap. All that despite the 595 pounds of the additional weight of the hybrid setup.

I know that you ask - why should I haul so much additional weight with me? You don’t have to. That’s called the Ferrari F8 Tributo!

In total, the SF90 Stradale tips the scales at 3,461 pounds, some 30 pounds less compared to the LaFerrari.

  • Leave it
    • very expensive
    • needs a bit more exclusivity inside
    • only 15 miles of all EV range

Further reading

2020 Ferrari SF90 Stradale
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2021 Ferrari SF90 Stradale PHEV - Quirks and Facts You Have To Know About

2014 Ferrari LaFerrari High Resolution Exterior
- image 495448

Read our full review on the 2014 Ferrari LaFerrari

2021 Ferrari LaFerrari Successor Exterior Computer Renderings and Photoshop Exclusive Renderings
- image 721738

Read our full speculative review on the 2021 Ferrari LaFerrari Successor.

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