Back in July, the future of Artega was cast into doubt after the automaker filed for insolvency . Well, the good news is someone has bought the company. The bad news is they didn’t buy it to build cars.
Recently, Paragon AG took over all of the assets of the insolvent Artega Automobil GmbH & Co. KG with one caveat: they have no plans to resume production of Artega’s sports car, the Artega GT .
Instead, Paragon AG plans to use its newly acquired resources in staff and space to continue to develop its new Electromobility and Body-Kinematics divisions. The acquisition of Artega also lets Paragon AG to take full control of the company’s stage, enabling the latter to double its development team to 40 employees.
In a press release announcing the purchase, Paragon AG laid out its plans for Atria, including the use of the latter’s former headquarters in Delbrück, Germany to set up their own technology center, as well as expanding prototype construction, setting up a bespoke application service for customers, and manufacture products on a larger scale.
"We are therefore strengthening operations at our headquarters in the long term and ensuring job security for the future," said Klaus Dieter Frers, Chairman of the Managing Board.
Artega is quite well-known for its plucky little GT sports car which has been in production since 2007. However, the company has fallen into dire straits recently filing for insolvency with the local courts in Paderborn, Germany.
In an official statement regarding the issue, Artega stated “This step was necessary from a business perspective, for months after the proposed sale to an Asian investor had failed at the last minute. Together with the insolvency administration is now talking with other investors will be taken to find a solution for Artega, and its 34 employees. The operations will continue in full.”
The crippled brand has been looking for investors for months, and the above Asian investor pulled out for unknown reasons, thus leaving the company with nowhere to go.
For those of you not familiar with the term “insolvency” it basically means Artega is unable to pay off its debt, and may signal the end of the company as we also expect bankruptcy to be filed in the coming months, unless a lifesaving investor comes out to purchase the company.
This is extremely sad news for the company, and the shaky economic conditions in Europe are likely to be partly responsible for Artega being unable to pay off its debt. Furthermore, Artega was developing atarga version of the Artega GT and these latest developments may mean the end of the GT all together.
A year after Artega dropped the new GT and GT SE on our laps in Geneva , the German automaker returned to the scene of the crime with a targa version of their hard-top sports car.
The highlight of the Targa version is, of course, the top. The GT Targa comes with a removable panoramic glass roof that is said to be easily stowed behind the seats. Artega is watching customer feedback very closely on this feature and if all goes well, a production model will follow this concept.
As far as power goes, the Artega GT Targa will carry a 4.6-liter V6 engine mated to a six-speed DSG transmission to produce 300 horsepower. This allows the sports car to go from 0-62 mph in just 4.8 seconds with a top speed of 167 mph.
While Artega has been mum on how much it’s going to take to buy the GT Roadster, we do expect it to be in the neighborhood of the €75,000 price tag of the Artega GT. Convert that to greenbacks and you’re looking at a price of just under $100,000.
UPDATE 03/09/2012: This review has been updated with official specs and photos.
German automaker, Artega , first unveiled the Artega SE at the 2011 Geneva Motor Show last March, showing the promise of what a German electric sports car could look like. Of course, their purpose was to also give the US-based Tesla and their pride and joy, the Roadster 2.5 , something to think about.
Recently, the Artega SE was in attendance at the Frankfurt Motor Show with plenty of updates on the vehicle. The model that we saw at Frankfurt looks to be one of the few test prototypes of the electric sports car. While expectations are understandably high for the SE, Artega is tempering its expectations on the car, leaving it with a concept tag while it still undergoes testing and development.
Ultimately, the company has made no bones about its intention of bringing the Artega SE into something more than just a concept car. Artega chief executive, Peter Müller, put it in simple terms: "Our aim is to combine environmental responsibility with the passion for automobiles."
The Artega SE is an electric version of the company’s initial offering, the Artega GT . The two cars sport the same body and aluminum spaceframe with the only notable difference being the powertrain fitted under its hood.
UPDATE 09/20/2011: Engadget has received confirmation that the Artega GT’s younger brother - the Artega SE - will indeed be heading to US shores. There’s no specific timeline as to when this will happen, but at least we know it will!
The Artega SE may be the one getting all the attention, but Artega is determined to keep their offering, the GT version, as fresh as possible.
During the 2011 Geneva Motor Show held last week, the German automaker unveiled their latest project, an all-electric, Tesla-beating sports car that produces as much as 275 horsepower, courtesy of two, independently-operated electric motors mounted on the car’s rear axle. But while the SE figures to be a topic of conversation for the next few weeks, we definitely shouldn’t sleep on the car for which the Artega SE was based on, the Artega GT.
As far as aesthetics and performance figures go, the Artega GT makes no qualms about what it has. Designed by Henrik Fisker, the same man behind the BMW Z8 , the Aston Martin Vantage , and the Fisker Karma , the GT was built by Artega with only one vision in mind: create a high-powered sports car and doing it on one of the lightest aerodynamic bodies in its market segment.
Using a combination of an aluminum space frame, high-strength steel and alloys reinforced with carbon fiber, the Artega GT is about as sleek and svelte as they come. The fact that it produces around 300 horsepower is the proverbial cherry on top of the sundae.
There’s something to be said about a car you rarely hear from yet when the time comes that they pop up in the grid, you do nothing except pay attention.
As far as we’re concerned, thats how we feel about the Artega GT. And if it’s not enough that we have the car to talk about, this particular GT has actually also been tuned up by renowned tuner Cargraphic.
The 300 horsepower sports car gets a set of GT and GT-R three-piece aluminum wheels in a choice of either 19-inch or 20-inch dimensions. The wheels are also made from lightweight material, helping this Cargraphic-tuned Artega GT shed some weight from its standard version.
Over the past few days we have seen some new information about production beginning for the Artega GT . Now its time to see the hand-built budget sports car in action taking some laps at the Nardo ring in Italy.
In an interview with CarMagazine, The budget-minded, small batch sports car maker Artega announced its future plans. After the GT ends its run, Artega will build a smaller model that will have a lower price and the ability to be exported to the U.S. by 2010.
The new model will feature a lighter and more economical four-cylinder engine. Also, by 2010 Artega will launch a soft-top version of the current Artega GT. The Artega factory will officially open in September 2008 when the first dealer demonstrators are to roll off the line. By the end of the year, the batch of limited-edition ‘Intro 2008’ models will be completed, plus perhaps 50 built-to-order customer cars.
The Artega GT will be a serious competitor for the Porsche Cayman when it will go on sale early next year. Karl-Heinz Kalbfell said the Artega GT will be limited to only 1000 units a year and admitted an open-top version is also planned.
The Artega, designed by ex-Aston Martin design chief Henrik Fisker, was revealed at the 2007 Geneva Show as a coupé, but it will eventually be available as a convertible too. The chassis is an aluminium spaceframe with a supplementary frame made of high-strength steel to support the carbonfibre body.
The transverse, mid-mounted engine is a 3.6-litre V6 unit from the VW family, with 300bhp driving through a six-speed, twin-clutch, paddle-shift gearbox.
The car has several eye-catching properties that will prevent it being seen as “just another sports car”, Kalbfell claims. The first is a target weight of 1100kg, undercutting rivals by at least 250kg to the benefit of agility and performance (170mph, 0-62mph below 5.0sec).
Artega unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show the Intro 2008 Special Edition. This limited edition Artega GT will be limited to only 99 units and will go on sale at a price of €79,790.
The Artega GT Intro 2008 will feature unique paintwork, diamond-turned Artega forged alloy wheels, individually numbered plaques on the side panels and gearshift console, as well as custom velour and leather trim.
The Artega GT is powered by a 3.6-litre V6 that delivers 296 hp at 6600 rpm and a peak torque of 258 lbs-ft at 2400 rpm. It makes the 0 to 60 mph sprint in less than 5 seconds and can hit a top speed of 167 mph.