The 2019 Geneva Motor Show Will be Graced by a 965-Horsepower Hybrid Known as the 2019 Puritalia Berlinetta
Boutique customization combines with electrified performanceby Jonathan Lopez, on
The Geneva Motor Show is a still a month away, but we’re already getting the low-down on some of the ultra-hot debuts slated to show. One of the first out the gates is the 2019 Puritalia Berlinetta, a bespoke two-door from the Naples-based Puritalia Automobili, which promises nearly four-figures of output thanks to a high-tech V-8 hybrid powerplant. It this a sign of the times?
More Italian Supercars Is Never A Bad Thing
It’s been about five years since we last heard from Puritalia Automobili. The first time this small Italian supercar-maker made a noticeable splash was in 2014 with something it called the 427 Roadster, but now, Puritalia is offering up a fresh model called the Berlinetta, which was brought to our attention courtesy of a recent post from the German website Auto Motor und Sport.
Given the name, it should come as no surprise that this Italian sports car comes to the party rocking a two-door coupe body style, making a clear break from the previous open-top model.
However, the Berlinetta still looks to draw its style from the previous 427, as evidenced by a set of recently unveiled teaser images like the one seen above.
Like the 427 roadster, the Berlinetta appears to draw its design inspiration from the classic Shelby Cobra 427, with a long hood line, rounded curves, and a short, stocky wheelbase. The front end gets an oval-shaped main intake, plus oval-shaped headlights as well. The profile uses the classic Berlinetta roofline, which sinks deep into a rounded rear end. The fenders are hugely flared, while the taillights are sharp. Spent gasses are ejected via a pair of squared-off exhaust tips integrated with the rear bumper.
So it’ll most likely look pretty good. However, the most interesting bit is under the hood, where the Puritalia Berlinetta promises a front-, mid-mounted V-8 hybrid powerplant. Thanks to a supporting role from a single electric motor for the rear axle, output for this setup comes to 965 horsepower and 920 pound-feet of torque.
That’s a lot of output, especially when stuffed into something this lightweight. Outside, the Berlinetta’s body panels are made from carbon fiber, while underneath there’s a carbon fiber monocoque and aluminum subframe.
Puritalia also promises a perfect 50:50 weight distribution for better handling.
Extra details include a variety of drive modes accessed by a large touchscreen in the dash. Alternatively, you can use your smartphone, which will enable a number of remote feature controls through a custom app. Puritalia also wants to include an “auto-learning” system with cloud-based AI to maximize the electric power on tap.
The 2019 Puritalia Berlinetta will be limited to just 150 examples total, each of which will be tailor-made to the customer’s preferences. So far, no pricing or on-sale date has been released, but it’s safe to assume a number around the seven-figure mark for the latter.
Looking Forward By Looking Back
|Note: 2015 Puritalia 427 Roadster pictured here.|
We’ll have to wait until after the 2019 Geneva Motor Show for all the details on the 2019 Puritalia Berlinetta, but for now, we can look to the 427 roadster for clues.
As we mentioned previously, the 427 takes its cues from the legendary Shelby Cobra 427, albeit with some modern Italian touches added on top. Like the iconic muscle car, the Roadster is also relatively small, measuring in at just over 171 inches in overall length. That makes it about an inch shorter than a modern Porsche 718 Boxster.
Inside, the Puritalia 427 comes with a set of classic analogue gauges, but we know these will be replaced with a modern set of digital equipment on the Berlinetta.
Expect touchscreens and customizability galore, hopefully with few hard buttons to be found. Details (upholstery material, trim material, colors, stitching, etc.) will be completely up the customer.
As for motivation, the 2015 Puritalia 427 is powered by a 5.0-liter Ford V-8 plucked out of the engine bay of the Mustang. Both a naturally aspirated and supercharged variant were on offer, with the former making 445 horsepower and 390 pound-feet of torque, and the latter making 605 horsepower and 427 pound-feet of torque.
And that’s really what makes the 2019 Puritalia Berlinetta so interesting. Never mind the fact it’s a boutique Italian supercar - those are a dime a dozen at the Geneva Motor Show. Rather, it’s the fact this is a hybrid that really has our attention.
Usually, boutique automaker makers prefer something more traditional - you know, like a twin-turbo V-8.
After all, if you don’t have the resources to develop something completely in-house, you’re gonna want something simple and reliable. A custom high-powered hybrid doesn’t necessarily fit that criteria.
Of course, there are exceptions - Koenigsegg is one good example. But we’re not talking about Koenigsegg. We’re talking about a tiny Italian outfit with single five-year-old model to its name.
But I think all that points to where the industry is headed. No doubt about it - hybrid supercars are on the rise.
For example, Ferrari, one of the last holdouts when it comes the adoption of electrified technology, recently confirmed that it was working on a new
V-8 hybrid-powered supercarart184614
for a debut sometime later this year (not in Geneva, unfortunately).
So then - is hybrid the way forward?
Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.
Read our full review on the 2013 Puritalia 427 concept.
Read our full review on the 2015 Puritalia 427 Roadster.
Source: Auto Motor Und Sport