The year is 2009. While the whole world is covered with unsold cars, one small scarlet-fever-infected village is holding out against the global downturn. Led by their charismatic chieftain Luca di Montezemolo, the tribe from the tiny settlement of Maranello are giving the other marques a hefty kick up the exhaust. The magic potion that has made their foes despair is the latest set of figures from the village. Rising from the huts of Maranello, we see a plume of smoke that speaks of petrol, rubber and wealth.
In 2008, Ferrari sold 6,587 cars to eager customers. That represents a 2% increase over the previous year. At 26 percent of total sales, the US continues to be the biggest market. Close behind comes Eastern Europe on 23 percent. Profits have risen by 27% to 441 million US dollars and the operating margin is currently running at 17.6%.
Following these record results, CEO Luca di Montezemolo gave his forecast for the coming year: "The economic outlook for 2009 continues to be very uncertain. The crisis is taking a terrible toll on the whole world and it is difficult to say at this stage how things are going to develop." So is this success story set to continue? The whole industry is wondering how Ferrari have managed to do it. Why should the reds (of all people) be in the black?