It's almost exactly a year to date since we first heard about a Ferrari part-time 4WD system in development, and our motherland- covering amici at Italiaspeed have more on the gadgetry behind it. Dubbed an "insertable" four-wheel-drive system, Ferrari's new clockworks aim to quell the loss of torque associated with disbursing wheelspin to all corners, thereby giving Ferrari drivers the benefits of AWD in adverse weather conditions along with the otherwise superior performance of rear-wheel drive. The system involves an electronically controlled "second clutch," which (stop me if you've heard this one) connects the crankshaft upstream of the gearbox to the fixed-ratio secondary driving wheels, transferring torque to the front wheels when the driving wheels slip. The system can be used for both front- and mid-engine layouts. From the press release, it seems like an elegant solution to a vexing problem, but we'll get back to you when we finish our one-hour correspondence course in mechanical engineering.
11.10.2006 FERRARI DEVELOP "INSERTABLE" FOUR WHEEL DRIVE [Italiaspeed]
Ferrari Developing Part-Time 4WD System [internal]