Ferrari died in 1988 at age 90. He founded the company that produces some of the world's fastest and most expensive cars.
Police in Nuoro on the island of Sardinia told a news conference that a gang had planned to snatch the body and demand a ransom from the Ferrari family or the company, Reuters and Italian news outlets reported.
Authorities said the plot was discovered during an investigation into arms and drug trafficking. Helicopters and parachute regiment officers were used to execute 34 arrest warrants.
Ferrari's body is interred above ground in a family mausoleum in Modena, near the Ferrari plant at Maranello in central Italy. Gang members had allegedly conducted several inspections of the burial site to plan the operation.
The Ferrari founder has been in the news a lot recently. Two movie biopics are coming out, in which Robert De Niro and Hugh Jackman will each play the racing great.