The Ferrari FF has a silly name. If you go by the official nomenclature, FF is a contraction of Ferrari Four, and therefore spelt out in its entirety, Dh1.2 million gets you a Ferrari Ferrari Four. Not that you'd mistake it for anything else because a) it's got the Italia's furious face, and b) you can hear its unmistakable Ferrari howl way before it rolls into view. But look underneath the skin and you'd understand why Maranello, presumably, deemed it necessary to reiterate the fact that this is indeed a Ferrari.
There are many characteristics that you just wouldn't readily associate with something that sports a Prancing Horse badge. That shape, for a start. Breadvan, Shooting Brake, or whatever term you bandy about, simply put; the FF is an estate. And a ruddy large one at that. At 4,907mm it's 242mm longer than the 599 and nearly an inch bigger (also 50kg lighter) than the already ginormous 612 Scaglietti, which it replaces. It's so huge it should have its own post-code.
The good news though, is that with a wheelbase that's 40mm longer than the 612's, there is a lot more space inside. Four people, with all their appendages intact, can travel in reasonable comfort.
But the biggest un-Ferrari fly in the ointment is the four-wheel drive system. Does that mean the FF sacrifices driving joy for safe travel, when the elements rather that you'd turned around and went home? Nope.
The first thing that you need to know is that the FF isn't four-wheel drive the majority of the time. It's RWD like a proper sporty car should be and power is only sent to the front wheels when the driver mistakes ambition for ability.
You see, instead of having a central differential, channelling the power to all four wheels, the FF has a smaller, ancillary gearbox lodged up at the front — it sends cavallino rampante (that's horsepower to you and me) to the front wheels only in dire circumstances. Such as when you're about to deposit the car into the Armco.
And work well, it does. Unlike most four-wheel drive cars, where you can feel the computers shifting the grunt to the front wheels when necessary, the FF's system works smoothly and efficiently. It operates completely behind the scenes and you'd be hard pressed to tell when the 4WD engages.
But here's the big question, does the FF feel like a proper Ferrari? Oh yes it does.
The steering is characteristically light, and at slow speeds feels a bit vacant in the feel department, but pile on the pace and you know exactly the direction the wheels are facing at any given point.
Then there's that engine. It's 6.3-litres of V12 precision, fuelled by magic and passion. Give it a bootful and the rev needle hunts down the 8,000rpm redline with the ferocity of a pack of hungry wild dogs chasing their prey. However, unlike an Aston V12 which has a macho quality to it, the Fezza's motor sounds like the collective blood-curdling yowls of the aforementioned canines, ran though a distortion pedal.
It is one of the rare few cars that can bend the rules of physics, without feeling emotionally vapid — I'm looking at you, Nissan GT-R. It feels much smaller than it physically is and that's a rare achievement; the only other car that manages this is the Maserati Quattroporte.
However, with 660bhp and 683Nm of torque on its side, the FF is substantially quicker than the Maserati — zero to 100kph is cracked in 3.7 seconds and the speedo will effortlessly top the 334kph mark.
But the best thing about this car is that it comes across as exceedingly cool. If you drive an Italia, you're immediately and understandably compartmentalised as a show-off.
And somehow, despite its monumental physical dimensions and the screaming V12, the FF is an understated car — a feat no supercar has successfully achieved. It's a sensible family runabout one moment — almost, because the boot space is hardly Ikea friendly — and a banzai supercar the next. It's a Ferrari for all occasions. And you can say that again.