New Ferrari 812 Competizione revealed: there’s life in the V12 yet

Published: 05 May 2021

► Hardcore 812 Competizione debuts
► 819bhp naturally-aspirated V12…
► …and independent rear-wheel steering

Ferrari’s not done with its naturally-aspirated V12. This is the 812 Competizione – a new, harder version of its two-door 12-cylinder GT car.

The team at Maranello have introduced the 812 Competizione as a coupe and as a targa-top convertible, with the latter being named Competizione A (the ‘A’ standing for ‘aperta’, Italian for ‘open’).

The V12 lives on!

Yes, the 812 Competizione uses the same 6.5-litre naturally-aspirated V12, producing 819bhp and 510lb ft, as the 812 Superfast, but with a whole roster of changes.

The rev limit is upped to 9500rpm – 600rpm higher than the Superfast – and new mechanical details include the use of titanium conrods, new camshafts and a redesigned intake. A new ‘diamond-like carbon coating’ is applied to the piston pins and cams to reduce wear.

812 competizione aperta

In an outright performance sprint, the new Competizione model can sprint to 62mph in 2.9 seconds and keep on pulling past 211mph. Ferrari says that performance figures for the Competizione A are coming soon.

But it’s not all about power, as the Competizione has some innovative new technology to help bring the best out of the performance available. The first of many is independent rear-wheel steering: each of the rear wheels has actuators that can be activated individually, rather than in unison – Ferrari says that allows the 812 Competizione to react much quicker to changes of direction while remaining stable under hard, tight cornering manoeuvres.

Then there’s updated versions of the usual slew of performance software. Side Slip Control is now in its seventh generation, bundling together the traction and suspension control, along with brake pressure controls to allow the car to controllably drift without spinning out.

The Competizione is 37kg lighter than the Superfast, at 1487kg dry, those aforementioned new titanium conrods and a lighter crankshaft being the main weight-saving techniques in the engine bay. Forged aluminium wheels shave off 3.7kg alone over the Superfast. Ferrari says weight distribution is 49:51 per cent front/rear.

But look at that bodywork…

Certainly an evolution from the Superfast, isn’t it? Ferrari has to balance supreme aerodynamics with ensuring it still looks like a Ferrari. Deep creases in the bonnet, a redesigned front apron over the Superfast complete with a carbonfibre front splitter and deep side vents allow the Competizione to scythe through the air at speed.

812 competizione overhead

But it’s at the rear, with the Competizione’s almost completely blanked-out screen, that’s the biggest visual differentiator. It’s an all-aluminium panel and, given rear visibility is almost down to zero, the rear-view mirror has been replaced with a camera. Ferrari also says that this panel allows buyers – or those with particularly deep pockets – the chance to customise their new car a little more, too.

Want one? Tough – they’re all sold out, with Italian prices starting from €500,000 and €750,000 for the Aperta. Just 999 coupe models will be built, with 599 Aperta models to come, too.

Read our Ferrari reviews here

By Jake Groves

CAR's deputy news editor, office Geordie, gamer, lover of hot hatches