1998 Ferrari 550 Maranello - Introduction
Performance at no compromise
The 550 Maranello is Ferrari's intepretation of the
12-cylinder berlinetta, with a front engine and a
pronounced sports personality, for the 21st century.
The brief given to the technicians was particularly
demanding: design and build a car able to meet the needs
of Ferrari customers looking for driving emotions and
exciting performance, who do not want to forego
driveability or comfort. Customers attracted by
state-of-the-art technical proposals from a company
which has always treated design as an aesthetic solution to
the demand for performance, and has always built its cars
with sophisticated craftmanship.
by Marc J. Rauch
Ferrari's introduction of it's spectacular new Maranello incorporated three
events on Friday and Saturday, April 18th & 19th. The weekend started with
a semi formal reception at the Petersen Museum in Los Angeles - which all
TACH viewer's will remember was also the site of Hornburg Jaguar's
introduction of the XK8. The well attended reception, which was hosted by
the LA chapter of the Boy Scouts, kicks off a six month Ferrari exhibition
at the "Petersen". On hand were a couple dozen of the most famous
Ferrari's ever built, driven, and raced.
At 9am Saturday morning, Ferrari's formal press conference introducing the
Marranello took place at Ferrari North America's Beverly Hills
headquarters. Ferrari trotted out it's biggest executives and
personalities for the launch, including Sr. Pinin Farina. Most notable
among the press/spectators, was television's Jerry Seinfeld. Of course, it
made me wonder why his auto fanatic buddy Jay Leno wasn't there, but then I
seemed to remember that Leno might be performing in Las Vegas this weekend.
The third part of the overall Maranello introduction began with a short
parade of Maranellos over to Beverly Hills famed Rodeo Drive, the site of
the BH Concours d' Elegance. Many of the best Ferraris from the "Petersen"
were transported to the car show for public display. Additional incredible
specimens were provided by the local Ferrari Owners Club. Celebrities
included film/TV funnyman Kenneth Mars and director Sidney Lumet.