There are several things to take into consideration when choosing a business for your Ferrari transmission repair needs.
Although clutch replacements and services such as PIS (point of slippage) adjustments are a routine part of Ferrari ownership, internal transmission failures are not commonplace. As a result, many places you would expect to have Ferrari transmission repair experience actually have none.
Surprisingly, most Ferrari dealers send customer transmissions out to specialized repair shops or racing shops for repair. This typically results in very long lead times, long repair durations and expensive repair bills. The same is true for many independent Ferrari repair facilities. They will either farm out the work to someone else or attempt to add to what little experience they possess on your transmission.
Searching through major transmission repair shops can be dicey. Most of the large chains make most of their income servicing and repairing the major automobile brands and depend on fast turnaround in order to generate a profit. It does not make sense for them financially to try to come up to speed on a new transmission type they may see once a year.
Another issue is the specific tools and measurement devices needed to repair Ferrari transmissions.
Since most Ferrari models have their engines located in the middle of the car ("mid engine"), the transmission is actually a "transaxle" and requires special tools to remove and replace the components. These tools are very expensive and add to the increased ramp up costs to enter the Ferrari transmission repair realm.
The following criteria should be met when selecting your Ferrari transmission repair facility.
1. THEY NEED TO HAVE FERRARI TRANSMISSION REPAIR EXPERICNCE
Although this sounds obvious, it really is a necessity. Make sure the shop can provide photos of recent transmission repair work and/or references. You don't want to be a guinea pig.
2. THEY NEED TO HAVE NON FERRARI TRANSMISSION REPAIR EXPERIENCE
The shop needs to have enough general transmission repair experience to be able to deal with any contingency. Ultimately, you would prefer to have the shop experienced with racing transmissions as the demands placed on the components are considerably greater, requiring tighter tolerances and more sophisticated procedures.
3. THEY NEED TO HAVE MACHINING FACILITIES
The shop needs to be able to send parts out to be machined, or to have the capability to machine components. Ideally, the transmissions repair shop would have a machine shop on site. A technician with experience running a mill and a lathe is generally better equipped to ensure that the repair work is complete and accurate, even if the project requires custom work. At times even the OEM parts are not manufactured to tolerance, and placing sub par components into a transmission can often be met with disastrous results.
4. THEY NEED TO HAVE REALISTIC LEAD AND TURNAROUND TIMES
Typically, when a repair shop gives you a lead time or a turnaround time of several weeks to complete your repair, they are simply too busy. However, they don't want to send you to someone else for fear that they may lose your business. Even a comprehensive Ferrari transmission rebuild should not take more than two or three days, not including waiting for parts.
5. THEY NEED TO HAVE REALISTIC PRICES
Outrageous pricing for specific Ferrari transmission repairs is often an indicator of lack of experience. The shop should already know exactly how long a specific repair is going to take, and generally how long an unspecified repair should take. Even if the cause of the issue is not known, the shop should be well versed in providing a proper diagnosis of the problem.