Ferrari 360 Battery Cut Off Switch Autopsy

Following on from my post on replacing the cut off switch, I thought it would be a good idea to cut a failed one open to see what was inside and try to determine the mode of failure.

Here’s the switch looking fairly ordinary…


The back looks a little corroded…


The rubber boot can be pulled off to reveal a couple of rivets holding the two halves in place (note the manufacturing date of 2001).


The rivets can be easily ground off.


Finally, there is an e-clip on the rear that needs to be removed before the switch can be separated.


The switch itself is fairly simple – the two terminal posts are attached to the two metal square plates in the base.  These are surrounded in a white ceramic insulator.  The top half of the switch contains a bar that turns 90 degrees – in one position it contacts with the two square plates.

Note that the two metal strips on top of the white ceramic don’t appear to serve any purpose other than to provide a surface for the bar to act upon.

As can be seen from the photo, the inside of the switch is as rotten as an MP’s expenses claim.  This is because the rear of the switch is exposed to the elements behind the bulkhead.  The rubber boot only stops moisture from entering the front compartment – it doesn’t protect the switch in any way.

If I still owned a 360 then I would schedule replacement of this switch as part of a preventative maintenance program.

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6 thoughts on “Ferrari 360 Battery Cut Off Switch Autopsy

  1. Hello Aldous, thanks for all the information in your blog.

    I have a 360. The original cut off switch saved my car for the fire. It cut the current when a positive starter cable touch the chasis in a fortuit short circuit. The smoke were un the front, and I change two times the switch until I found de problem!!

    I thing, the switch white material is like intumescent coating and cuy off automatically when hot.

    Please, tell me your opinion
    Best regards

    1. The white material appears to be a plastic coated ceramic. It certainly isn’t a thermal fuse – to prove this have a look at the video in the link below. I apply a very hot blow torch to the white material and all that happens is that the surface bubbles up a little….

  2. All CFx xxx-xx 0 NODES have a keep alive E prom. The data will be present to the NEXT drive key on (if present!!!) TCU parameters – ECU parameters – ABS etc… Now long story short as time passes this hardware becomes nonfictional as well. Ferrari have a bulletin from 2004, about Not to install in NEW manufactured cars with the switch, do to: As you turn off the power the memo will have it safe in the Eprom. ONLY if it is any good… So if you have a bad E Prom in your old NODE cutting power will cause problems as the learning time will not be the same !!! and it my need more time to re learn the data… Solution: battery maintainer.

    GTE Engineering

  3. Hi Aldous, what is the size (diameter) of the binding posts of the OEM switch?

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