Ferrari McFerrari Face

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We took an off-the shelf remote control Ferrari 458 italia and converted it into a robot with a camera.

Why would we do this?

Firstly, because we can…. and secondly because we wanted to see if we could make a better version.

The original steering and speed control was 100% or nothing. It had no proportional steering or throttle control.

We thought we could improve this with a micro servo and a pwm motor controller.

Thirdly, we wanted to install a camera and drive it remotely from our computer through the house using an xbox controller.

Finally, because we wanted to see if we can buy off-the-shelf toys with DC motors and robotise them… AND WE DID!!!

This is a video journal of the build.


You can download the code from our github to run the Ferrari.

Download Github

Open the linux terminal and enter the following command.

sudo git clone

Parts needed

Raspberry Pi

The Ferrari uses a Raspberry Pi3B+.

Raspberry Pi Pinout Diagram

2S LiPo Battery

The battery is a 2s (7.4 Volt) LiPo battery with 2200mah. The battery is attached to the shell using velcro. The battery has XT60 connectors.


The unit uses a standard BEC stepdown to power the raspeberry Pi and the motor.


l298n motor controller

A l298n motor controller was used to control the speed on the rear wheels.

Micro Servo

A micro servo was used to control the steering.

Raspberry Pi Camera

A Raspberry Pi camera was used for visual feedback to our computer over our wi-fi network.

Raspberry Pi Camera Board

Xbox controller

An xbox controller was used to drive the Ferrari.

Xbox One Wireless Controller (preowned) - EB Games Australia


Jumper cables, Velcro, Gaffa tape, 3mm nuts and bolts. 3mm standoff kit. USB power cable.


Wire cutters, wire strippers.

Drill and 3mm & 8mm drill bit to drill holes for circuit boards and wires.

Hot glue gun to glue micro servo in steering box.

Screwdriver – Phillips head.


Pin 40 – GPIO 21Blue wire (signal)
Pin 1 – 3V3Red wire (VCC)
Pin 39 – GNDBlack wire (GND)
Pin 11 – GPIO17Signal
Pin 2 – 5VVCC
Pin 9 – GNDGND
Pin 18 – GPIO24IN1
Pin 16 – GPIO23IN2
Pin 22 – GPIO25ENA
VCC outVCC 12V+
Out 1VCC
Out 2GND
Pin 20 – GNDGND

On the l298n motor controller, the shunt pin needs to be removed from ‘ENA’ to allow for the the brown cable from Pin22/GPIO25 from the Raspberry Pi.


Connect the Pi Camera to the Raspberry Pi csi port.

Install Libraries

The following libraries will need to be installed.

Import OpenCV

Install OpenCV on the Raspberry Pi using the guide in the link below.

Connect Xbox controller

To connect the xbox controller and install evdev, follow the guide in the link below.

Run the Ferrari

To run the Ferrari. Connect to the Ferrari over SSH and enter the following commands from the linux terminal.

cd ferrari

A main menu will appear. Chose which system you would like to test or drive the car in manual.

Video Build instructions and operation

We won’t go into the build instructions or operations manual, however we’re happy to share. If you have a question, please comment below or contact us.

Next upgrade

Adding neopixels???

Did it work for you?

If you had an issue, please report it on the our github page.

Continuous Improvement

Do you have an idea how we can make the Ferrari better? If you have a suggestion, please raise an issue on our github…


Marty. Ben K.

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