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by Tim Beissmann

A brand-new Ferrari FF burst into flames in China over the weekend while driving through traffic in Shanghai.

The four-seat, four-wheel-drive Italian supercar – which retails for $625,000 in Australia – was reportedly driving down Shi Bo Avenue when smoke and flames began pluming out from beneath the body. Emergency services arrived on the scene quickly and no one was injured in the incident.

 

At this stage there is no explanation for the FF’s spontaneous combustion, and Ferrari China is currently investigating what happened to the car.

Edward Rowe from Ferrari’s Australian distributor European Automotive Imports said he had no extra information on the cause of the fire, and as such could not comment further.

Ferrari will be praying the FF fire is an isolated incident and not a more serious, widespread problem as was the case with the 458 Italia.

Ferrari was forced to recall 1248 of its $526,950 two-door 458 Italia sports cars in September 2010 after 10 caught fire within three months. The cause of those fires was an adhesive used in the wheel arches that could overheat, smoke and start a fire.

This is the first reported case of an FF catching fire.

 

The news comes as Ferrari prepares to unveil its all-new flagship 599 successor at next month’s Geneva motor show. Reports suggest the new supercar – tentatively referred to as the 620 GT – will be powered by a 6.3-litre V12 engine with in excess of 520kW of power. Its predecessor, the 599 GTB Fiorano F1, produced 456kW and 608Nm from its 6.0-litre V12.

Ferrari is full of momentum this year after achieving record sales and financial results in 2011. The Prancing Horse brand delivered 7195 sports cars last year, representing a 9.5 per cent increase over 2010.

The company’s revenue exceeded two billion euros ($2.5 billion) for the first time, and its trading profit increased 3.2 per cent to 312.4 million euros ($385.0 million).

Ferrari achieved record sales in the US with 1958 cars delivered, while the Greater China Area became the brand’s second-strongest region, with 777 cars sold. Germany (705), Great Britain (574) and the Middle East (approximately 450) were other dominant markets. Ferrari Australia delivered 134 cars in 2011, up 6.3 per cent on the previous year.

The Ferrari Museum in Maranello also hit a new high, with 240,000 visitors in 2011, including 60 per cent from outside Italy.

Note: Images courtesy CarsChina.com




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