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Ferrari launches quarter-million-dollar book

Signed: The first copy of the ‘Diamonte’ edition Opus on the first leg of its world tour, seen here at Zagame Ferrari in Melbourne.

Italy’s Prancing Horse brand unveils the ‘Official Ferrari Opus’, priced up to $275K

Ferrari logo25 Mar 2011

FERRARI has taken lavish merchandising to another level, releasing a book detailing the complete history of the Prancing Horse for the price of a house in the outer suburbs. The Enzo ‘Diamante’ edition of The Official Ferrari Opus has a handcrafted, red leather cover inlaid with 32.3 carats of VVS-rated rare white diamonds and costs a staggering $275,000.

One copy out of the entire print-run of 20 has been made available to the Australian public, with the eventual buyer going into a draw with other buyers around the world to win an actual ex-Formula One Ferrari racecar. Allocations of the ‘Diamante’ have been limited to one book for each of the 20 countries chosen.

Copy number one of the ‘Diamante’ edition is in Melbourne as part of the Italian supercar maker’s global ‘Journey to Maranello’, which will see it visit every F1 grand prix in the 2011 season.

Each stop will see it signed by various motorsport luminaries before being auctioned off for charity at the end of the year. Ron Walker, chairman of the Australian Grand Prix Corporation, was the first person the sign the copy outside of Ferrari.

Creative director of the book’s publishing company Opus, Zenon Texeira, told GoAuto the book had “more or less been guaranteed US$1 million already, for a reserve.”

Three other variations of the Opus will also be available to Ferrari connoisseurs, available in limited numbers and starting at just over $3500.

 center imageLeft: Ron Walker, chairman of the Australian Grand Prix Corporation, signs copy number one.

The ‘Enzo’, like its supercar namesake, is limited to a print-run of only 400. The book is resented in a black carbon-fibre clamshell adorned with the world-famous Ferrari racing shield and comes personally signed by all living Ferrari world champions on an individually numbered, silver-foiled sheet.

This edition, which is also available with a bookstand designed by famous interior designers Candy & Candy, costs $34,925 – a few dollars more than the price of a Toyota Camry.

The ‘Cavallino Rampante’, with a print-run of just 500, comes with signatures of “Ferrari greats, past and present”, while the cover is adorned with a genuine Ferrari badge as seen on the brand’s road cars. This edition costs $6545.

The ‘Classic’, with an availability of 4100 and costing $3520, is presented in a silk-cloth covered clamshell case with a silver-foiled signature sheet signed by current Ferrari F1 drivers Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa.

Australian allocations are not yet confirmed for any of the three versions, but all versions, including the ‘Diamante’, contain the same content.

Each has 852 pages, 200,000 words and more than 2000 pictures, many of which were either specially commissioned or have come from Ferrari’s records and none of which have previously been published.

The opus includes details of every road and race car Ferrari has ever produced, as well as every driver ever contracted by the company, with comments from company founder Enzo Ferrari and current Ferrari chief Luca di Montezemolo, as well as an interview with Niki Lauda.

There is also a stage-by-stage tour of the company’s “Maranello dream factory” and insights from current Formula One drivers Alonso and Massa.

Creative advisor of The Official Ferrari Opus, and former Ferrari communications and brand management director, Antonio Ghini, says that “Opus is not a book it's a concerto. A triumphant opera whose score is made up of cars, technology, history and achievements, and whose heroes will live on forever. Opus, like Ferrari, is a unique experience.”

GoAuto spoke with the general manager for Ferrari in Australia and New Zealand, Kevin Wall, ahead of the main book launch tonight in Melbourne about who will be the likely buyers of the publication.

“I suspect the principle buyers will be Ferrari buyers. There are some people that aren’t your traditional buyers, people who are collectors, or people into art, or into photography. But for sure the group we have this evening are Ferrari tragics through and through.” Mr Texeira revealed Opus planned to produce an “entry version” of the unprecedented publication before the end of this year. This version would have in the vicinity of 400 pages and retail for around $US300. An iPad/ iPhone app will also become available.

The book – or should we say ‘concerto’ – can now be ordered through Ferrari dealers in Australia and New Zealand.

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