Geneva, 01 March, 2001
Ferrari – Status Quo
The Ferrari stand seemed smaller than usual, although perhaps it was just an illusion created by the greater
size of the more prominent Maserati stand opposite. There were no new offerings, although the five car display
was a very attractive alternation of red and black coachwork. Pole position went to an example of the
Championship winning F1-2000, which was flanked by black painted 456M GTA and 550 Maranello models,
with Rosso Corsa 360 Modena F1 and 360 Spider models occupying the extremities of the stand.
Although there was no press conference on the Ferrari stand, there was one hosted by Ferrari President and
Chairman, Luca di Montezemolo on the Maserati stand. During the course of this he announced that Maurizio
Parlatto, currently CEO of Ferrari Deutschland, would become Ferrari & Maserati Sales and Marketing Director
as of 1 March 2001. Sergio Pininfarina was also in attendance, and it was announced that his company was
working on the design of a new four door model, although no release date was given. At the end of the
conference the renowned American automobile magazine took the opportunity to present Luca di Montezemolo
with their ”Man Of The Year” award for his achievements in guiding Ferrari to their first World Drivers’
Championship in 21 years.
The expansive Maserati stand with light wood flooring and panelling had a trio of current production metallic blue
3200GTs in one area, and a low wall surrounding the second display area where their history and future was on
show. As a tribute to the American racing connection of the Camoradi team, there was a mid-engined Tipo 63
”Birdcage” in the traditional white with twin blue stripes, which was complimented by a similarly liveried 3200 GT
based concept race car, the 320S. This radical single seater barchetta built on a shortened 3200 GT chassis is
a prelude to the forthcoming spider model, which is due to be launched at the Frankfurt Salon later this year, and
to go on sale in the USA in 2002.
There was also a further development of the 3200 GT shown, called the ”Assetto Corsa”, which is aimed at
clients who want even more sporting handling and ride characteristics than offered by the standard model. This
has lowered suspension with variable settings, a larger diameter front anti-roll bar, new design 15 spoke light
alloy wheels fitted with Pirelli P Zero Corse soft mix tyres, harder compound brake pads in red callipers,
additional brake cooling ducts, a variable response brake servo, sport pedals, and ”Assetto Corsa” logo on the
sill kick plates.
Pininfarina showed a 550 Barchetta Pininfarina finished in Rosso Corsa on a revolving plinth, and according to
the plaque on the centre console was 01/448, carrying chassis number 121680. Michelin had the Pininfarina
Rossa on loan, and this could easily have been missed, tucked away in the corner of the hall almost hidden by
the Ford stand.
Then there was the Sbarro confection based on a Mondial t cabriolet. How best to describe it? Unusual -
certainly, different – definitely, attractive – definitely not, perhaps the best description based on its appearance
would be to liken it to a high speed snow plough! However, opinions are subjective, and I am sure that
somebody out there finds it irresistible. More worthy of mention was the beautiful Alfa Romeo Alfetta 159 Grand
Prix car displayed on the Zagato stand.
One of the premier European salons, Geneva attracted all the major manufacturers, with a fare sprinkling
of new concept cars, along with interesting proposals from both the major and smaller design houses, to
make for an extremely varied and interesting show.