We see the electric era as an opportunity, Ferrari Boss Elkann says
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By Giulio Piovaccari
MILAN - Despite the fact that its legend was built on high-revving petrol engines, Ferrari’s chairman says that the sportscar maker is welcoming the shift to electric powertrains and is confident of retaining its lead in the market for high performance cars.
The European Union last month proposed an effective ban on the sale of new petrol and diesel cars from 2035 as part of its measures to combat global warming, posing a challenge to carmakers that have made powerful engines a key selling point.
But Ferrari Chairman and acting CEO John Elkann (who also chairs the Stellantis Group) told analysts on Monday that the company saw the change in technology as an opportunity.
"We see the regulation as welcome," Elkann said, as Ferrari stuck to its main 2021 targets after reporting second-quarter core profits just ahead of expectations.
"The opportunity set by electrification, electronics and other technologies that are coming available will allow us to make even more distinct and unique products," he said.
Elkann, the scion of Italy's Agnelli family which controls Ferrari through its investment company Exor, was speaking weeks before new CEO - technology industry veteran Benedetto Vigna - takes the helm on September 1.
One of Vigna's tasks could be to forge new partnerships, along the lines of Ferrari's existing tie up with Britain's Yasa, now part of Daimler, to help with the shift to an electric era, Elkann said.
"We believe that within the industry and more importantly, outside of our industry, we are going to benefit much from partnerships and joint programmes," he said.
On Monday, the company reported a tripling in adjusted core earnings (EBITDA) for the second quarter to 386 million euros (R6.6 billion) as shipments recovered from pandemic-hit trading in the same period last year. That was just ahead of analysts' mean forecast of 373 million euros.