Aspid Cars has released the first dramatic images of its new GT-21 Invictus, which features a distinctive semi open wheel appearance at the front of the car. The multi-million Euro project will create up to 200 hi-tech jobs and builds on advanced lightweight technologies developed for the Aspid Super Sport technology demonstrator unveiled at previous motor shows. Discussions are nearing completion with investors to determine the most suitable manufacturing location. Both cars are expected to enter production within two years.
"The GT-21 Invictus complements the Aspid Super Sport, but is bigger and more powerful," says the car's chief designer and company founder Ignacio Fernández Rodriquez. "It has been a challenging styling exercise, but fortunately we have a really talented design team in the company. They have done an excellent job evoking the values of the company in the car."
"Aspid Cars in the vanguard of technological and lightweight vehicle development and we needed to convey this in the design. We also needed an element of aggressiveness to reveal our motor sport credentials. The design brief also demanded that we portray the elegance and beauty required for a premium car."
"From a visual perspective and to set us apart, we needed to retain an element of the unique design form of an open wheel car as characterised by the Aspid Super Sport. This presented by far the biggest challenge in terms of packaging the interior volume for the driver and passengers, but we've successfully achieved this and have therefore maintained our unique visual identity, so the car is perceived as an Aspid the instant it's seen."
The Aspid GT-21 Invictus is bigger and less compromised for interior space compared with the Aspid Super Sport, significantly increasing the level of comfort for the driver and passengers. It is more powerful and more technologically advanced thereby maintaining the company's reputation for designing cars with a phenomenal power-to-weight ratio, significant CO2 reducing capability through lightweight efficiency, combined with sublime road handling. The GT-21 employs the same chassis design that weighs a mere 80 kg in the Super Sport, which still sets an industry benchmark. The GT-21 Invictus styling has been undertaken by IFR Automotive, which is also responsible of the design and engineering of the Aspid Super Sport which preceded it.
"The Aspid GT-21 Invictus represents a new generation of Gran Turismo fit for the 21st century" says Fernández. "With a weight that is less than 990kg when dry, the car features the latest generation BMW V8 engine capable of delivering 450 horsepower. It also incorporates a new generation of sports car hybridization, which increases the dynamic performance of the vehicle while being respectful of the environment. A lot of the technology we've developed will transfer to other road vehicles"
The Aspid GT-21 Invictus will offer the same astonishing acceleration as the Super Sport, reaching 100km/h (62mph) in less than three seconds, but with a higher maximum speed exceeding 300km/h (187mph) and a cornering ability in terms of g forces that similarly sets a new class benchmark. High speed stability and performance is enhanced through efficient aerodynamics. The dimensions are those of a GT: 4.447mm long, 1,883mm wide and a height of 1,226mm. The Invictus is aimed squarely at the premium sports car market and production will be limited to 250 a year to retain its exclusivity.
"Aspid Cars is inspired by the motorsport and aerospace industries," says Fernández. "Their advanced lightweight technologies have been applied to our new GT, which is first and foremost a high performance road car."
The manufacturing processes and suppliers for the Aspid GT-21, being from aerospace and motorsport industries, are used to producing components at high levels of precision in small batches or even as unique parts. The materials employed include aerospace grade aluminium, ultra-light high-strength steels, and composites. The unique design of the car, choice of materials and manufacturing process ensure that every Aspid can be tailored to each individual customer.
Says Fernández: "Each car will be custom made and hand built in its own production bay. There is no production line as such. Each client can choose more than 100 different options, and most customers will want to visit the factory during the build of their personalised car."
Each car will be handed over to the customer at the factory by the team of engineers and technicians who build it. Each customer will also receive a special book signed by the factory team illustrating the assembly sequence.
Customers will be able to purchase the car from an elite group of 20 dealers across Europe, some of which have yet to be selected, able to deliver the high standard of sales and aftersales service. As well as maintaining the vehicle the dealer network will also help organise Aspid branded events and entertainment.
The configuration of each car will be tailored to suit the precise requirements of each customer, giving them the option, for example, to adapt the geometry and the electronics to their individual needs and personal taste. The customer may at any time request the Aspid engineering department to change the car's geometry and electronic settings for different needs.
"This means that in addition to aesthetic customization of the vehicle, the client can also customize its ride and handling characteristics to their own requirements," says Fernández, who was previously a race engineer as well as being an automotive engineer and car designer. "We aim to offer a unique and unforgettable experience when a customer buys one of our sports cars. We believe our factory model and our relationship with each customer will be unique and set a new standard in the market. It will be more like the relationship experienced between a professional race driver and his race engineer and race team. We're very aware that every customer will be an ambassador for the brand, hence this close relationship which we aim to nurture."
"The GT-21 Invictus is a significant step forward for the Aspid brand," adds Fernández. "We're building on our experience of developing a high performance road and race car and technology demonstrator, which has helped us to establish IFR Automotive as an engineering consultancy. We have invested significantly in developing the technology and understanding the market for our new and exclusive road car. The GT is longer than the Super Sport by 700 mm and oriented towards a radical sports car segment of the market requiring larger dimensions, an 8-cylinder engine, and dual-clutch transmission actuated by F1-style shift paddles on the steering wheel, which is also significantly easier to get in and out of the car. It also has more space inside the cabin and luggage compartment."
Fernández says the Invictus represents the first GT "semi open wheeler" with a 2+2 passenger configuration and rear-wheel drive: "It has a strong visual element to help identify the Aspid open-wheel design language, where you can see all the beauty and technological excellence used in the wheel in conjunction with the suspension arms and their oval shape, dual brake callipers and their unique double discs, complemented by the front wings which also make a smart and aggressive statement of our intentions."
"The GT-21 brings together the most advanced technologies yet introduced to this market as presented previously in the Super Sport, which helped us test the water. It introduces a compendium of new technologies specifically developed for this new model, which enhances our understanding of cars generally and their continual evolution as machines of even greater efficiency than we've ever seen before."
"We aspire to build Aspid Cars as a brand representing design innovation and technological leadership, which through IFR Automotive can be applied to passenger, commercial and off highway vehicles," says Fernández. "We've already introduced into the market our technologies to small series cars, motorbikes, buses and coaches."
Other technology included in the Aspid GT-21 Invictus already applied in the Super Sport includes the integration into the steering wheel of the most important driver primary functions and displays. The elimination of switches and buttons and the introduction of a new electrical architecture and electronic system, integrating multimedia with the control systems of the car, facilitate previously unseen features. Aspid has also revolutionized its cars brake system with a unique design that changes the old principle where heat is accumulated by the disks to swiftly dissipating it in order to achieve class leading braking performance with extraordinary resistance to fade. This performance is comparable to conventional and carbon-carbon brakes, but without the problem of having to warm them up.
The suspension arms in cold resistant aerospace extruded aluminium reduce the weight of the un-sprung mass, which together with the super-solid and high performance ALEXCOM chassis, which weighs less than 90kg, delivers a vehicle that can set new standards for innovation, lightweight technology and excellent vehicle dynamics.
"Aspid Cars represents a unique business model driven by a high level of passion," says Fernández. "The GT-21 is a lifestyle model closely connected to the exciting world of sports cars and the unmistakable sense of freedom and emotions felt when driving a machine with the highest levels of performance. The company is also driven by technology and design, with a boundless obsession for craftsmanship and a passion for building something truly unique."
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