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Wednesday, September 10, 2008

The Gumpert Apollo

Gumpert isn’t a name many of us are familiar with. That may soon change. The latest supercar to hit American streets is the Gumpert Apollo, a genuine contender for one of the fastest cars in the world.

The sprint from standstill to 60 mph need only take about three seconds and top speed is in the region of 225 mph. That’s with the standard-issue 650-hp motor. Plans are afoot for an 850-hp version. The car is handmade from carbon fiber over a lightweight metal frame; has cool, scissor-type doors; and a mid-mounted, twin-turbo, 4.2-liter V-8 engine sourced from Audi.

This Ingolstadt, Germany, connection runs a little deeper; Roland Gumpert used to work for Audi, running a highly successful motorsport campaign in the ’80s. The supercar that bears his name has, to date, only been available in Europe. But now there’s a way to get one over here.

Arizona company Evolution Motorsports (EM) plans to import about 10 Apollos a year. They come over as separate bodies and drive trains to be assembled and checked over by EM’s technicians. Then they go to European Touch in Huntington Beach, where customers buy and pick up their new, incredibly fast rides. All service, repair and warranty work is still carried out by EM in Arizona (it’s the only authorized Gumpert repair dealer in the U.S.).

autos cars Los Angeles Times Gumpert Apollo fastest car in the world Audi V8 225 mph carbon fiber US-spec The Apollo starts at $400,000, but there’s plenty of room for customization. and various options can send the final reckoning up to $750,000 or so. The accompanying video shows the first Apollo to arrive stateside. Go, Gumpert.

—Colin Ryan

Photo: Gumpert