Donkervoort GTO makes its debut with a new 2.5-liter TFSI Audi engine

Article by Christian Andrei, on December 19, 2011

Audi Quattro GmbH, working in partnership with Donkervoort Automobielen based in Lelystad, has officially unveiled the Donkervoort GTO, the next generation of what can be called as open sports cars. This is big news for many fans considering that development took two and a half years. For Donkervoort, this is considered as a big milestone in its 34 years of operation as the Donkervoort GTO was created using methods originating from the aerospace and aviation industries. According to founder Joop Donkervoort, this model will be the first generation of cars to come from the company and this is why the chassis number was started back at “0”. In terms of size, the Donkervoort GTO is larger compared to the open D8 270RS and even the closed GT.

Specifically, the new model is longer by 35 mm and wider by 15 cm. These changes are important as it was needed to be able to longitudinally position the large Audi TFSI 2.5-liter five-cylinder motor capable of output at 340 hp. The new dimensions also allowed it to have the right balance. For its parts, only 30% of it is similar to the GT with 5% being shared with the D8 270RS. What this means is that the Donkervoort GTO is indeed a new car. Proof of this is how the most current auto techniques have been employed and combined with excellent form in order to offer the best driving experience.

While the power output is between 340 hp and 400 hp, peak torque is at 450 Nm starting at 1,600 rpm. Even with all of these, total weight is estimated at 700 kg. It is clear with these figures that the Donkervoort GTO is slated to be Europe’s fast sports car. This is why when the company conducted a private preview for its Ambassadors across Europe, it was so well received that of the first 25 specially designed units that were shown, about half of them were sold within a few hours. As mentioned earlier, the 25 units are all fitted with the TFSI 2.5-liter motor which is lighter by as much as 30 kg when compared to the engine in the standard Audi.

According to Joop Donkervoort, the lower weight was a result of some of the motor’s accessory parts being redesigned, working with technicians from Audi. A good example of this is the new intake manifold. Donkervoort revealed that since the intake goes through a more advantageous route in the motor region, it was not simply lighter but had a positive effect on the motor.

On its dashboard, he added, there is a special race module switch that when activated can have the 340 hp capacity immediately increased to 400 hp. Connected to this is an innovation from Donkervoort. Specifically, it will be the first ever car from the company to be fitted with the traction control, a good feature especially when driving in the rain. It does not stop there as by using glue to connect the carbon composite large panels with the tubular frame made of steel, this resulted in an increase in the rigidity combined with an ultra-light weight. In fact, the carriage work itself is entirely made up of carbon composite, same as the one-piece door and the hinges integrated to it.

The door can endure a force of around 1,500 kg with the hinges themselves being able to absorb a force of at least 1,100 kg. All of these were achieved with an overall weight of 980 g. This is not a new thing in the aviation industry but it is indeed a first for a car.

Then there is the locking devices placed on its bonnet, which is made up of aluminum. Using techniques by the rocket industry, Donkervoort was able to focus on qualities that include smooth finish, easy operation, and low weight. Its undercarriage has been redesigned as well to deliver extra stability. Thus while the rear axle comes with an entirely new design, the front axle has been fitted with an anti-roll bar.

Donkervoort has long been known for its experience and with the new GTO, it has come with a new meaning and initial tests conducted on the first unit is proof of this. Indeed, the new GTO shows it is truly manageable. Production of the Donkervoort GTO is slated to begin by 2012 with the first units set to be delivered by the summer. The first regular variants though are projected to be driven on roads in Europe by 2013. Excluding taxes, the Donkervoort GTO is priced from €100,000 and can go as high as €150,000.

Press Release

Donkervoort GTO: 'experience' has a new meaning

The devotees have been waiting anxiously. Now it's here! After two and a half years of development Donkervoort Automobielen in Lelystad - in close collaboration with Audi Quattro GmbH - has presented the next generation of open sports cars: the Donkervoort GTO.

A combination of beautiful shape, the latest auto techniques and the ultimate experience. With a capacity of 340 to 400 HP and a torque of 450 Nm from about 1600 RPMs. And all this with a total weight of around 700 kilos. Without a doubt one of the fastest sports cars on the European market. And, with the first private preview for Donkervoort Ambassadors from all over Europe, received so enthusiastically that within a few hours approximately half of the first 25 specially designed GTOs were sold.

The GTO is clearly a size larger than its predecessors, the closed GT and the open D8 270RS. About 35 centimetres longer and 15 centimetres wider, to be exact. Necessary to accommodate the massive, longitudinally placed, five cylinder 340 hp 2.5 TFSI Audi motor and at the same time realise an astonishing balance in the design. The GTO is therefore a brand-new designed car. Only sharing 5% of the parts with the D8 270RS and about 30% with the much more recent GT. A milestone in the 34-year history of Donkervoort. With techniques directly derived from the aviation and aerospace industry. The first in a new generation of Donkervoort automobiles, according to Joop Donkervoort. The reason he also put the chassis number back to '0' starting with the GTO.

The first 25 specially designed GTOs are also equipped with a 2.5 TFSI motor, which is 30 kg lighter than the standard Audi variant. Joop Donkervoort about this: 'This weight savings is obtained by redesigning several accessory parts of the motor together with the Audi technicians. For example, amongst others a new intake manifold was developed. Because the intake follows a more favourable route through the motor area it is not only lighter, but has a favourable effect on the achievements of the motor as well. The dashboard in this design of the GTO is equipped with a special race module switch, which can increase the capacity from 340 to 400 HP at once. Connected to this is another Donkervoort novelty: the first car from Lelystad that has 'traction control' on board. Only for when it is raining of course.'

But this too does not end the renewal of the GTO. By joining the steel tubular frame with large carbon composite panels with glue, a unique combination of (significantly increased) rigidity and ultra-light weight was created. The carriage work also consists completely of carbon composite with as unique invention a one piece door (including integrated hinges), which can withstand a sideways blow of about 1500 kilos and of which the hinges can withstand a force of more than 1100 kilos .... with a total weight of only 980 gramms!! A technique derived from the aviation industry and never before applied in a car. Which is also true for the locking devices of the aluminium bonnet. Derived from the American rocket industry, where low weight, easy operation and smooth finishing - just like at Donkervoort - are of essential importance. In addition the undercarriage of the car has been thoroughly revised, the front axle has been equipped with a totally new anti-roll bar and the rear axle construction - to give the GTO extra stability - has a completely new design.

Donkervoort stands for experience, and that term has received a new meaning with the GTO. Tests with the first sample have incontrovertibly proven this. Even though it appears this car is amazingly well manageable. The production of the new car starts in 2012, whereby it is expected that the first specially designed GTOs will be delivered in the summer. The first 'regular' versions are expected on the European roads starting in 2013. The price of the new GTO is between € 100,000 and € 150,000 excluding taxes.

Topics: sports car, audi, engine

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