The SUV market continues its dazzling growth, swaying even the most unyielding automakers in other automotive segments. After doing its business strictly in the sports car segment for 75 years, Ferrari has finally caved to the SUV marketplace pressure with the introduction of the Purosangue. Perhaps, owning up to caving may not be easy since the automaker is shying away from calling the Purosangue what it is – an SUV.
But from what we know, the Purosangue has everything it takes to compete in the performance SUV sector, where the Lamborghini Urus and Cayenne Turbo are kings. Also, it will compete in the luxury SUV sector, getting in the Rolls-Royce Cullinan and Bentley Bentayga’s crosshairs. If Porsche’s and Aston Martin’s ventures into the SUV market are anything to go by, the Purosangue could become Ferrari’s best-selling vehicle in the near future. While waiting to see if the prediction is correct, here are a few things to know about Ferrari’s first four-door.
Build and Configuration
The task of achieving an SUV’s rigidity and a sports car’s performance required a completely new chassis. Ferrari knew the assignment and did it well. The automaker designed a chassis that, although larger than previous Ferrari four-seaters (not production cars), is lighter than them. The chassis is divided into two structures, with the lower part made from high-strength aluminum alloy.
Ferrari also adopted a unique layout and configuration. While many crossovers have front-mounted engines, the Purosangue’s engine is pushed further back, and the gearbox is at the rear. The layout is sporty, creating a 49:51 weight distribution between the front and rear.
An Architecture Like No Other
Being Ferrari’s first-ever four-door and first high-riding vehicle means gearheads expect a deviation from the typical Ferrari design approach. But the Purosangue inherits some design cues from earlier Ferraris. For example, the front and rear are inspired by the Roman, the headlights remind you of the SP1 Monza, while the vents and kinked side windows seem to be from the 4-seater FF.
The Ferrari Styling Center opted for a design that will compete simultaneously in the beauty and aerodynamic segment. As a result, in place of straight lines, Ferrari chose flows and aerobridges. Unlike what you’d expect from regular SUVs, the Purosangue’s headlights are hidden in the air duct, pushing the Led Daytime Running above, closer to the sloping bonnet.
The side profile is the most attractive element of the Purosangue. And the most noticeable element on the side is the horizontal line creating what looks like a division. Ferrari explains this as “two separate and distinct levels: the lower more technical underbody and the gloriously sinuous, imposing upperbody.” The rear profile features a split tail light architecture and a huge rear diffuser. Generally, the Purosangue has a distinct, athletic appearance.
A Lounge For All
How do you give a 4-door SUV a 2-door appearance? Ferrari answered the question with the Purosangue’s rear-hinged back doors (a.k.a “suicide” doors), which grant easy access to the passenger’s side of the luxurious cabin. The interior features a dual-cockpit dashboard concept, with one 10.2-inch screen on both sides of the front row. According to Ferrari, the passenger’s display is to help the front passenger participate in the driving experience. There is no central display infotainment system, but a control dial gives both the driver and front passenger access to the HVAC system. The driver can control other car functions from the multifunction steering wheel.
Determined to create four unique areas in the Cabin, Ferrari made all seats individual buckets, meaning although the SUV is spacious, it has no room for a fifth passenger. A center console similar to the one in front replaces the regular bench between the rear seats.
Although the Purosangue has the highest driving position ever known of a Ferrari, its configuration means the driving position is still closer to the floor than most SUVs. All seats are all heated, the materials are the quality you would expect of a Ferrari, and there is an air quality sensor to improve the air quality in the cabin. What’s more? You can set the front seats to massage you on the go.
A Real Sports Car Performance
The Purosangue is an SUV, but it is first a Ferrari, and it delivers the level of performance expected of a vehicle wearing the Prancing Horse badge. A mid-front-mounted naturally-aspirated 6.5-liter V12 lurks under the SUV’s hood, transmitting power to the wheels through an eight-speed dual-clutch while producing an unmistakable Ferrari soundtrack to everyone within earshot.
The 715-hp V12 delivers 528 lb. ft of torque, powering the Purosangue from 0 to 62 mph in just 3.3 seconds and hitting a top speed of 193 mph. When it hits the roads, the Purosangue could become one of the quickest SUVs on the market. In addition to its impressive performance figures, Ferrari promises that the Purosangue will deliver the same handling response as one of its sports cars. We don’t know how Ferrari will achieve this, but we know the Prancing Horse will equip the Purosangue with an all-new Ferrari active suspension system to improve the driving experience.
The Car-SUV Debate
Although the Purosangue looks like a crossover SUV, the Prancing Horse calls it a “four-door sports car.” In the announcement of the new vehicle, the automaker also contrasted the Purosangue’s engineering with that of typical crossovers. Considering Purosangue’s unique layout and engine positioning, Ferrari might have a point.
But what is a four-door with four full-sized, fully adjustable seats and a taller driving position than most sports cars if not an SUV? The Purosangue also has the most spacious cargo area of any Ferrari to date. With about 195 and 79 inches in length and width, the Purosangue is bigger than the 2023 Genesis GV80. Except that the latter has about 5 more inches in height. The Purosangue also has bigger dimensions than the 2022 Hyundai Ioniq 5, a crossover.
The Global SUV community has been expecting a Ferrari SUV since 2018; therefore, we are not having Ferrari’s semantics. The Purosangue is an SUV. A class-leading, probably, super-SUV.
The Finishing Line
The Purosangue will likely hit the market sometime in 2023, but, as expected, it will be for people with deep pockets. We expect prices to start as high as $400,000. If Ferrari delivers on all its promises, the Purosangue might offer unmatched driving pleasure for an SUV, incredible comfort, and impressive performance.