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Mike Stevens | Feb 6, 2009

Approximately every half-dozen years, the collective pants of car enthusiasts tighten perceptibly. That's because Ferrari has a six-year model cycle for its cars. Ferrari's F430 was released in 2004, and so, with only one year to go, many are expecting to see its replacement in concept form gracing Motor Show stands in the latter half of this year.

Rumour is rampant on what features the car will contain, but an 'embiggened' version of Ferrari's new direct injection V8, launched in the Ferrari California and mated to a similar dual-clutch gearbox, seems highly likely.

F450 also rolls off the tongue quite well; better, perhaps, and more likely than the the F470 tag others are speculating may be the engine's new displacement.

Ferrari Ascari design study from 2005 "New Concepts of the Myth" design challenge

As for what other cutting-edge technologies the car will sport, it is even harder to say. The Mille Chilli concept had a hybrid drivetrain using regenerative brakes to power the KERS system that is starting to appear in F1. With a focus on green motoring, and Ferrari's tradition of introducing F1 technology to the road, something similar may appear.

The rumour-mill has the most likely preview for the finished car at the Frankfurt Motor Show in October, with deliveries starting at the beginning of 2010. In preparation, you may wish to start loosening your trousers now.

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