One of the most significant innovations on the 599 GTO is the close correlation between the chassis set-up, which is close to the handling limit, and the input from the electronic controls which are developed to increase overall levels of performance. Since the very earliest states of the two cars’ development, Maranello’s engineers worked to ensure that these two areas of the car would be seamlessly integrated thus pushing responsiveness to the limit. The result is, of course, superlative driving involvement as well as faster lap times.
Apart from new springs and a stiffer rear anti-roll bar, the car also features a second generation magnetorheological suspension control system (SCM2). The suspension works in tandem with the VDC (Vehicle Dynamic Control) and latest-generation F1-Trac traction control. This makes the car extremely responsive to driver inputs – thanks in part to the adoption of a very direct steering ratio – but also very stable under braking, sharper on turn-in, more precise in cornering and quicker out of corners.
The 599 GTO’s aerodynamics have benefited significantly from Ferrari engineers’ experience in F1 and with the 599XX which allowed downforce to be greatly increased without impacting on drag. Thanks to solutions transferred from the track car to the road-going version, the GTO generates downforce of 144 kg at 200 km/h. The entire car was honed, including the front, the sides, the flat underbody and cooling flows. In the latter instance, the GTO can count on improved ducting to the brake discs and pads, and the adoption of wheel doughnuts – a disc positioned outside the brake disc that ensure that hot air exiting the wheelarch stays as close to the body of the car as possible to reduce drag.
Work on the nose of the car was aimed at reducing the width of the wake generated by the front and thus reduce drag. The front spoiler incorporates a separate lower wing that increases downforce at the front of the car and increases the flow of cooling air to the oil radiator. On the flanks there’s a new sill design with a more pronounced leading edge that improves the efficiency of the central section of the underbody. The underbody itself incorporates a new, lower front section with diffusers ahead of the front wheels to optimise downforce, and a new double-curve rear diffuser.