Who Are Enzo Ferrari’s 2 Sons, Piero and Dino?

piero ferrari standing in front of a vintage ferrari race car at a museum
Get to Know Enzo Ferrari’s Sons, Piero and DinoGetty Images
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In 1957, Italian automaker Enzo Ferrari faced not only mounting financial difficulty at his namesake company, but also rising family tensions following the death of his firstborn son, Alfredo, and scandalous circumstances surrounding his second, Piero.

This drama is at the core of Ferrari, the biopic about the legendary car magnate now in theaters. The movie stars Adam Driver as Ferrari; Penélope Cruz as his wife, Laura Garello; and Shailene Woodley as his longtime mistress Lina Lardi.

Ferrari focuses on Enzo’s relentless drive for victory in the grueling Mille Miglia race as it explores his relationships with the women he loves and his two children. From his unbreakable bond with Alfredo—his only child with Laura—to his inability to fully embrace Piero as his own, Ferrari’s paternal connections were as complex as the cars that made him famous.

Who was Alfredo “Dino” Ferrari?

Before he became the legendary automaker we know today, Enzo Ferrari was a successful race car driver—making his debut in 1919 and winning multiple Grand Prix races with the Alfa Romeo team. However, he vowed to retire from competition should he have a son and kept his word after his wife, Laura, gave birth to their son, Alfredo Ferrari, on January 19, 1932.

Like his father, Alfredo—nicknamed “Alfredino” or the more concise “Dino”—fell in love with racing. In his 2009 book Go Like Hell: Ford, Ferrari, and Their Battle for Speed and Glory at Le Mans, author A.J. Baime writes that young Dino often accompanied his father in the garages below their home in Italy and at the Modena Autodrome proving ground. Seeing this, Enzo made his son an apprentice and hoped he would become an eventual successor.

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Dino earned an engineering diploma from a local technical institute in Modena and, unlike his father, learned to speak English. Once educated, he reserved an office space near his father and began his work for the growing auto brand—which, by the early 1950s, had expanded into the consumer car market.

While his father was known for having a sharp temper, Dino often knew how to take a calmer approach when it came to business matters. “Papa, don’t let it get you down. Things always right themselves if you only give them time,” he once said, according to Baime.

How did Dino die?

enzo ferrari writing at a desk with a portrait of his son nearby
Enzo Ferrari works at his desk in 1958 next to a portrait of his late son, Alfredo.Getty Images

Although Dino possessed great potential within the family business, he couldn’t escape a debilitating illness that began affecting him as an early teen. Eventually, Baime wrote, doctors diagnosed him with muscular dystrophy that had eaten away at his skeletal muscles. By 1955, 23-year-old Dino could no longer walk properly and was bedridden with failing kidneys.

The detail-driven businessman that he was, Enzo kept meticulous notes on his son’s condition—updating a diary with charts and graphs based on doctors’ reports. When he wasn’t scribbling in his notebook, Enzo spoke with Dino about the latest projects at the Ferrari factory.

Even as he was dying, Dino fixated on cars. His favorite visitor was Ferrari engineer Vittorio Jano, and the two worked with Enzo to design a prototype 1.5-liter racing engine. Enzo completed the special six-cylinder engine just a few months after Dino’s death on June 30, 1956, and named it in his honor.

Dino was laid to rest in the family crypt at the San Cataldo cemetery in Modena. Enzo left Dino’s office untouched following his death and mounted a portrait of his son in his own workspace, creating a shrine of sorts.

In the meantime, Enzo still had an expansive business to run and, now, no heir to take over—or, at least, one that he could acknowledge publicly.

Who is Piero Ferrari?

piero ferrari smiling for photos, he wears a navy blue suit jacket, white collared shirt and red tie
Piero Ferrari inherited a 10-percent stake in and became vice chairman of his father’s car company following Enzo’s death in 1988.Getty Images

As the Ferrari movie illustrates, Enzo and Laura’s relationship had rapidly deteriorated after Dino’s death. A primary reason was Ferrari’s decades-long affair with one of his mistresses, Lina Lardi. On May 22, 1945, Lina gave birth to Ferrari’s second son, Piero Lardi, out of wedlock.

Because divorce was illegal in Italy until the 1970s, Piero couldn’t be formally recognized as Ferrari’s son until Laura’s death in 1978—contrary to the film, which suggests Enzo waited to do so at her behest. As a result, Piero never met his half-brother and didn’t legally take the Ferrari name until 1990.

While Piero’s identity wasn’t widely publicized, those close to him were aware of the connection and came to know him as a dedicated student and worker. After graduating from a technical school in Modena in 1964, he began working for his father at the Ferrari factory in Maranello in 1966. “Any little job he was asking me to do, he was very demanding because he wanted to show other employees that I had no privilege,” Piero told MotorSport Magazine.

Piero learned what he could from the engineers and mechanics around him and showed he belonged—building a bond with his father along the way. “The best time would be after the end of the day, if he had the spare time. He loved very much nice women and good food, and he was always taking me to these different towns, different restaurants, different people. These are nice memories, when he wasn’t talking about work,” he said.

Once Piero was acknowledged as Enzo’s son, he began to assume managerial duties within Ferrari’s racing program. By the mid-1980s, he was effectively in charge of the operation.

Piero ‘did not want to be the king’ of his father’s business

Although Piero had proven himself to be an astute businessman, he had no desire to become head of the company. “I never saw myself as repeating what my father had done. That would have been impossible,” he said. “I did not want to be the king, it’s not in my nature.”

Meanwhile, Enzo’s health grew worse. After selling a 50 percent stake in his company to Fiat almost two decades earlier, he sold another 40 percent share shortly before his death on August 14, 1988, at age 90. Piero inherited his father’s remaining 10-percent stake and became vice chairman of the brand, a role still holds today.

Almost four decades later, the Ferrari name is synonymous with luxury on the road and victory on the track. Its racing program won six Formula 1 championships in an eight-year-stretch starting in 2000 and is still one of the series’ premier teams. The company also reported more than 13,000 consumer cars sold in 2022.

piero ferrari waving and smiling to spectators out of view as romina gingasu smiles and looks left, both wear black jackets and white collared shirts
Piero Ferrari and his wife, Romina Gingasu, in December 2023Getty Images

According to Celebrity Net Worth, Piero is worth an estimated $5.2 billion. Now 78, he is married to 31-year-old Romina Gingasu from Romania and has one daughter, Antonella, from his prior relationship with Floriana Nalin.

In December 2022, Piero established a family trust making Antonella and his two grandsons beneficiaries of his 10-percent stake in the company.

Piero was crucial to the Ferrari movie

Piero played an important part in the new movie, directed by Michael Mann. Lead actor Adam Driver told a British news agency that Piero was “very open about his father’s life, literally opening the doors to his apartment, Enzo’s apartment, his briefcase, everything about him.”

Piero attended the movie’s screening at the Venice Film Festival this August and was apparently pleased with the end result—he said in early December he had watched the film four times already. “It is a nice family story in a difficult moment of life with tragedies, but my father was a winner. He succeeded and realized his dreams,” he said.

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