There's an Australian supercar on the way with a massive W16 engine
The W16 actually consists of two LS7 V8s glued together. Lovely
It's time to change the time zone in your watch and pretend it's Spring because there's a very interesting supercar coming from Down Under. It packs 1,400 hp and, for some reason, bears an Italian name: meet the Giocattolo Marcella.
Things don't look too bright for Australia in automotive terms and General Motors' decision to withdraw the Holden brand from Australia and New Zealand made the situation even worse. If you're a petrolhead in Australia you're left with Brabham Automotive and a few kit car and small-scale supercar manufacturers and... that's about it.
The Marcella is the brainchild of 72-year-old Australian Paul Halstead - former owner of De Tomaso Australia and Giocattolo Motori - and it's powered by a W16 engine, which is actually a bit of a Franken-engine made by welding together a pair of GM LS7 V8s from a Corvette.
The engine(s) was modified with the addition of a variety of components including new Higgins race heads and new crankshafts and it's coupled with a six-speed sequential with a limited-slip differential. In an interview with Car Advice Australia, Halstead said he wanted the "power of a Bugatti Veyron but I couldn't afford a bespoke W16 engine. I started with an LS7 Chevrolet V8. Supercharging was a possibility but the centre of gravity would have been way too high". Hence the V8+V8=W16 layout.
Halstead calls this the world's first "hyperod", hypercar + hot rod, because it comes with hypercar performance figures paired with analogue instruments and visual nods to American hot rods.
According to Halstead the lightweight, three-seater, roofless and doorless Giocattolo Marcella is going to be unveiled at the 2022 Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance.
To be honest, I don't understand the reasoning behind the name. Sometimes manufacturers love to use Italian names and I get it but that's because they normally use cool words like 'performante' or 'veloce'. In this instance, the words are giocattolo, which is Italian for toy, and Marcella, which is just a random Italian given name. Weird.
These drawings certainly look intriguing but I'd love, I'm sure we all would, to see some actual photographs of an actual prototype and if the prototype looks anything like these renderings, well, we're in for a treat.