You say To­mante, I say ...

Townsville Bulletin - - Nurrse -

YES, it’s a laugh­able name. But the per­for­mance of the Tor­nante isn’t to be snick­ered at. The two-seat, mi­dengined rocket is the pro­posed sec­ond road-go­ing model from Ger­man-based Gumpert — which if you hadn’t no­ticed is also a strange name — af­ter its Apollo and a line of track cars. The Tor­nante — it’s ap­par­ently Ital­ian for ‘ hair­pin bend’ — gets a 520kW bi-turbo 4.2-litre V8 Audi en­gine and Tip­tronic gear­box with pad­dle shifters. The body is by Tour­ing Superleggera — which means it moly steel space frame, car­bon panel de­sign. And it also means it looks sexy, of course. Roland Gumpert — pre­vi­ously a top ex­ec­u­tive with Audi in China — re­tains a strong link with Audi and ex­clu­sively uses its driv­e­trains. Gumpert Sport­wa­gen­man­u­fak­tur was started in 2004 and uses the tech­ni­cal as­sis­tance of Audi, the Tech­ni­cal Univer­sity of Mu­nich and the In­gol­stadt Univer­sity of Ap­plied Sci­ences. They have as­sisted with the con­struc­tion, com­puter sim­u­la­tions and wind tun­nel tests. Gumpert has al­ready made a hy­brid ver­sion of the Apollo. And there are plans afoot to re­peat the ex­er­cise in 2012, but this time us­ing the Tor­nante con­cept as the donor car.

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