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Ferrari, the legendary Italian car maker, resists spreading its core activities among different locations. Its corporate facility in Maranello, Italy, is home to passenger-car development, race-team management, technician training and other operations. And the complex is adjacent to a fully equipped test track. The conservative “one location” approach enables a lot of high-tech development:
Drivers from Ferrari’s Formula One racing team can test passenger cars on the racetrack and give their expert feedback.
Mechanics, who will soon be sent to Ferrari dealerships, learn advanced skills in aluminum fabrication and welding by working on race cars that use ultra-advanced materials.
The single location speeds the technology transfer from race cars to passenger cars. Example: Ferrari began installing Formula One-style paddle-shifted transmissions on its passenger cars before other manufacturers.
Lesson: It might cost more to bundle different operations under one roof, but the payback might be worth it.
—Adapted from “Men in Red,” Peter Egan, Road & Track magazine.