September 28, 2023

Prancing horses and preening: Ferrari Factory Museum

By Jim Mathers in Maranello

It was a fitting start. A bus pulled up and a bunch of young Italian men, most of them sporting a Mattia Binotto hairstyle, jumped out, casually flicked their hair back and posed for a group photo under the Ferrari sign. They then scampered towards us to join the short queue to enter the Maranello Ferrari Museum. A block away, a Ferrari engine roared to life as a visitor jumped into the passenger seat for a paid ‘test drive’.

We’d decided to have a gander at the larger museum at Maranello. There’s also an Enzo Ferrari Museum in Modena (Maranello is about about 30 mins from Modena). It’s a bit smaller but no less fancy, as you’d expect from Ferrari. But the museum at Maranello has more of a focus on production racing and Formula 1 cars, which piqued our interest. As we were staying in Modena, we briefly visited the Enzo Ferrari Museum but that was mainly to catch the shuttle bus to Maranello after having a quick and very decent machiatto in the resident cafe to kick start the day. 

You can easily do the museum at Maranello in an hour and a half. 

There’s a special display covering Scuderia-Ferrari’s 90 years in F1, with several cars featured, including the championship cars of Schumacher and Raikonnen. 

You can also wander amongst several red or yellow Ferrari supercars, including the GTO, F40, F50 and Ferrari Enzo. There is some fine machinery here. 

For 30 euros you can sign up for a go on one of four F1 simulators, after you’ve drooled over the fine cars in the museum. A 10-minute ‘drive’ on the simulator includes three minutes of instruction. Plenty of people gather to watch, so you can have a race day-like audience cheering on your perfectly executed high-speed crashes. 

There is, of course, the obligatory merch shop. You can pick up a pair of Ferrari-branded espresso cups for 30 euros or a nice Ferrari t-shirt for 80 euros. They also sell Ferrari leather jackets but the purchase of one of these might require you to first mortgage your house. 

If you like fine cars, and Ferraris in particular, a visit to Maranello’s house of prancing horses is worth the effort. Entry costs 22 euros, or you can buy a combined ticket to both museums for 30 euros. You can add a factory and track tour for 20 euros (you stay in the bus). The shuttle bus between the two venues costs 12 euros return. 

Now freelancing, Jim Mathers was
managing editor of RACQ's
The Road Ahead for nearly
25 years. He's also pretty
 handy on the guitar.

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