Ferrari is an automaker the operates in two spheres: racing and road cars. The company builds the latter to fund the former, but while the two have long operated as fairly separate units, there is plenty of room for overlap. Like its Corse Clienti department.
Established to facilitate privateer racing teams running Ferrari GT cars in various series, the Corse Clienti division also runs the firm’s elite XX development program that allows some of its best customers the opportunity to act as “client test drivers.” In other words, people pay big money – and by big, we mean millions – to test out new equipment developed by Maranello’s skunkworks before it’s implemented on future road cars.
The program started with the Enzo-based FXX back in 2005, which was succeeded by the 599XX in 2009. But like the FXX led to the even more extreme FXX Evoluzione, so has the 599XX. More an upgrade package than a new car, the $250,000 evolution kit includes a bigger front splitter, giant rear wing with moving foils, a 30-horsepower upgrade to 740 and another two years of factory-supported track days.
The most recent was held at Japan’s Suzuka circuit, where the 599XX Evoluzione hit the track for the first time since delivery to its eager new owners. It was also the first time the upgraded track car was run in public, following its debut at the Bologna Motor Show back in December. Of course, now that the 599 range is being phased out, we can’t help but wonder what Ferrari will base its next developmental track car on: the new F12 Berlinetta? The 458 Italia? The upcoming Enzo successor?