Every so often a car comes along that completely redefines one’s concept of acceleration. The launch control in a 911 Turbo S or the screaming, savage top end of a 458 Speciale’s V8. These are moments that are hard to forget.
Then there is the track-only Ferrari FXX K. Now, 1036bhp is never going to feel slow, but nothing could have prepared me for how Maranello's most extreme XX car to date was going to feel off the line at the Goodwood Festival of Speed last month.
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First and second gears were a complete blur, with the instantaneous power delivery of that complex hybrid powertrain delivering a hit of acceleration that felt almost unrelenting. It was as if the car would just keep on pulling away at the same rate, running out of gears before the acceleration abated.
If anything has well and truly stuck with me after Goodwood, it’s the noise. The FXX K sounds utterly barbaric. The way the V12 screams through the bare carbonfibre cabin is like nothing I've experience before. It's a visceral, F1-like sound that you can feel in your guts.
The cabin itself is a work of art. It has a race car feel, with switchgear that you’d expect to see in an LMP1 racer, only integrated beautifully into the FXX K’s carbonfibre tub.
The race seats in particular are a highlight, wrapping around you and holding your head forwards so you can stare out of the sloping, pillbox-esque windscreen. In your peripheral vision you can make out a small blinking green light, letting you know all is safe and sound with the electronic KERS system. It’s a detail repeated on the roof fin of the FXX K, further adding to the cutting-edge feel.
The steering wheel is not unlike that of the LaFerrari, albeit with the horn button replaced with a big, bright red stitched 'K', for KERS. The Manettino switch is now split to control a four-stage traction control system, as opposed to the standard Wet/Sport/Race setup you see on the likes of the 458 Speciale.
The FXX K is likely the most technologically advanced Ferrari car ever to be offered to the (admittedly meticulously vetted) public. It feels almost insanely fast, above and beyond a level I had really expected and, like the LaFerrari, delivers just the right blend of technology and emotion. Owners should consider themselves very lucky indeed.
You can read all about Ferrari's XX projects, as well as more about the FXX K in issue 212 of evo magazine - on sale now.