Smit Oletha: V8 GT engine based on BMW Z4 Car News

It’s a prototype, but the Smits are looking at a price tag of $450,000 (£365,000) for an Oletha with the V8. If they stayed with the six rights it would still be $350,000 (£285,000).

The brothers are still tweaking the dynamics, but still have to settle on a set of suspension bushings that don’t allow rebound through the steering and decide on settings for the currently too firm adjustable KW suspension. Also, they think the steering is too light. But they tell me they’d like to configure the Oletha as a road car primarily, rather than a track car, and that we should take an afternoon lap on good roads to find out how it feels. So we do.

You sit low in the Oletha. The riding position initially feels slightly off, but after a minute I forget about it. The steering wheel adjusts wide, the shifter is close, and the pedals have their standard, heavy BMW feel. The engine starts with a bang, the hood stretches forward and, like in a Z4, I feel like I’m sitting close to the rear axle – with undertones of muscle car, grand tourer, of old-fashioned sports car.

As a used car salesman giving you a list of things wrong with the car, I think it shows a lot of confidence when the engineers tell you what work needs to be done.

We cycle the coast road briefly and I see what the Smits mean about the ride (a bit firm), steering weight (a bit light) and recoil (a bit peppy). But then we turn to what Americans call canyon roads, which you and I know are some of the twistiest, emptiest, best roads you’ll ever encounter, and it just gets better. Much, much better.

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This notice was published: 2022-06-17 23:01:24

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