Ferrari Promises Electric Means ‘Even More Unique’ Cars

By Reuters
Reuters
Reuters
June 16, 2022 Updated: June 16, 2022

MARANELLO, Italy—Electric and hybrid models should make up 80 percent of Ferrari’s sales by 2030, the luxury carmaker told investors on Thursday, vowing to produce “even more unique” cars as it makes the expensive shift to zero-emission driving.

“We believe we can use the electric engine to enhance the performance of our cars,” Chief Executive Benedetto Vigna said on Thursday as he unveiled the company’s long-awaited new business plan.

Like other sports carmakers, Ferrari’s challenge goes beyond just the huge capital investments needed to develop electric models that can match the high performance of their fossil-fuel forebears—today’s electric vehicle (EV) batteries cannot deliver the sustained power of a combustion engine sports car.

Ferrari and its rivals also sell an emotional experience to wealthy customers currently centered on the throaty roar of that powerful engine. So as it goes electric, Ferrari must ensure its high-net-worth customers and investors are along for the ride.

“Everything we do will always focus on being distinctively Ferrari,” company chairman John Elkann said in opening remarks. “The opportunity set of electrification and electronics will allow us to make even more unique cars.”

In the meantime, Ferrari said it would unveil its first-ever sport-utility vehicle—powered by its hefty, gas-guzzling trademark 12-cylinder engine—this September.

Vigna confirmed the Italian carmaker’s plans to launch its first electric model in 2025, and Ferrari said it would launch 15 new models from 2023 to 2026.

The company expects fully-electric cars will make up 5 percent of sales in 2025 and 40 percent in 2030, Vigna said. Hybrid models should rise to 55 percent of sales in 2025 from 20 percent in 2021, before dropping to 40 percent in 2030.

Vigna said Ferrari would develop and build its own electric motors, inverters, and battery modules for its electric models on a new assembly line at its plant in Maranello, Italy, while outsourcing non-core components to partners.

He said the carmaker is working with battery makers to research the next generation of solid-state batteries, which could store more energy than conventional batteries today, for its electric models.

Faced with looming bans on fossil-fuel vehicles in Europe and China, major automakers have committed to spend more than $250 billion through 2025 on the shift to electrification, according to industry estimates.

Ferrari said it expects to invest 4.4 billion euros ($4.58 billion) by 2026, most of that on product development, while delivering EBITDA (core earnings) of 2.5-2.7 billion euros (around $2.63-$2.85 billion) by that year. Ferrari’s current guidance for 2022 is for an adjusted EBITDA of 1.65–1.70 billion euros (around $1.74-$1.79 billion).

The carmaker expects a cumulated free cash flow of 4.6–4.9 billion euros (around $4.85-$5.17 billion) from 2022 to 2026.

Customers and investors both like what Ferrari does today, with a long order book for cars that start from over 200,000 euros.

Shares in Ferrari have been almost flat in the past 12 months, versus an 18 percent drop for the European auto index and a 13 percent drop for the luxury index.

By Giulio Piovaccari and Nick Carey

Reuters