The prancing horses have been a staple of the exotic car market for many decades. With its ability to mix speed, performance and style, Ferrari has been a favourite among car enthusiasts worldwide. If by chance someone is asked to list his or her dream car, there is a strong possibility that a Ferrari is among those included. For many, Ferrari also represents an attitude of brashness and status that can only be attained by those rich enough to afford its models. Truly, Ferrari is cheered and adored by many but it is not for everyone.
When studying the history of Ferrari one can easily see that its original engineers had one goal and that is to produce the best car possible. Based in Maranello and Modena, Italy, Ferrari was founded in 1929 by Enzo Ferrari. The company first focused on sponsoring race drivers and cars before expanding to the production of street legal vehicles. Car aficionados actually equate Ferrari to racing, given its deep connection with the sport. Ferrari is arguably the most successful racing company in the world, as it has enjoyed world championships in different decades. Drivers know that being part of Ferrari makes them as close to success as possible.
Ferrari first tasted success in motor sports in 1949 when Luigi Chinetti won the 24 Hours of Le Mans driving a Model 166M. Chigetti eventually become an important figure in Ferrari's expansion in the international market, as he became the company's American dealer and created its official racing division, the North American Racing Team.
The Scuderia is also a pioneer in the Formula One World Championship, as it participated in the first F1 race in 1950. Ferrari won its first F1 race at the 1951 British Grand Prix when Jose Froilan Gonzalez finished first.
However, success in racing did not always result in huge financial rewards for Ferrari. Its founder knew that passion alone could not save his beloved firm from a possible fiscal collapse. With a heavy heart, Enzo in 1969 sold the racing unit to the Fiat group to help make sure that Ferrari remains a fixture in the sport. However, as part of the agreement, Enzo retained leadership of the unit until he died in 1988 at age 90.
Ferrari has also branched out to other business ventures such as pens, perfume, clothing, eyewear and even laptop computers. This just showed that the Ferrari brand was a strong force in business and anything that is related can be sold in the market.
The first Ferrari ever produced for the road was the 125 S, which was equipped with a powerful V12 engine. Despite the large clamour for Ferrari cars, Enzo was not particularly enthusiastic with the hoopla over his creations. Enzo hated customers that purchased a Ferrari for the prestige instead of its performance. However, Enzo was forced to embrace commercialism in order to raise funds to operate the Scuderia. Design has always been put at a premium in Ferrari's development of cars. Known design houses that have had the privilege of working for Ferrari include Vignale, Ghia, Bertone and Scaglietti.
With success always following Ferrari, it will always be a blazing force in racing and car manufacturing for many years to come.
Original Authors: Manny
Edit Update Authors: M.A.Harris
Updated On: 10/06/2008