RML Group, an engineering firm based in the UK, has released a new GT road car that is clearly inspired by the 1959 Ferrari 250 GT SWB. Christened with the name RML Short Wheelbase, the car promises to deliver 21st century comfort and convenience with the driving purity of supercars from the past.
Power comes from a front-mounted (longitudinally) 5.5 litre naturally-aspirated V12 engine from Ferrari, tuned to produce 485 PS and 568 Nm of torque. All that power is routed exclusively to the rear wheels via an open-gated six-speed manual gearbox that is also sourced from Ferrari. According to RML, the 0-60 mph (0-96 km/h) sprint is done in 4.1 seconds, with top speed in excess of 300 km/h.
In terms of the exterior styling, the RML model looks very much like the original Ferrari, but modernised with flush door handles, LED projector headlights housed in the old-school circular enclosure, recessed turn signal indicators with tiny air intakes below them, as well as rounded fog lamps at the lower edges of the grille.
There’s also the vented bonnet, quad exhaust exits (now more seamlessly integrated into the lower rear bumper), identical vents behind each wheel fender and stacked LED tail lights. Essentially, it’s almost a carbon copy of the original, but modernised slightly.
Most of the modern creature comforts are found in the cabin. These come in the form of GPS navigation, air conditioning, cubby holes and smartphone pairing functions, all of which have been “discreetly” integrated. RML said the car can even accommodate occupants up to 200 cm tall, and they would sit on exquisitely-trimmed power adjustable seats.
Company CEO Michael Mallock said: “The Short Wheelbase was never conceived to compete, Top Trumps-style, with a typical supercar’s acceleration or top speed. Our car takes a step back from that, and while it’s certainly rapid, our emphasis has always been on capturing a more organic driving experience, with less intervention and more useable performance, while still making it comfortable and convenient enough for people to enjoy regularly on modern roads.”
“After almost three years, we are nearing completion of the Short Wheelbase’s development,” Mallock added. While this is the first such car to wear RML’s name, our experience working on a variety of whole vehicle programmes – as a ‘white label’ partner to various OEMs – is extensive, and second to none.”
“So this car showcases much of the experience we’ve gained from not only designing and building low-volume, high-end motor cars, but also implementing thorough testing procedures to make sure that driving them is an emotional experience for all the right reasons,” he continued. RML is typically commissioned to take on design, build and development projects for motorsport and road car applications.
The RML Short Wheelbase is nearing the end of its development phase, and it is scheduled to go on sale in the fourth quarter of this year. Just 30 units will be made, but no pricing have been announced just yet.
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