Ferrari: Under the Skin exhibition at London Design Museum | CAR Magazine

Ferrari: Under the Skin exhibition at London Design Museum

Published: 28 September 2017

Design Museum celebrates Ferrari’s 70th
 Original sketches, models, rare cars
 Runs from November 2017 to April 2018

The London Design Museum has announced a new exhibition exploring the design, engineering and iconography of Ferrari’s history.

Called Ferrari: Under the Skin, it’ll run from 15 November 2017 to 15 April 2018, to chime in with Ferrari’s 70th anniversary.

What’s on show?

Highlights include:

  • Original drawings and an exact replica of the first Ferrari ever made, the 125 S
  • Personal letters and documents, including Enzo Ferrari’s driving licence
  • Original sketches and design drawings
  • Windtunnel models and wooden master models
  • The original 1:1 scale clay model of the rather stunning Ferrari J50 (pictured below, a run of 10 special cars built for Japan – read more about it here) has been painstakingly transported to London
  • A display exploring the life of Enzo Ferrari, featuring rare photography

For much of the archive memorabilia, it’s the first time it has made it outside of the Museo Ferrari in Maranello.

Ferrari J50

Any cars?

Lots of cars. One hundred and forty million quid’s worth of ’em, in fact, including Grand Prix cars driven by Peter Collins and Michael Schumacher – the latter being his year-2000 title-winning car. The most up-to-date machine on show is an open-top LaFerrari Aperta.

Others in the exhibition include:

  • 1950 Ferrari 166 MM
  • 1952 Ferrari 500 F2
  • 1957 Ferrari 250 GT chassis
  • 1957 Ferrari 250 GT Cabriolet, previously owned by Peter Collins and the first Ferrari to be fitted with disc brakes
  • 1960 Ferrari 250 GT SWB
  • 1961 Ferrari 250 GT Berlinetta ‘Sperimentale’, as raced by Sir Stirling Moss
  • 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO
  • 1967 Ferrari 275 GTB/4
  • 1973 Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona
  • 1986 Ferrari Testarossa Spider, commissioned by Gianni Agnelli and used as his personal car
  • 1988 Ferrari F40 (below)

Ferrari F40

Here’s the official line from Design Museum founder Sir Terence Conran: ‘The Ferrari story is one of the great adventure stories of the industrial age… the depth of emotion goes far beyond the external beauty of their cars: what excites me so much about this exhibition is the rare opportunity to glimpse behind the scenes and experience the dynamic between engineering, manufacturing and design, which produces Ferrari’s magic ingredient. It is a magic ingredient that means I am here, aged eighty-five and still lusting after the idea of owning a Ferrari.’

The exhibition’s co-curator Andrew Nahum says, more taciturnly: ‘Ferrari represents an ideal case study in design and development. The exhibition provides an insight into the history and practice of the whole private world of automotive design.’

By James Taylor

Former features editor for CAR, occasional racer