Wiesmann Is Coming Back - Here’s the First Teaser of Its M5-Powered Sports Car
Could this be the model that allows Wiesmann to break through its glass ceiling?by Kirby Garlitos, on
It’s been a while since we last heard from Wiesmann. The German automaker, which was founded in 1988, has been in and out of our lives in recent years, but it wasn’t until 2018 when reports surfaced of Weismann’s plans to develop a new sports car. One year later, those plans are taking shape. The aforementioned sports car is on schedule to make its debut at the 2019 Frankfurt Motor Show in September, and while we’ve yet to see the model beyond a teaser image that barely reveals anything, this sports car is expected to be completely different from the models Wiesmann has introduced in the past. There’s a good chance it’ll still carry Weismann’s retro-inspired design philosophy, but looking at the sports car’s profile from this teaser image also makes us wonder if Wiesmann has a few surprises in store for us when it pulls the covers off its new pride and joy in Frankfurt next month.
For some reason, I’ve always found Wiesmann to be one of the most intriguing niche automakers in the business. It started in 1988, and in all the years that it’s been around, it hasn’t deviated from its design philosophy - a lot of its models have looked the same outside of the body type they were presented in — and it has completely relied on BMW to supply the engines for its cars. The automaker made it work for a while, but the lack of adaptability and resources forced it to close shop in 2014, ending a 26-year run that lasted longer than it probably should.
Four years after closing its doors, reports started bubbling into the surface that some U.K.-based Indian investors bought Wiesmann with plans to revive the brand as early as this year.
The initial goal, the reports said, was to introduce a new sports car that would, once again, tap into BMW’s vast powertrain lineup. The ravens grew quiet for a time, but now they’re all back in flight, announcing the arrival of said sports car at the 2019 Frankfurt Motor Show next month.
The yet-to-be-identified model is Wiesmann’s first offering since the automaker’s revival. Not much is known about it other than the use of a V-8 engine that the automaker plans to source from, you guessed it, BMW. A single teaser image was also released, giving us our first look — for what that’s worth — at the new Wiesmann sports car.
Truth be told, it’s not much of a teaser as it is an image of a completely covered-up sports car that doesn’t show a single thing worth mentioning. Fortunately, we do get to see the sports car’s profile, and if you know Weismann’s history of past models, there are several details here that are worth mentioning. The first and probably most obvious is how this new model looks a lot bigger than any of Wiesmann’s past models. Perhaps the angle of the photo has something to do with it, though it’s hard not to notice how wide the model looks. The side profile, in particular, is muscular in a way none of Weismann’s past models were. The profile also shows a flat roof that you normally only see from soft-top roofs. Could it be that this model is actually a roadster and not a coupe? There’s certainly some precedent to that, at least as far as Wiesmann is concerned.
Some of the automaker’s past models — the MF30 and MF3 come to mind — were presented as retro-styled roadsters with fabric roofs.
At least in this instance, the fruit doesn’t appear to have fallen too far from the tree.
The other detail worth mentioning is the car’s front grille. It’s largely similar to the front grille that we saw on all of Weismann’s past models. Two headlight clusters flank the grille, but we can’t identify their shape and design at the moment. Parts of me can somehow picture what kind of car this new Wiesmann is going to look like, but it’s still difficult to put the pieces together, in part because we’re talking about new ownership that may or may not be as invested in sticking to the automaker’s roots. For all we know, this new Wiesmann looks completely different from the style and design that we’ve become accustomed to. It’s a little exciting, I must say, to have so many unanswered questions about the model, making it all the more intriguing.
Even the car’s powertrain setup comes with its own share of mysteries. At this point, we know that it will carry a BMW-sourced V-8 engine.
That’s about it. No details were given, but we assume that the V-8 in question is the 4.4-liter twin-turbocharged S63 engine that we can all find in the current BMW M5. This is probably the most intriguing aspect of the model because if Wiesmann is using the S63 engine for this model, we could be looking at a car that’s packing 600 horsepower and 553 pound-feet of torque. Stretch your imaginations further and that output could grow to as much as 625 horsepower, the same output the BMW M5’s own V-8 engine is carrying in Competition spec.
|Config/No of cyls/valves||V/8/4|
|Engine technology||M TwinPower Turbo technology with cross-bank exhaust manifold, M TwinScroll TwinTurbo, indirect charge air cooling, High Precision Injection, maximum injection pressure 350 bar, VALVETRONIC fully variable valve timing, Double-VANOS variable camshaft timing|
|Effective capacity cc||4,395|
|Compression ratio :1||10.0|
|Horsepower||600 HP @ 5,600 – 6,700 RPM|
|Torque||553 LB-FT @ 1,800 – 5,600 RPM|
|Transmission||Eight-speed M Steptronic|
|0 to 60 mph||3.4 seconds|
|Top Speed||155 mph|
I’m not saying that it won’t be anything short of 600 ponies because there’s a chance that Wiesmann receives a de-tuned spec of the twin-turbo V-8 that better suits the automaker’s new sports car. But even if that’s the case, you can expect this new model to pack far more power than the most powerful model Wiesmann launched — the 420-horsepower GT MF4-CS — in its previous incarnation.
Whatever the case is, Weismann’s return to the automotive scene is shaping up to be an intriguing moment at the 2019 Frankfurt Motor Show. Is the German automaker ready for its second run in the industry, and, if so, in what form will it take shape? Are we seeing the old Wiesmann or are we going to see a completely new automaker with a completely different identity and a different vision for its brand and its future? A lot of questions will be answered in Frankfurt next month. Here’s to hoping that the new Wiesmann answers them all correctly.
Read our full review on the 2008 Wiesmann GT MF5.
Read our full review on the 2018 BMW M5.