No one really thinks ‘Mexico’ when they reel off car manufacturing countries of note, let alone sports car manufacturers, but an intriguing new sports car that is in the final stages of testing is aiming to change that. The Vuhl 05 – pronounced voo-ul – is an almost bare bones but with some tricks up its sleeve sports car that will be hitting the shores of both the UK and the US sometime in early 2014.
The Vuhl 05 is a super car that is the realization of the long held vision of a pair of race car obsessed siblings who call themselves the Echeverria brothers, who are toting the car as the ultimate ‘sports car for the masses’. It is a minimalist affair, no roof, no windshield, and only the most basic of sports style bucket seats, but it is not a car that is being sold based on its comfort level anyway. for comfort. It is instead, the Echeverrias say, designed for the kind of thrilling speed and real race car experience that most every day drivers have never really experienced before.
At its heart is a 2.0-litre Ford Ecoboost mid mounted in the center of the car. According to one of its creators Iker Echeverria this was not the first engine they considered though. Initially they tested an Audi engine but it turned out to be too heavy and did not have the sound that Iker was looking for. He says that for his car he was hoping emulate the very distinctive engine sounds of the 1970s Cosworths and as it turned out the Ecoboost almost exactly him the effect he was looking for.
In terms of power the Vuhl can crank out 285bhp and 310lb ft of torque. As it is such a light car, with a featherweight aluminium monocoque chassis it also boasts a power to weight ratio of 400bhp per tonne. This will translate as a 0-62 time of 3.7 seconds and a top speed of 152mph. Not the fastest thing in the world, but certainly thrilling enough.
Iker also had another classic in mind when it comes to the car’s handling, stating he hoped that it is like the Lotus Elise, a car that handled a lot like a race car but drives did not actually need not actually need years of Formula 1 experience to handle it proficiently.
Although it is a bare bones car the Vuhl does boost some nifty tech stuff. The primary key for the car not only unlocks the fuel cap holds it open as well, ensuring that your racing whites, should you choose to wear them, remain clean and pristine.
There is also a rather neat camera – an HD camera at that – mounted on the center console. This allows you to film your laps right up until the second you cross the line, or spin off, depending upon your skill level ,and then auto post your epic run, or embarrassing failure, to YouTube with the press of a button.
There is no word yet about the actual price of this car despite the fact that the Echeverrias say that this is a car for the average driver. What that actually translates as in terms of cash still remains to be seen.