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Ferrari Kicks Off 70th Anniversary

1947 Ferrari 125 S and 2017 Ferrari LaFerrari Aperta
1947 Ferrari 125 S and 2017 Ferrari LaFerrari Aperta

On March 12 1947, Enzo Ferrari fired up the 125 S, the first car to bear his name. That test-drive on the streets of Maranello marked the start of modern Ferrari history. The then-modest factory quickly grew into one of the great internationally-renowned icons. Now, exactly 70 years later, on March 12 2017, Ferrari launched its official celebrations for this milestone anniversary.

To coincide with the official start of the celebrations and to commemorate the events of 70 years ago, Ferrari released a special video featuring a re-enactment of the first 12-cylinder to sport the Cavallino Rampante on its bonnet, the 125 S, driving through the factory gates on Via Abetone Inferiore.

125 S, the first Ferrari

This was the first car to sport the Ferrari badge. Its 12-cylinder engine was designed by Gioacchino Colombo with Giuseppe Busso and Luigi Bazzi also contributing to the project. On March 12 1947, the 125 S, still an unbodied steel rolling chassis, roared to life for the first time and the Ferrari adventure began. Two months later, on May 11 1947, the car made its track debut at the Piacenza Circuit. At the wheel of the 125 S (the S referring to its sports car-type bodywork) was Franco Cortese.

Enzo Ferrari dubbed this maiden outing as “a promising failure” after the car was forced to pull up with a fuel pump problem whilst leading the race. However, that moment of failure was short-lived as just nine days later on May 20, Franco Cortese drove the 125 S to victory in the Rome Grand Prix, completing the 40 laps of the circuit and the 137 kilometres of the race at an average speed of 88.5 km/h. This was the first of six victories the 125 S delivered in 1947, the most notable of which was the Parma Grand Prix with Tazio Nuvolari doing the driving.

“Driven by Emotion” Anniversary

In the course of 2017, over 60 nations will host events crafted to treat clients and enthusiasts of the marque to a string of experiences as part of the “Driven by Emotion” concept. Thus, March 12 marked the start of the anniversary events with Australasia opening the programme. The LaFerrari Aperta will be present at each stage as the symbol of the 70th anniversary.

The anniversary celebrations will culminate in Maranello on the weekend of September 9 and 10, but will also be flanked by other initiatives paying homage to Cavallino Rampante history, not least special exhibitions and the first Cavalcade Classiche.

A website has been created to flank the celebrations as they unfold throughout the year as well as to introduce the moments and individuals in the company’s history. For more, visit

Highlights from Ferrari’s 70 Years

1947 Ferrari is founded and gains its first victory with 125 S at the Rome GP
1948 Unveiling of the 166 MM Barchetta at the Turin Motor Show
1949 Ferrari wins its first 24H of Le Mans, with Luigi Chinetti/Lord Seldson driving the 166 MM Barchetta
1950 Ferrari debuts in F1 in second GP in history
1950 Giannino Marzotto and the Ferrari 195 S win at the Mille Miglia
1951 Froilan Gonzalez brings Ferrari its first F1 GP victory in the 375 F1
1952 Alberto Ascari, in the Ferrari 500 F2, secures a first Formula 1 world title
1952 Vittorio Marzotto, in the 225S, drives Ferrari to a first win on the Monaco circuit
1953 Ferrari World Sportscar champion with the 340 MM and 375 MM
1954 The first car in the famous 250 family is presented at the Paris Motor Show
1954 Umberto Maglioli drives a Ferrari 375 Plus to victory in the last Carrera Panamericana in Mexico
1955 Launch of 250 Coupé Pinin Farina
1956 Juan Manuel Fangio is crowned F1 world champion at the wheel of the Ferrari D50
1957 Pietro Taruffi wins the last Mille Miglia in a Ferrari 315 S
1957 Launch of Ferrari 250 California
1958 Mike Hawthorn wins world championship with a Ferrari 246 F1
1959 Ferrari wins the 12 Hours of Sebring
1960 Stirling Moss drives a 250 GT Berlinetta to the first of five consecutive Ferrari triumphs in Tourist Trophy
1961 Ferrari wins three world titles; the Drivers’ with Phil Hill and the Manufacturers’ in F1 and sportscars
1962 Presentation of the 250 GTO, winner of the International Championship for GT Manufacturers in 1962, 1963, 1964
1963 The Ferrari 250 P of Lorenzo Bandini and Lodovico Scarfiotti wins the 24 Hours of Le Mans
1964 John Surtees becomes Formula 1 world champion with the 158 F1
1965 Ferrari 275 P2 of Lorenzo Bandini and Nino Vaccarella wins the Targa Florio
1966 Turin sees the presentation of the 365 P special, a unique three-seater
1967 Three Ferraris, two 330 P4s and a 412 P secure the first three places in the 24 Hours of Daytona
1968 The GTB4 365 (Daytona) is presented at the Paris Motor Show
1968 The Dino 166 F2 of Andrea De Adamich wins the Temporada Argentina
1969 Fiat becomes a Ferrari shareholder
1969 Ferrari 212 E of Peter Schetty wins the European Hillclimb championship
1969 The Dino 246 of Chris Amon wins the Tasmania Cup
1970 Creation of the 512 S, with only 25 examples produced
1971 The 365 GT4 BB, the first rear-engined 12-cylinder Ferrari GT is unveiled at the Turin Motor Show
1972 Opening of Ferrari’s test track at Fiorano
1972 Ferrari crowned the world sportscar champions for constructors with the P 312, with ten wins out of ten races
1973 Launch of Dino 308 GT4, equipped with an 8-cylinder V-engine
1974 Lauda wins the Spanish Grand Prix with 312 B3-74, giving Ferrari its 50th triumph in F1
1975 Lauda with the 312 T wins the Formula 1 world title
1975 Launch of the 308 GTB, the first 8-cylinder GT Berlinetta
1976 The 400 Automatic is presented at the Paris Motor Show
1977 Lauda wins his second world title with the 312 T2
1978 Gilles Villeneuve wins his first GP, that of Canada, with the 312 T3
1979 Jody Scheckter is world champion with the Ferrari 312 T4
1980 Unveiling of the Mondial 8, a four-seater with a V8 engine
1981 Gilles Villeneuve drives turbocharged F1 126 Ck to first win at Monaco
1982 The Ferrari 308 GTB of Tognana De Antoni wins the 1982 Italian Rally Championship
1983 Launch of the Mondial Cabriolet GT
1984 Ferrari surprises the Geneva Motor Show with a GTO
1984 The Ferrari Testarossa is presented at the Paris Show
1985 Geneva presents the 328 GTS
1986 Ferrari presents the 637, a single-seater destined for the CART championship that never happened
1987 The F40 is unveiled at the Frankfurt Motor Show
1988 Enzo Ferrari dies on 14 August aged 90
1989 Nigel Mansell wins the Brazilian Grand Prix with an F1-89, equipped with steering wheel controlled gearbox
1990 Alain Prost wins the French GP giving Ferrari its 100th F1 victory
1991 Launch of the 512 TR, heir to the Testarossa
1992 The 456 GT, a new benchmark for style and elegance, is presented at the Paris Motor Show
1993 Launch of the Ferrari Challenge, the first Maranello single-make championship
1994 F512 M, the latest model produced with twelve-cylinder centrally mounted boxer engine
1995 Production begins on the F50, a true F1 road car
1996 Michael Schumacher triumphs in the Spanish Grand Prix with Ferrari
1997 Launch of the 355 F1, the first GT with electrohydraulic gearbox with F1-type steering wheel control
1998 Opening of Scuderia Ferrari’s new wind tunnel, designed by Renzo Piano.
1999 Ferrari wins F1 World constructors’ title and introduces the 360 ??Modena
2000 Michael Schumacher is F1 world champion and the F1 2000 wins the constructors world championship
2001 Ferrari and Michael Schumacher repeat the double F1 world title
2002 The Enzo is presented in Paris and Ferrari wins 2 world titles for the 3rd consecutive year
2003 Ferrari is still the world constructors’ and drivers’ champion in the F2003-GA, dedicated to Giovanni Agnelli
2004 Ferrari sets the record of six world constructors’ titles and five consecutive world drivers’ titles in F1
2005 Launch of the Superamerica GT
2006 Start of the exclusive XX Programme, extreme performance for the best customers
2007 Kimi Raikkonen and Scuderia Ferrari are world champions
2008 Scuderia Ferrari is world champion for the sixteenth time
2009 Launch of the 458 Italia, the new 8-cylinder Berlinetta
2010 Ferrari World opens to the public, the first theme park dedicated to Ferrari history
2011 Creation of the FF, the first 4WD Ferrari
2012 Unveiling of the F12 Berlinetta, a 12-cylinder car with sophisticated aerodynamics
2013 Production begins on the LaFerrari, the first hybrid in the history of the Prancing Horse
2014 Unveiling of the FXX K, the most powerful Ferrari ever produced
2015 Ferrari is listed on the New York Stock Exchange
2016 LaFerrari Aperta presented in Paris for the company’s 70th birthday
2016 Ferrari launches on the Milan Stock Exchange
2017 The latest addition to the Ferrari family, the 812 Superfast, debuts at Geneva

[Source: Ferrari SpA]