Last week, we learned that Ferrari was taking a long, hard look at hybrid drivetrains as a way to improve the performance of its line of supercars when a less-than-ideal amount of traction is present. While Ferrari's patent documents didn't mention environmental concerns as a reason to investigate hybrids, it seems likely that the issue is at least on the minds of Italian automaker's engineers. But it isn't the only technology Ferrari is developing in an effort to build more efficient vehicles that don't sacrifice performance.
A search of Europe's patent database system shows that Ferrari has recently submitted proposals for a new twin-turbo design for V-shaped engines with six, eight, ten or twelve cylinders. Of course, twin-turbo engines have been done hundreds of times before (including by Ferrari back in 1980s and early '90s), so its the arrangement of the two turbochargers along with all the associated plumbing required to make it all work that the Italian automaker is seeking to patent.
The drawing submitted with the application shows an eight-cylinder engine with two equally-sized turbochargers nestled inside the V of the engine block and cylinder heads. The system would use one turbocharger at low engine speeds and would only use the second turbocharger for maximum power and torque when required. Click here to view the actual patent application.
[Source: European Patent Office via Autocar]