After a long wait, Ferrari has unveiled its new Le Mans Hypercar, which will compete in the FIA World Endurance Championship next year (WEC). The Maranello squad has chosen the name “499P” to reflect the nomenclature it has used for decades. The “499” refers to each cylinder’s capacity in cubic centimeters, while the “P” stands for prototype. The electrified machine is powered by a 3.0-liter V6 engine with two turbochargers.
Although the six-cylinder engine shares the same 120-degree architecture as the 296 GTB / GT3, Ferrari told Motorsport.com that it is “not the same engine.” Ferdinando Cannizzo, who leads the design and development of the Ferrari Attivita Sportive GT sportscar racing department, stated that the engine is structurally different and that the V6 was chosen for its lightweight and compact nature.
To meet regulations, the mid-rear combustion engine produces a maximum output of 680 horsepower (500 kilowatts). It works in tandem with a front-mounted electric motor rated at 272 hp (200 kW) and powered by a 900-volt battery recharged during deceleration and braking. The engine is mated to a seven-speed sequential transmission and has a combined output of 680 hp (500 kW).
The 499P was revealed at the Ferrari Finali Mondiali in Imola, with Daytona SP3 design cues and a red livery with yellow accents as a throwback to the 312PB of the early 1970s. The two cars will be race numbers #50 and #51, with the former representing the Prancing Horse’s last appearance in top-tier racing at Le Mans. The latter is a frequently used number by Ferrari race cars in GT racing.
The 499P has been tested over 7,500 miles (12,000 kilometers) with two prototypes and will be fully homologated before the end of the year. It will make its motorsport debut in mid-March 2023, during the inaugural WEC round at the Sebring 1000 Miles.