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Thursday, October 4, 2012

New Lyonheart Sports Car Reinterprets Jaguar E-Type for Today


I originally wrote this column back in February for a now defunct car website. I’m rerunning it here as background for my next post.
Lyonheart K courtesy Classic Factory

Swiss design company Classic Factory has just launched a new British luxury sports car, to be built by hand entirely in Coventry. Does the world need yet another British luxury car? Probably not, but I just had a look at the Lyonheart Cars Ltd. website and the Lyonheart K is drop-dead gorgeous. While I will never in a million years be able to afford one (the asking price is €495,000 or approximately $656,122, and that’s before taxes), I sure wish I could.

This limited series car has a 5.0 litre supercharged V-8, putting out 550PS. With an aluminum chassis and engine, and carbon fibre panels, the Lyonheart K weighs around 3500 pounds. Consequently it’s fast. They say it will do 100 kph in less than four seconds (that’s 0 to 60 mph), with an electronically-governed top speed of 300 kph or somewhere around 186 mph. Yikes. All of this is hidden under a classic clamshell hood.

Classic Factory had originally designed the car as a one-off modern take on Jaguar’s E-type, but it was so popular they decided to actually build it. According to their CEO, Robert Palm, "We want to make the 'Made In England' label into a truthful concept, not just a statement. Every part of the Lyonheart K is developed, engineered and hand-built in England. The design clues of the Lyonheart K reflect Britishness at its best: cool, elegant, refined, understated yet powerful and dynamic."

It’s all of that. If it performs even half as well as it looks, it’ll be sensational.



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