2019 VUHL 05RR
This little pocket-rocket from Mexico is back with a bang!by Sidd Dhimaan, on
When VUHL came out with the original 05 supercar back at the Good Festival of Speed in 2013, we were actually looking forward to seeing it soon in its production form; after all, there aren’t many small supercar manufacturers to begin with. Fast forward to 2019 and VUHL is back in the news with the 05’s meaner version dubbed the 05 RR. The 2019 VUHL 05RR is the production version that comes with 400 horses, 370 pound-feet of torque, and a lightweight body that makes this little toy car zip around bends with the best of them. The 2019 VUHL 05RR is worth the wait as it aces its rivals in almost all departments.
2019 VUHL 05RR
Horsepower @ RPM:400
Torque @ RPM:370
0-60 time:2.7 sec.
Top Speed:170 mph
Not all of you may remember VUHL (Vehicles of Ultra-lightweight and High Performance). This Mexican company builds lightweight supercars and made their first appearance in 2013 with a toy car dubbed the VUHL 05. The prototypes looked promising, but the company was quite inconsistent and never really got going. It made a cameo again three years later with a meaner version of the initial car that competed in the Goodwood’s Michelin Supercar Paddock, only to disappear again. However, the production version of VUHL’s 05RR has started doing rounds now, and we are interested yet again.
VUHL is actually quite an old company. It was founded by brothers Guillermo and Iker Echeverria.
The company debuted a lightweight, road-legal supercar dubbed the 2014 VUHL 05 at the 2013 Goodwood Festival of Speed.
Three years later, the company came out with a slightly more powerful version of the 05, dubbed the 05 RR at the same event. However, the company would fade away never to be heard from....until now. Now, suddenly, it looks like the VUHL 05RR has finally entered production and we have details about it.
2019 VUHL 05RR Exterior
The 2019 05RR is identical to the earlier iterations that we have seen. However, the new lime green paint job with black highlights accentuates the carbon fiber body a lot more than what we saw on the 2017 05RR. For what it’s worth, the color combination makes the supercar look meaner and aggressive, which is not a bad thing at all. The ‘01’ on the hood is literally a disclaimer – not meant for weak-hearted, sedate drivers.
The 05RR carries over the same three-bulb headlamp unit, corner air inlets, and air dam.
The Pagani Zonda-type rear view mirrors add a lot of character to the 05RR, and there is no change on the side either. The wheels are as far into the corners as possible which, along with an engine that is placed closer to the ground, means the car has a lower center of gravity, thus keeping the car planted at high speeds.
The Pirelli Pzero tires with star-shaped alloys look stunning. The VUHL-branded yellow brake callipers on large discs continue the color code of the 05RR. Unlike mainstream cars, which generally have a busy front fascia that slowly mellows down by the time you reach to the rear, the 05RR is quite proportionate that way. The rear has a striking resemblance to the Koenigsegg Agera R.
The full-width spoiler with ‘05RR’ branding is perhaps the best thing on the car; aesthetically.
The single exhaust outlet is placed bang in the center surrounded by a V-shaped honeycomb mesh grille.
2019 VUHL 05RR Interior
The company has not provided full shots of the interior.
The ‘teaser’ images show a new Alacantra steering wrap; this time with yellow accents.
The cabin is also made up of carbon fiber, and the same design is carried onto the seats as well. The 2019 VUHL 05RR is nowhere close to being a tech-friendly car. The 05RR knows its purpose – to drive, and drive fast. Like, really fast. It does not offer the electronic shenanigans or as I call them, the sale-making gimmicks.
2019 VUHL 05RR Drivetrain
The 2019 VUHL 05RR is based on the 05 that brought the company into prominence.
It is powered by a Ford-sourced, 2.3-liter, EcoBoost engine that produces a mammoth 400 horses and 370 pound-feet of torque.
The car now weighs a mere 1,455 pounds dry - 143 pounds lighter than the original concept. This weight reduction and a 40-percent increase in power has resulted in the supercar eclipsing the power-to-weight ratio of the 2011 Bugatti Veyron! Thanks to its lightweight and track-car dynamics, the 2019 VUHL 05 RR can reach 60 mph from a standstill in just 2.7 seconds before topping out at 170 miles per hour. It is also equipped with a carbon body, sequential gearbox, and a racier clutch and flywheel to help it achieve these astonishing figures.
VUHL has placed the engine 50 mm lower to drop the 05 RR’s center of gravity. Even though it has a road-legal status, it would make sense to take this track-focused powerbomb to the circuit to unleash its true potential. That is precisely why the company is planning to sell the car with an array of upgrades tailored for the track. Goodies include slick tires, bespoke suspension setup, a limited-slip differential, and special tuning of the steering for track use.
2019 VUHL 05RR specifications
|Engine||Ford-sourced, 2.3-liter, EcoBoost|
|0 to 60 mph||2.7 seconds|
|Top Speed||170 mph|
2019 VUHL 05RR Pricing
VUHL has not revealed pricing details for the United States, but the company is already selling the 05RR in Mexico as well as in Europe and the U.S. In the U.K., the built-to-order 05 RR, with the performance package, costs £95,995, which is approximately $124,000.
2019 VUHL 05RR Competition
The car looks mighty sexy and dare I say, much better than the competition that includes the likes of Ariel Atom 4, KTM X-Bow, and the Caterham Seven 620. The 05 RR is also the fastest of the lot, with the Atom 4 and Seven 620 being slower by ten milliseconds, and the X-Bow completing the same drill in 3.9 seconds. In terms of top speed, the VUHL takes the gold, eclipsing even the Ariel Atom 4 by eight mph.
|2019 Vuhl 05 RR||2019 Ariel Atom 4||2019 Caterham Seven 620||2019 KTM X-Bow|
|Engine||Ford 2.3-liter EcoBoost||Honda 2.0-liter||Ford 2.0-liter Duratec||Audi 2.0-liter|
|Horsepower||400 HP||320 HP||310 HP||296 HP|
|Torque||370 LB-FT||310 LB-FT||219 LB-FT||310 LB-FT|
|0-60 MPH||2.7 Seconds||2.8 Seconds||2.8 Seconds||3.9 Seconds|
|Top Speed||170 MPH||162 MPH||155 MPH||143 MPH|
|Weight||1,455 LBS||1,312 LBS||1,201 LBS||1,763 LBS|
I, for one, have fallen in love with looks of the 2019 VUHL 05RR. These tiny supercars are products where automakers can really experiment with the aesthetics by making them look bizarre, sedate, weird, or tasteful. The Caterham looks a little retro, the KTM X-Bow has a lot going on with its body, and the Ariel Atom 4 is just too plain when compared to the competition. The 2019 VUHL 05RR, on the other hand, is a perfect blend of all things good and will please everyone. With that said, looks are, of course, subjective.
Coming to its potential, the 05RR is a mean machine that is here to show who the boss is. Understanding that it is here to win the crown from the established players, I believe VUHL should have worked a little more on the drivetrain. With these specs, the 05RR is on par with the competition, not exceedingly better. We are not sure why VUHL did not think this through, but the only logical explanation is to keep the costs in check. Pricing is probably the last thing to think about if you are catering to a specific set of customers with a niche car. See Aston Martin with the AMR Performance Pack, for instance. If you had to pick one of the four tiny supercars, which one would it be? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.
Read our full review on the 2014 VUHL 05.
Read our full review on the 2017 VUHL 05RR.