Ferrari is very much a technology company. The proof is in the fact that they dominated Formula One racing in the late 1990s and into the new millenium. This would not have been accomplished by an organization with anything less than the best engineering.
In addition to giving automotive enthusiasts a holy grail, the Enzo serves as a showcase for the many technological talents of the Ferrari company.
The Enzo chassis is made of carbon fibre and aluminium honeycomb sandwich panels. The use of such exotic materials allows the designers to achieve what would normally be opposing ideals: light weight and strength. As is expected of a high technology company, CAE (Computer Aided Engineering) was used in the design of the chassis. Enthusiast may think of Ferrari as an old world firm with experienced artisans beating sheets of aluminum into submission with hammers and wooden bucks, but the current reality is different. The chassis weighs 92 kg. (202.4 lbs.), 10 kg. (22 lbs.) less than its F50 predecessor.
The brakes for the Ferrari Enzo were developed by Brembo and are made of carbo-ceramic material (CCM). Ferrari has been using brakes made of similar materials in their Formula One efforts but this is the first time it has seen service in a road car. The advantage behind the exotic materials is weight reduction; unsprung weight was reduced by a whopping 12.5 kg. (27.5 lbs.). There is a price for the advantages however. A set of brake pads is said to cost $6,000 and for the rotors the bill is $24,000. Ferrari does claim better reliability with the design. ABS, missing on the F50, is part of the Ferrari Enzo.
To accomodate the wide range of speeds at which the Enzo is driven, active aerodynamic controls are incorporated. At 124 mph, the Enzo generates 738 lb. of downforce which keeps the car on the road during fast cornering. Downforce increases to 1709 lb. at 185 mph. However too much downforce will limit top speed, so as the Enzo approaches its 217 mph terminal velocity, the downforce is reduced to 1290 lb.
Advanced electronics is also on the resume. All major electrical / electronic components talk to each other over a high speed communications link, which can be compared to a computer network. The throttle is controlled electronically. Small transmitters in each wheel relay tire pressure information to recievers located nearby in the wheel wells. The data is then presented to the driver (pilot?) on the dash.