Jaded with modern supercars and sports cars that dilute driver involvement, designer Gordon Murray is making a comeback with a lightweight three-cylinder model rated at 220 horsepower
The creator of the McLaren F1 and the man behind more than 20 Formula 1 car designs and numerous world titles, Gordon Murray, is nearly ready to make his big comeback in the world of drivers’ cars with the 43rd creation of his career.
That explains the name of his new car – the GMA (Gordon Murray Automotive) T.43 will roll out weighing just 850kg and producing 220 horsepower from a 1.5-litre three-cylinder turbocharged engine. Since this is Murray we’re talking about there can only be a six-speed manual transmission on board, and a whole bunch of serious lightweighting exercises all around.
Made of aluminium and carbon fibre, the chassis too is Murray’s own design and the main contributor to the T.43’s low kerb weight figure – the next best thing is the new Alpine A110 which weighs 1.1 tonnes. The Porsche Cayman in comparison is enormous, measuring in some 700mm longer and weighing half a tonne more than the IGM.
In fact the T.43 is significantly more compact than even the Alpine, the French coupe being nearly half a metre longer. Actually we have to keep going just to give you an idea of how tiny Murray’s mid-engined creation is – smaller than a Mazda MX-5, smaller than the old Toyota MR-S, and unbelievably, smaller even than the 1970’s Fiat X1/9.
There is no word on where the 1.5-litre force-fed three-pot comes from, but we can only think of three manufacturers able to provide such a thing – BMW uses one of those in Minis and the 2 Series; Ford’s new Fiesta ST has a hot inline-three under the bonnet with 200bhp out the box; Nissan raced a 1.5-litre hybrid at Le Mans with the Zeod prototype four years ago, so we’d kind of like to think Murray called on the Japanese for some assistance even if the former two are safer bets.
After the T.43 word is that Murray will move straight to T.44 which is supposed to be a bigger and faster supercar competing against Ferraris, Lambos, and rivaling cars from his old employer, McLaren.