GTA Spano - First Steer
“Full Throttle track tests the new GTA Spano in a world first drive on Spain’s Ricardo Tormo race circuit in Valencia.”
With 573kW and 920Nm, the GTA Spano is the real deal. Blisteringly quick with race-car-like handling, this may also be the best looking supercar on the planet right now; at least that’s what we think.
The car we drove is a prototype and is propelled by a monster 8.3-litre V10 engine, similar to that found in the US muscle car, the Dodge Viper.
But that’s where the comparisons stop. The GTA Spano is a mid-engine car built in Spain by GTA Motor in Valencia and bristles with high tech innovations, such as liquid crystal shading (you can vary the degree of light on the cabin) and a Windows XP operating system, which needs to boot up just like your own PC.
Domingo Ochoa, the owner of the company is one seriously passionate Spaniard, I had tears in my eyes after he described the effort that he and his team have put into this project.
We love the GTA logo too, it’s a coat of arms with a wolf on top (Ochoa meant wolf in medieval times) and a chequered flag on the lower half which fits nicely with the company’s racing heritage.
He has been constructing Formula 3 racecars for over fifteen years, so you’ll take my word for it when I tell you that this car is quick.
Try 0-100km/h in less than three seconds and a top speed of more than 350km/h and the Spano is literally super glued to the tarmac. The prototype we drove wasn’t quite tuned to full power, but I have no doubt that the production version, due for release later this year, will measure up.
I’m not sure how much has gone into this project but with only one GTA Spano in existence, you can bet this car is worth many millions of euros. No surprise then, that the car was trucked to the Ricardo Tormo race track, along with the entire development team and diagnostics equipment for testing by the Full Throttle team.
The circuit was booked from 5pm-7pm, but we had to wait for a superbike session to wrap up before the car was wheeled out of the truck and readied for our serious track session. These guys was so quick that I’m surprised Spain doesn’t have more MotoGP riders in Pedrosa’s league.
Incidentally, this is the home of the Spanish MotoGP and apart from the high-speed main straight; this is an incredibly tight circuit.
After a quick run through by the technical guys in front of a decent and very enthusiastic crowd, I flicked the ignition switch and fired up the V10.
I pulled back the rather difficult racing style seven-speed sequential shifter and without stalling, hammered down pit lane towards the end of the straight and onto the track.
After several reasonably quick laps, you are praying for a set of quick shifting paddles which would allow you to enter and exit the corners much faster than what is possible with the manual shifter.
GTA Motor told us that the production cars will get exactly that, and with seven speeds which should be a treat.
This car has got loads of grip, the 20-inch rear wheels shod with massive Pirelli 330/35’s certainly help, but give them enough throttle through a corner and the car will try and step out, but not before you pull up to 1.3G, and that was without knowing the track.
It’s stable too, at just over 250km/h down the straight, the Spano feels solid and capable of much more before you downshift and set up for the left-hander and onto a series of snake like bends. This is where I would have liked some additional side bolster, at least in the driver’s seat.
The brakes are simply awesome, they’re courtesy of AP Racing and carbon ceramic, as you would expect.
I liked the steering though, plenty of feel from dead centre, although; my preference would be for a little more accuracy at high speed but nothing too dramatic.
The beauty of a monocoque constructed from exotic materials like carbon-fibre, Kevlar and Titanium, is huge torsional rigidity with minimal weight (the rest of the car is all carbon fibre panels). Try 1350 kg and when married to the sort of engine outputs listed above, the Spano was only ever going to be one of the fastest cars in the world, both on and off the track.
We can’t wait to drive the one of the production series of just 99 cars, which should start rolling out of the boutique factory later this year.