Mazzanti Evantra V8 Aims to Shake up the Italian Supercar Establishment
In the last half-century or so, a handful of automotive start-up companies have been established to build supercars in Italy. Even fewer of these have achieved very much in the way of success and staying power. In fact, we can only think of two: Lamborghini and Pagani.
Unsurprisingly, the principals behind Mazzanti Automobili hope their infantile firm will someday be mentioned in the same breath as those two luminaries, and not the same breath as perennially-troubled, no-longer-with-us nameplates like Iso, De Tomaso and Cizeta. While the company’s first model, the Antas, is based on a front-engine, rear-drive sports or GT car chassis of the customer’s choosing (e.g. Chevrolet Corvette, Maserati GranTurismo, Aston Martin DB9, etc.), the new addition to the Mazzanti lineup, the Evantra V8, will ride on a dedicated mid-engine platform. And boy, are they clothing it in some mean bodywork.
The four small headlights are abutted on two sides by trendy LED running lights, and the taillights receive a similar treatment. In fact, the front and rear styling treatments have a great deal in common if you look closely. In between, you have a typical mid-engine supercar silhouette (albeit with a tail that’s stubbier than most) covered in details like “Coke bottle” rear quarter panels, strong character lines, and more scoops than an ice cream parlor supply warehouse. Interestingly, Mazzanti will build the Evantra V8 body from either carbon fiber or hand-formed aluminum, depending on customer preference (The aluminum body can also be shaped to suit customer taste…or, to be frank, lack thereof.).
The steel chassis is augmented by a roll cage fabricated from chrome-moly tubing, and there are braces tying the engine to the rear suspension pickup points. Stopping duties are handled by Brembo brakes at all four corners (15” rotors and six-piston calipers in front, 14.2” rotors and four-piston calipers in back), and the Evantra V8 connects to the road via R-compound Continental tires affixed to 20” OZ Racing wheels.
That kind of chassis hardware is necessary given the caliber of powertrain hardware it has to rein in. Power comes from an aluminum 7.0L V8 with dry sump oiling and titanium valves and connecting rods. Mazzanti doesn’t acknowledge what this mill is based on (We’d be shocked if it’s something other than the Corvette Z06’s LS7.), but it is happy to talk power and torque figures: 691hp and 625 lb.-ft. Match that with a 6-speed sequential transmission, and you have a package capable of propelling a vehicle to ridiculous velocities ridiculously quickly.
And the numbers Mazzanti gives are suitably ridiculous. Expect to jolt to 62 mph from a dead stop in 3.2 seconds, and max out somewhere north of 217 mph, all while ensconced in an interior outfitted to your exacting specifications with the richest materials, the coolest tech toys and an engine start button mounted on the ceiling. No word on how many hundreds of thousands of dollars you’ll have to part with to make an Evantra V8 your own, but since only five – yes, five – will be made each year, you’ll have a hard time finding a more exclusive new car.