Prior to the Geneva Motor Show, British low volume sports car manufacturer Ginetta revealed nearly everything worth knowing about their newest creation, including very detailed photographs showing its rather extreme aero-informed aesthetic and some projected performance information. We did not know it’s name, though.
Last week, during said Motor Show, the company revealed that to be the Akula - Russian for shark - and that the V8 powered supercar would be capable of besting cars of serious calibre such as the McLaren 720S and Ferrari 488 Pista, leveraging its LMP1-derived aerodynamics and lightweight construction.
Ginetta claims that, in terms of pure downforce generation, the Akula will be second to none, and thus we’re rather curious to see just how the car navigates such high-speed corner-intensive tracks as the Nurburgring Nordschleife and how closely it fares against the current road-legal record holder, the Lamborghini Aventador SVJ.
The car’s body is an exercise in the extremes of angularity, but obviously contributes to an insane (but still secret) downforce figure. Its suspension is equally motorsports inspired, as are the carbon ceramic brakes that, thanks to its 1,150kg kerb weight, pulls up 1.2G in deceleration.
Just 20 examples are to be built in total, making this one of the most exclusive cars to come out of Britain in addition to being one of the most formidable on a track and still remain street legal. A little annoyingly, despite disclosing some details about the precision in-house crafted 6.0-litre V8 engine generating around 447kW, we still have so little to compare it against.
Top speed is said to be over 320km/h (200mph), but just how effectively 100km/h sails past from rest is not yet publicly known. Still, considering that only the rear wheels are being tasked with thrust to velocity in such a lightweight machine, perhaps acceleration it isn’t as impressive by comparison.
There’s a mechanical limited slip differential, of course, but those advantages are mostly realised around corners than on a straight line. Scant are details on the Akula’s bespoke 6-speed transmission as well. Other than knowing it will be a transaxle unit, we can only guess its operational nature, though with the car being so motorsport-inspired, a single-clutch sequential unit seems the likelier option.
Another mystery is how the engine will be packaged in the front bay given that the narrow nose leaves very little cavity for the 6.0-litre mill to reside. Ginetta’s own virtual cutaway reveals the V8 being positioned quite far behind the front axle, possibly even intruding into the passenger cell, explaining why the seats are positioned almost in alignment with the rear wheels.
Those seats themselves are integrated into the chassis and are therefore non-adjustable with the pedal box and steering wheel instead being telescopic to suit, itself being modelled after the multi-function wheels fitted to LMP1 racers - airbags must be much less of a concern. Still, at least Ginetta still provides the Akula with a touchscreen infotainment system.