Michael Jurtin Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s
2013 was undoubtedly one of the most important years in modern automotive history. Within six months, three of the most extreme hypercars to ever hit the road would arrive with the sole intention of battling it out. You might know these cars as Holy Trinity: the Porsche 918 Spyder, the McLaren P1 and the Ferrari LaFerrari. Now, thanks to the folks at RM Sotheby’s, you have the chance to bring home an important part of that history with a real LaFerrari prototype.
When the LaFerrari began its development cycle, the vehicle was adorned with the internal moniker of F150. And while that name might inspire a bit of laughter, the name actually followed the F140 nameplate given to the Ferrari Enzo that preceded it. The fact that the name just so happens to reflect the Ford was an added bonus to confuse people’s minds. Ford actually sued Ferrari in 2011 over its use of the nameplate, which Ferrari was actively using on its F1 car at the time. Ferrari soon began calling the race car the Ferrari 150º Italia after this, and the lawsuit was dropped. This particular phase one LaFerrari prototype is known as the F150 M6 and its authenticity has been verified by Ferrari Classiche.
The F150 M6 was the first LaFerrari prototype used during the early stages of development. The car runs on Ferrari’s Type F142 platform, which underpins the 458 Italia. As such, this particular prototype won’t be easily mistaken for a production-ready LaFerrari. The body looks more like a battered 458 than anything else, with several cut panels and other bits attached with an assortment of fasteners. The revised aero and intake system are the biggest clues to what’s going on. However, throw on the huge chunks of camouflage included in the sale, and the F150 M6 turns into something beyond recognizable.
Of course, the mission of the F150 M6 was not to look good. The car served as a test bed for LaFerrari’s V-12 powertrain and other mechanical components. The car itself is fitted with a V-12 engine type F140FB, which is not the same powertrain that ended up in the production variants. This powerplant is known as the Type F140FE, although it was largely developed from the learnings of this prototype machine. The F150 M6 would help test the KERS hybrid system that defined the LaFerrari, as well as the braking, steering, suspension and stability control systems. Ferrari will use the car between May 2011 and December 2012, before moving on to later development prototypes.
The automaker wouldn’t keep this prototype for very long either. By the time 2016 rolled around, Ferrari was ready to hand this thing over to a willing customer. The car first received a minor restoration using new Matte Nero paint. Of course, this vehicle was never really legal for road use, and that remains true to this day. There are several stickers and notes in the passenger compartment and the engine compartment to remind you of this little detail. That said, you can technically take the thing out on private property and drive as you please. It’s unclear whether the current owner did or not, but given that the car only has a tick of over 2000 miles on the odometer, we’re willing to bet against that theory.
In the world of hypercars, there’s something to be said for extreme exclusivity. And although the LaFerrari is anything but a common runabout, the automaker has made at least 499 coupes and 210 Aperta models. If you already own this pair (and let’s be honest, you probably would have both), this prototype is the ultimate. Although RM did not estimate the sale, the hammer price will surely be astronomical. If you are interested and extremely wealthy, the car will be sold on May 14 at the company’s auction in Monaco. Let’s hope this piece of Ferrari history doesn’t disappear from the public eye forever.
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