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GTS 4.1 V Ghepardo Concept
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  Bizzarrini GTS 4.1 V Ghepardo Concept

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Country of origin:Italy
Produced in:2006
Author:Wouter Melissen
Last updated:May 01, 2006
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Click here to download printer friendly versionAt the 2005 Geneva Motorshow another elusive name was added to the long list of brought back from the dead car manufacturers; Bizzarrini. As usual the 'revived' marque had no connection with the original with the exception of the name. Designed and constructed by a newly formed company called VGM Motors, a striking coupe was on display at Geneva to show the sports car manufacturer was back. To ensure all visitors were aware of the new company's inspiration an original Bizzarrini 5300 GT was displayed next to the 'Bizzarrini GTS 4.4 V' show car.

Although the new car dwarved the 5300 GT next to it, there were a number of design cues shared by the two. One of the original Bizzarrini's most typical feature was the location of the Chevrolet V8, which was so far back in the chassis that the coils had to be accessed through panels in the dashboard. True to the original, the new car's engine was in a similar location, but now of German origin. It was an Alpina tweaked BMW powerplant, which was mated to a six speed automated gear box. It was estimated to be capable of a 360 km/h top speed and sub four seconds 0-60 times.

At the time the VGM Motors representitive indicated production could start early in 2006, but after the Geneva Show we heard nothing from the Italian company for well over a year. That was until the 2006 Villa d'Este concours d'elegance when a ferocious sounding Bizzarrini was driven through the Villa Erba park followed by a much more civilized sounding 5300 GT. It was hard to say if it was intentional, but the car seemed unable to manouvre without shredding up the grass. Obviously the year of silence was used to carry through some major modifications.

The Alpina engine was replaced by a slightly modified version of Mecachrome's all aluminium V8 engine. Enlarged to 4.1 litre the racing car derived engine was good for 550 bhp at a stunning 10,000 rpm. All this power is transferred to the rear wheels through a six speed transaxle also cast from aluminium. We were told the engineers managed to keep the weight down to 1100 kg by the extensive use of aluminium and other exotic materials. This time round a timeframe for production was not mentioned, but development work seems ongoing.

In its current configuration, the 'Ghepardo' as it was referred to, is still considerably larger than the original, but at least its light weight and incredible engine will catch many enthusiasts' interest. It is seen here in the gardens of Villa Erba.

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