2011 Geneva Motor Show: Gumpert Tornante by Touring redefines the supercar term

Article by Christian Andrei, on March 2, 2011

The Gumpert Tornante by Touring is the product of the collaboration between supercar maker Gumpert and Italian coach builders Carrozzeria Touring Superleggera. The vehicle is powered by a 700-PS biturbo V8 engine that enables it to reach a top speed that exceeds 300 km/h (186 mph). Its V8 was tuned even further for a Fast Touring model.

Its engine weighs just 196 kg (432 lbs) and is paired with a six-speed TT40e semi-automatic gear box that may be controlled with paddle shifters. This two-seater is fitted with aluminum or forged 19-inch wheels up front, and 20-inch wheels in back, all center locking, and covered in Michelin Pilot Super Sport tires.

In Gumpert’s press release, the company claimed that "an alternative powered Tornante" will be presented next year. The car was designed by Touring Superleggera and constructed by Gumpert. It was created out of a need for more interior space. It features 200 liters (7 cubic feet) of cargo space, which is restricted by the space needed for the crash box. Even so, its space is still 16% less than what’s offered by the Ferrari 458 Italia.

The company also said that the new model offers adequate performance and superb dynamic properties and aerodynamics, as well as sufficient levels of comfort, interior space and ergonomics. The press release said that the model has the “spirit of a true dream car” but it has enough practical features to become a safe and usable sports car in today's traffic.

The one obvious weakness to the car is its weight. It is higher by 100mm and longer by 15mm and is estimated to weigh 100-200kg more than the Gumpert Apollo. This means that the new car weighs 1,300-1,400kg, depending on what equipment is installed.

Exterior Design

Since the Gumpert Tornante is not derived from any existing model from Touring Superleggera, it was created from scratch; thereby giving the designer a full focus on the rolling chassis package and its hard points. This supercar from Touring and Gumpert, of course, delivers excellent performance as backed by its superior dynamic attributes. It also provides ample comfort, interior room and ergonomics.

Yes, the Gumpert Tornante is truly a high-performance supercar, but it is also loaded with a number of practical features that make it safe and useable even in traffic. Gumpert Tornante features a number of Touring attributes stemming from its specific proportions as well as from the great blend of dynamic power and burly elegance – giving the supercar a refined fluidity when on the move. Even when the Gumpert Tornante is not in motion, its body work is still expressive of its movement.

Its front end is marked by a prominent grille within the supercar’s balanced front wings. The front end is also marked by pronounced air intakes, detailing how much attention was paid to the air intake surface and the overall airflow. Gumpert Tornante is afforded with a well-defined waistline that manifests the functional split between the supercar’s greenhouse and its lower body.

The upper body reflects the attention paid to allow both the driver and passengers to enjoy a comfortable ride as well as a superb visibility. Moreover, Gumpert Tornante features muscular shoulders that convey the dynamic potential behind it.

Access to the cabin and the cargo room as well as to the mechanics has been made easier by the gull-wing deployment of the doors and the boot lid of the Gumpert Tornante. Starting from its rear, Gumpert Tornante is marked by low quarter panels outlining the curve of the roof while visible air diffuser allows for optimal downforce.

Press Release

Gumpert Tornante by Touring

Touring Superleggera and Gumpert have chosen the 2011 Geneva Motor Show stage for the world premiere of the Gumpert Tornante. Touring Superleggera provided the design and body engineering while Gumpert will take care of manufacturing and sales of the next model, complementing the Gumpert range as of 2012. The Tornante is showcased at the stage of 1:1 static style model in the best Italian tradition.

Fast Tourer

Gumpert have gained a reputation for their impressive street legal racing cars. They addressed Touring Superleggera with a call for elegance, more passengers and luggage space, improved comfort, access and ventilation, and noise reduction. However, the fundamentals of performance and dynamic properties had to be respected without compromise.

At Touring, designers and body engineers started then a process of creative elimination to define the true essentials of all the parameters involved, limiting unnecessary weight and volume. The result is still a thoroughbred, just a few grades more civilized, with some extra skills for an enjoyable voyage. It is called a Fast Tourer. However, let there be no misunderstanding about its intentions.

Project development

When selecting the partner for the new model's body design, Gumpert recognised that elegance is part of the genetic code of Touring Superleggera's creations. Even more remarkably, the paradigm of elegance was applied by Touring to the race cars too. This distinctive approach was at the basis of many masterpieces, like the 1940 Mille Miglia winner BMW 328 Berlinetta, the Ferrari 166 and 340 and the inspiring Alfa Romeo 8C2900. They all were redoubtable race machines with singular grace.

In turn, Touring was intrigued by the challenge from the young, vital and ambitious sports car manufacturer, known for uncompromised orientation to efficiency, high quality engineering and the constant quest for better performance. In the development work, the teams from the two companies discovered soon that they share the same respect for efficiency and essentiality. This facilitated the subsequent stages of engineering and feasibility study, and the merger of body and chassis required only minor adjustments from both sides.

Architecture

The space frame chassis is a derivative of the apollo and features the same central engine layout. However, the requirements of accessibility and inner space have dictated a number of important changes to the rolling chassis:

the lateral member of the chassis is lowered by 80 mm in the door area
the A pillar and the windshield are rotated vertically by 2.5°
the B pillar is moved backwards with 100 mm allowing for 1120 mm wide gull-wing doors
the H point is displaced by 210 mm in height and 46 mm in length
the overall height is now 1215 mm
Thanks to the thorough frame engineering, the outstanding combination of lightness and torsional stiffness of the original chassis is preserved. The engineers target 100 kg and slightly lower than 40.000 Nm/degree, but the passenger compartment volume is now increased by 25% and the luggage compartment capacity is brought to 200 l.

Other modifications aim at enhanced ride comfort and driveability:

the floor height is increased by 20 mm
the shell seats are fully adjustable, heated, with 4-point belts
the paddle shifters are standard feature
sound and heat insulation material is fitted on the floor and between the cabin and the engine compartment
glasses are double layer for better heat and noise insulation
the ventilation system capacity is improved
A crash box in the front section, adapted from Formula-1 technology, absorbs the impact energy in case of a crash, improving the passive safety. Featuring composite body panels over the light chrome-molybdenum steel space frame with carbon fibre monocoque, the construction principle mirrors the original method patented by Touring in 1936, and authorizes the symmetrical Superleggera badges on the bonnet.

Design

Unlike other Touring creations, the Gumpert Tornante is not rooted into a specific model of the Italian designer's heritage. Aesthetically, the project started from a white sheet of paper, allowing the designer's full and free focus on the challenging package of the rolling chassis and its hard points. The new model should not only offer ample performance and superb dynamic properties and aerodynamics, but also adequate levels of comfort, interior space and ergonomics. The spirit of a true dream car, but with sufficient practical features to become a safe and useable sports car in today's traffic.

The Touring accent of the Gumpert Tornante originates from specific proportions and the balance of muscular elegance and introvert power, rather than formal language. The bodywork preserves its movement even when the car stands still, and when on the move, it expresses unique, elegant fluidness.

The prominent grille within the balanced front wings characterizes the Tornante's front area. The air intakes are pronounced, reflecting the care given to the air intake surface and the overall airflow.

The well-defined waistline reflects the functional separation between the greenhouse and the lower body. The top is a light area offering extended space for driver and passenger, overall visibility and sportive but comfortable 'life on board'. The muscular, though elegant shoulders announce the stunning performance of the power unit. Both the Gumpert Tornante's doors and the boot lid open with gull-wing movement, providing easy access to the interior, the mechanics and the luggage compartment.

From the rear, the low quarter panels outline the powerful curve of the roof. Below the waistline, the very visible air diffuser evokes the research of the maximal downforce.

The overall design breaths superior potential and performance in an elegant and slightly understated way, faithful to the Touring tradition.

Power Unit

The Gumpert Tornante has the genes of the Gumpert apollo and inherits its impressive V8 biturbo engine. Weighing only 196 kg, the engine plays a major role in ensuring the ideal weight and the fascinating driving dynamics of the Tornante. An angle of 90° between the two cylinder banks is a sign of a classic 8-cylinder engine.

Starting from the pure block from Audi, the engine is a complete in-house development. Thus, the manufacturing process contains among others all the moving parts, air and fuel management, turbo chargers, charge air-duct and dry sump lubrication. In the basic version this engine delivers 700 HP. In comparison to the apollo, the configuration will be optimized for the Fast Touring mission. This means more comfort and more suitability for daily use.

Alongside the V8 power unit, an alternative powered Gumpert Tornante is also planned for 2012.

Driveline

The fully synchronised, automatic six-speed transmission guarantees efficient utilization of the remarkable energy at the back wheels. The arrangement of the gears in a longitudinal direction in the path of travel ensures a very low centre of gravity and optimum weight distribution.

Extremely short gearshifts up to 40 milliseconds (torque-to-torque) are provided by the precise TT40e transmission of the apollo, where "e" stands for electronic gear system. Gear changes are faster thanks to rocker switches on the steering wheel. The Formula 1-type technology promises the ultimate in comfort along with best driving performance.

Suspension

The apollo derived built-in suspension ideally complements the body's sophisticated aerodynamics. The Tornante owes the finely tuned sensitivity of the suspension system and the optimised exertion of power to its double transverse control arm pushrod configuration at front and rear.

The double wishbones ensure that the tires maintain optimum contact to the road surface, independently of the bound rate of suspension system. As the suspension elements are linked to the main frame, the system ensures a responsive reaction and precise handling.

Chassis

Made of top-quality and highly stable chrome-molybdenum-steel with an integrated safety cell, the round tube frame is the base and symbolic backbone of the Gumpert Tornante. Providing additional space and comfort for its passengers compared to the apollo, the Tornante will be as safe as its racetrack-dedicated brother is. The Gumpert Tornante succeeds in combining low weight and rigidity with finest driving dynamics and comfortable Fast Touring.

TECHNICAL DATA

2-seater sports car with a mid-engine arrangement, chrome-molybdenum steel chassis with an integrated safety cell, doors and the boot lid open with gull-wings, carbon body, 100 l stainless steel tank behind the passenger cell with integrated catch tank, long and pushrod-operated double transverse control arm suspension with fully adjustable dampers (front and rear) and anti roll bar in front, ground clearance adjustable between 60 and 140 mm, two circuit ABS brake system with six piston callipers, inside ventilated discs (378 x 32 mm) at front and rear

Dimensions

Length: 4,475 mm
Width: 1,971 mm
Height: 1,215 mm
Wheel base: 2,700 mm
Track

front: 1,648 mm
back: 1,600 mm
Boot volume: ca. 200 l

Weight

Kerb weight (depending on equipment components): 1,300-1,400 kg
Engine

V8 cylinder biturbo engine with 90° cylinder angle, closed-deck light metal crankcase, light metal cylinder heads with five valves per cylinder, four overhead camshafts, variable time of ignition (Vario Cam direct) on the intake, hydraulic valve clearance compensation, dry sump lubrication, double-flow exhaust system with 3-way catalytic converter, four Lambda probes for gas mixture and diagnostics, on-board diagnostic system, two Intercoolers, electronic ignition with a rested ignition distribution (eight ignition coils), sequential multipoint fuel injection, electronic accelerator system (drive-by-wire)

Cylinder: 8
Type: 90°-V
Valves per cylinder: 5
Cubic capacity: 4,163 cc
Stroke: 93 mm
Bore: 84,5 mm
Nominal output: 515 kW / 700 HP @ 6,500 rpm
Max. torque: 900 Nm / 663.7 lb ft @ 4,000 rpm
Maximum: 7,400 rpm
Litre performance: 123.7 kw per liter / 168.1 HP per liter
Compression: 9.3
Recommended fuel type: 98 ROZ / 88 MOZ
Emission standard: Euro 5
Gearbox

automatic six-speed gear box TT40e with synchronization and oil cooling, operated with paddle shift controls, twin plate clutch configuration (diameter 240 mm), Torsen differential lock

Wheels

Tires: Michelin Pilot Super Sport
front: 265/35 ZR19
back: 345/30 ZR20
Wheel dimension
front: 10 J
back: 13 J
Wheel rim type: aluminium cast or forged wheels with centre lock

PERFORMANCE FIGURES

Top speed: >300 km/h (estimated)

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