Mexico may be known for building most of our vehicles, including supposedly American products, but they haven’t built a true sports car of their own. The good people over at Mastretta are looking to change all of that.
The new MXT will be powered by a 2.0-liter Duratec inline-four with a turbocharger that will crank out 250 horsepower and 257 pound-feet of torque. That power should be plenty as the MXT is lightweight and very basic.
The exterior of the car is nothing to write home about, but we hear it looks much better in person. The car uses an aluminum semi-monocoque construction with a carbon fiber belly pan and a steel subframe. Covering all those goodies is a body of fiberglass-reinforced plastic.
The MXT is on its way to Europe with a price of £31,000 and £38,000. While that might seem cheap for a high-performance sports car, take a look at the specs and you’ll change your mind in a heartbeat. The MXT is without ABS, stability control, and airbags, making this machine a deathtrap to the inexperienced driver. Convert that price from pounds to dollars and you’re looking at a vehicle that costs as much as a Ford Mustang GT500 .
We can’t be certain that the MXT will be coming to America any time soon, as the company will look to build some sales momentum in Europe first. Not to mention passing emission tests in this country is harder than astrophysics. Still, it might be years behind the Mustang GT500 , but it sure will turn more heads than one.
UPDATE 09/12/2011: Daniel Mastretta, the man behind the MXT sports car, has finally announced that the car has been greenlighted for production with the first production make expected to be delivered to its buyer within the month. Good for you, Mastretta! We’re looking forward to seeing this baby out on American roads soon - if it makes it there, that is.
UPDATE 01/08/13: The now forgotten Mastretta MXT-R is scheduled to resurface at the Autosport International Racing Show in Birmingham , UK. According to Mastretta, the cars has since undergone a few modifications so it’ll be interesting to see what the latest iteration looks like.
Tecnoidea SAPI de CV is a Mexican design and engineering consulting firm based in the Mexico City area, with more than 20 years of experience in the transportation industry. Through creativity, innovation and technology, Tecnoidea has helped businesses create products from the initial concept all the way to successful product development. Tecnoidea effectively becomes an extension of its client´s product development team. Backed by a solid reputation in providing world-class design and engineering services, Tecnoidea enables visions to become commercial success.
The company has developed and built in its facilities bus prototypes for public transport and for private coach building firms. Thousands of these buses operate daily in numerous, busy Mexican cities.
Expanding from these roots, Tecnoidea built in the 90’s, kit-car replicas of famous cars, including America´s favourite sports car and the 1955 Speedster. These replicas were produced using fibreglass reinforced plastic (FRP) technology for the body and utilized a production chassis.
Following the completion of the kit-car project, the company developed technology allowing it to complete its first independently developed project: The Mastretta MXB. This car was the first in-house automotive project the firm undertook, basing the car on a widely available production platform at the time. Although the car had modest dynamic capabilities, it excelled on its built quality and innovative design. Thirty MXB units were built from 1996 to 1998, which were sold in México, Europe, Japan and the U.S.
THE PROJECT MXT, 2006 – PRESENT
The MXT vision began in 2006. The goal was to create a brand new sports car with a provocative and unique styling. For the first time in the company’s history, a proprietary chassis was developed along with all the technical engineering elements, with the exception of the powertrain. After years of working on the vehicle’s design, talking with potential suppliers, creating early prototypes and doing preliminary tests, the MXT Prototype Zero debuted in 2008 at the British Motorshow in London. Production was planned to start in 2009, however the international financial crisis delayed the project by one year.
2010 is a very important year for Mexico as we commemorate 200 years of our nation’s independence and 100 years of the revolutionary movement that forged our country’s identity. In this monumental year, we are proud to rejoice at the birth of the first ever Mexican-designed and built low-volume production Mexican sports car for sale on the international market.
The Mastretta MXT is the first high-performance sports car by Mastretta Cars. The new automotive manufacturer division of Tecnoidea is based in Ocoyoacac, Estado de México, closely located to the capital of the country.
The Mastretta MXT is a high-performance 2 seat sports car, engineered to deliver outstanding performance through mechanical excellence.
The MXT is Mastretta’s answer to the lightweight sports car market, offering a highly advanced vehicle with aggressive design and outstanding driving dynamics while simultaneously responding to our environmentally conscious times by achieving a high level of fuel efficiency.
This lightweight coupé (weighing just over 900 kg) is an entirely new 2-seater, rear mid-engine sports car developed using advanced aerospace materials and motorsport technology. The MXT was developed with the driver experience in mind. Its priorities from the onset have thus been to deliver outstanding performance through purity of design. Its powerful turbocharged 2.0 L engine develops 250 hp, allowing the MXT to accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in just 4.9 seconds. This acceleration is harnessed by a finely tuned chassis, allowing the vehicle to develop more than 1.1 G of cornering and braking force.
The Mastretta MXT has the robustness and practicality that allow for its use on a day-to-day basis. It is well suited for long distance journeys and city driving alike. With class-leading interior space, this coupé conveys a feeling of spaciousness. The vehicle is fitted with beautifully crafted carbon fiber seats, wrapped in premium leather while interior accents are trimmed in Ultrasuede®, creating the perfect balance between elegance and performance. This car is equipped with the latest technological amenities, including a multimedia system featuring GPS, Bluetooth and iPod compatibility. While performance-oriented, the ride enjoys a high level of comfort due to a lightweight vehicle construction. The MXT is a unique car that offers a high level of versatility, making it a perfect vehicle for daily spirited driving or as a powerful racetrack element.
Designing a car is more than simply creating a beautiful shape. Our design team followed the traditional racing principles of functionality and lightness. Even at first sight, the striking design of the Mastretta MXT reflects its high performance nature. While speeding through a track or sitting silently still, this car exudes an unmistakable essence of form following function.
Overall, the MXT has a very compact appearance. It sits low and broad and its proportions strike great balance from every angle. The main lines were influenced by features that define the modern high-performance vehicle: low height, two seats and a mid-engine configuration; thus creating the ideal layout for optimal handling response and stability. Proportions of the wheelbase, width, minimal overhangs, and height give the Mastretta MXT a stunning presence, while simultaneously suggesting lightness and speed.
The final shape of the car was dictated by the principles of aerodynamics. The flowing line that travels along the centre of the car, starting with the low nose through to the rear spoiler, channels the air in a clean fashion while generating the required downforce to give the MXT agility and balance at both low and high speeds. Large side scoops provide breathing and cooling for the turbocharged rear mid-engine. The flat aluminium underbody also plays an important role as it directs the air to the rear diffuser, not only avoiding lift but enhancing rear stability; essential features for the performance driver.
Components and details that form part of the exterior design enhance the beauty of the basic shape. The style of the headlights, painted in a colour contrasting that of the body, seamlessly follows the overall design. The side windows are frameless. The single exhaust system is elegantly housed in the centre of the diffuser. Laser-cut lettering adorns the Mastretta name on the rear bumper and the MXT denomination on its sides.
The Mastretta MXT was engineered and built around the cockpit. The seats are positioned close together and as low as the chassis allows, creating an ideal seating position for performance driving and allowing the driver to enjoy optimal road feel.
Despite the vehicle’s small dimensions, the interior is spacious enough to seat even tall drivers comfortably. Bespoke carbon fibre seats, trimmed in leather, were developed to provide maximum support for the driver under high g-forces generated by the Mastretta MXT when cornering, accelerating and braking. The flat-bottomed steering wheel has a diameter of only 320 mm, a size that facilitates quick turn-ins. The aluminium pedals are positioned to allow precision footwork, with the throttle located slightly in front of the brake pedal to facilitate the heel-and-toe technique.
All the interior materials are classified specifically for the auto industry, including fire retardant carpets and treated leather while Ultrasuede® covers many other elements. The end result is a high quality interior that fulfills all technical, safety, and visual expectations of a performance sports car.
Excellent visibility is facilitated in the front by a low nose that allows the driver to see the road ahead and by a clear view of the front fenders that facilitate precision turn-in at corners.
The Mastretta MXT is equipped with air conditioning to make the car suitable for long drives in any weather condition. For every day practicality, the in-car media system incorporates GPS navigation, iPod connectivity, hands-free communication via Bluetooth, a DVD player and other technological features.
The turbocharged 2.0 litre Duratec four cylinder engine is located behind the cockpit and in front of the rear axle, connected to a MTX-75 five-speed manual gearbox.
With a power output of 184 kW (250 hp) and 340 Nm (251 lb-ft) of torque, this aluminium power plant is excellently suited to the MXT as it is compact and lightweight, while delivering very good levels of performance and drivability.
A bespoke engine management system was developed for performance driving: it has immediate throttle response and a consistent torque output throughout the rev range, while the turbo lag is unnoticeable. The shift lights at the top of the digital instrument cluster indicate the exact time for gear changes, allowing the driver to make the most of the Mastretta MXT’s engine performance.
Built from specially designed aluminium extrusions and carbon fibre, the bespoke chassis of the MXT was engineered to provide high rigidity and low weight. The suspension of the Mastretta MXT perfectly complements the potential of the lightweight semi-monocoque and powerful engine, which results in outstanding levels of lateral grip and traction.
The semi-monocoque constitutes the basis to achieve the class-leading dynamics and performance of the car.
Aluminium extrusions and sheets are bonded together with aerospace industry-derived cold-cure adhesive to form the main cockpit tub. The carbon fiber floor beneath the entire cockpit area increases the car’s stiffness, while the lightweight steel rear subframe gives unity to the chassis and provides a strong backbone for the engine and rear suspension assembly. The aluminium fuel tank is placed within the monocoque, between the passenger cell and engine compartment.
The MXT features a fully independent double wishbone suspension front and rear, with a front anti-roll bar that further stabilizes the car in high speed corners. The shock absorbers and coil springs are finely tuned for grip. This setup provides optimum agility, stability and steering precision, while still delivering a high level of ride comfort.
The braking system consists of four piston callipers with cross-drilled rotors measuring 300 mm at all four corners. The synergy between the vehicle’s low mass, ideal weight distribution and powerful brakes allow the MXT to brake from 100 km/h to a halt in only 35 meters.
The Mastretta MXT is about performance. Advanced engineering, lightweight materials and a powerful engine act together to achieve the dynamics of the MXT. Steeped in the principles of modern racing technology, the MXT does not include driver aids or electronic assists that filter the driving experience. It is driving at its purest essence.
As a driver’s car, the most important development aim was to focus on optimizing acceleration, cornering and braking capabilities. With an overall weight of just over 900 kg and a turbocharged Duratec 2.0 litre engine producing 250 hp, the MXT accelerates from 0-100km/h in 4.9 seconds, and reaches a top speed of 230 km/h. The high-performance chassis can generate lateral acceleration of up to 1.1 G, making exceptional cornering speeds possible, while the fadeless braking system provides outstanding stopping power.
But despite its remarkable performance, the MXT is not intended to be a hardcore track day special that maximizes speed but offers no practicality. Thus, the car is very well suited for long-distance road driving, oriented towards spirited drivers who seek an exhilarating drive. Benefiting from its light weight, low centre of gravity and relatively long wheelbase, the chassis offers a fine balance between ride and handling. Despite its agility and power, it is easy to control even at the limit of grip.
The Mastretta MXT is a powerful machine designed to deliver outstanding performance through mechanical excellence. This requires the use of bespoke materials and components, and a construction process that blends advanced technology with careful craftsmanship.
From the construction of the aluminium chassis to the delicate finish of the composite body, Mastretta employs high quality manufacturing techniques that transformed concept into reality.
With a complete design and engineering package that is entirely new and developed in house, the MXT has about 1,800 separate purpose-built parts that fit together with utmost precision. The chassis is made from laser-cut aluminium sheets and extrusions that are bonded together with aerospace adhesive, complemented with a structural carbon-fibre floor and chromoly roll cage. As a result, the chassis is outstandingly light and rigid while providing maximum safety in the cockpit.
As the chassis is being manufactured, other departments fabricate all mechanical components and sub-assemblies, such as the hand-built suspension, engine structure, fuel tank and body panels. All parts undertake quality control testing before arriving in the assembly area, where the car is finally put together. Employing clever solutions that remain true to the purity of design, the MXT is built with only high quality components from specialized manufacturers.