We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again: the petrol era of the motor car is definitely going out with a bang. Amidst the rise of electrification there’s a dizzying array of new ICE sports cars on the way, and at the other end of the spectrum, more and more hyper-expensive, enormously powerful hypercars are coming through the woodwork.
And the best one yet has just been announced. It comes from Gordon Murray Automotive, and it’s called the T.50. Designed by Murray “to the same exacting engineering standards as the driver-focused McLaren F1,” it’s very much a successor to his three-seater supercar. Even down to the layout: it’ll have a central driving position with two passenger seats set slightly further back.
The more you read of the press release, the better it gets. Let’s kick off with the mid-mounted powerplant: it’s a Cosworth-developed, 3.9-litre naturally-aspirated V12 which produces 650bhp and revs to an obscene 12,100rpm. That’s a higher ceiling than the Aston Martin Valkyrie’s 12-banger - another Cosworth design - and although it’s considerably less powerful, it won’t have as much car to punt along - the carbon-tubbed T.50 is to weigh just 980kg.
That engine sends its power to the rear wheels exclusively via a six-speed manual gearbox. That’s a big clue as to this car’s main focus. “I have absolutely no interest in chasing records for top speed or acceleration,” Murray says, adding, “Our focus is instead on delivering the purest, most rewarding driving experience of any supercar ever built – but, rest assured, it will be quick.”
The T.50 will also feature ground effect aerodynamics, thanks to “intelligent management of underbody airflow” and ruddy great fan which literally sucks the car to the floor. Yep, Murray is resurrecting the controversial aero element of his Brabham BT46B ‘Fan Car’, a vehicle banned from F1 after just one race despite the team claiming at the time that the fan bit was just for cooling.
This tremendous list of ingredients all fits into a car that’s just 4380mm long and 1850mm wide - about the same length as a Porsche 718 Cayman and only slightly wider. It is, inevitably, going to be very expensive - the pre-tax price is £2 million.
Gordon Murray Automotive will make 100, which we don’t foresee being terribly difficult to shift. First deliveries will happen in 2022.