World Debut in London for Sports Car that’s the Pride of Mexico

By Andy Bannister

07.18.2008

What’s said to be the first car ever to be designed and built entirely in Mexico makes its world debut next week at the British International Motor Show at London’s Excel Centre.

The 150mph MXT coupe – being shown in “penultimate prototype” form – is seriously intended to compete with the likes of Lotus and Porsche. It will, however, dramatically undercut them on price, and be pitched against other rivals from BMW and Audi.

When it goes on sale in the UK in mid-2009 (remarkably, in right hand drive form) it is likely to cost £33,000 ($66,000), with sales limited to 80 units in a year.

The rear-wheel drive MXT should hit 60mph in under five seconds and its 2.0-litre supercharged Duratec engine produces 240bhp. The lightweight car pumps out 267bhp per tonne – almost 50bhp more than a Porsche Cayman S.

The importers say the car is aimed at thrill seekers who also have an eye to the environment. These would-be owners want to have fun and enjoy driving without causing damage through their car’s excessive weight and power.

Constructed from bonded aluminium, the semi-monocoque chassis features aircraft style technology. Direct race-car feel comes through rack and pinion steering with 2.8 turns lock to lock, whilst 293mm ventilated brake discs with ABS as standard guarantee it can stop just as quickly as it goes

Stylistically the car looks spot on, with an aggressive and sculpted shape in fibreglass, which could easily be Italian in origin. A leather-trimmed interior completes what’s promised to be a world-class package.

Mastretta is the family company of designer Daniel Mastretta, and was founded in Mexico City in 1987. The company has been involved in styling everything from bottles to buses in the past.

Previous automotive ventures have included a Porsche Speedster replica, a beach buggy and a VW Beetle-based coupe, but the MXT is by far the company’s most ambitious car-related undertaking to date.

The Mastretta family say their aim is to make Mexicans proud that their country can produce a sports car which can compete on a global stage.

Mexico, of course, is already quite a major player in automobile production, with many multinationals taking advantage of the country’s low labour costs and proximity to the giant US market, where the MXT is also eventually heading – if all goes to plan.

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Author: Andy Bannister

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2 Comments

  1. Very nice car 🙂

    In Canada we got our own attempts of sports-cars like the Manic GT, Canadian Supercar MC4 who was propulsed by a Cadillac Northstar engine converted to use natural gas who was showed in the early 1990s at the Toronto Auto Show. Recently at the 2007 Montreal Auto show, there was the Locus (do not confuse it with Lotus) who use lots of carbon fiber.

  2. To imitate the President, I say, “bring it on” to the US.

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