Wednesday, March 4, 2009
Covini C6W: The first six-wheeled supercar with 400 horse power
At first, the Covini C6W looks awkward and unreal, as if someone had digitally pasted a second pair of front wheels on a classic supercar. But the car with four front wheels and two rear wheels is for real. Italian entrepreneur Ferrucio Covini first worked on a car with four front wheels more than 30 years ago. The claimed benefits of having four smaller, 16-inch front wheels (the rear are 20 inches in diameter) are reduced aerodynamic drag from the smaller frontal area, better braking, a smoother ride and a drastic reduction of understeer and hydroplaning. The downsides are the added weight, bulk and complexity of the front suspension. Regardless, the C6W is powered by an Audi-designed 4.2-liter 435-horsepower V8 driving the rear wheels through a 6-speed manual gearbox. The engine is midmounted in a structure that combines steel tubing and carbon fiber. The Covini C6W is still considered a prototype, albeit one that will soon be production-bound, according to Covini Engineering. However, there's no projected price on the maker's Web site.
ENGINE: rear, longitudinal, 8 cylinder in V formation, 4 valves per cylinder, naturally aspirated, petrol direct injection Bosch-motronic.
CAPACITY: 4200 cc
MAX POWER: 440 PS (325KW) at 6400 rpm
MAX TORQUE: about 470 Nm at 2700 rpm
TRANSMISSION: rear wheel drive transaxle
GEARBOX: mechanical 6-speed + reverse. Manual and electro-hydraulic steeringwheel mounted servo
CHASSIS: steel tubular with carbon fibre reinforcements and structural parts
SUSPENSION: independent front and rear wishbones
WHEELS AND TYRES: front 15in wheels with 205/45-15 tyres; rear 20in with 345/25-20 tyres
BRAKES: front and rear vented Brembo discs. Bosch servo and electronic brake distribution
BODYWORK: glass fibre and carbon fibre
DIMENSIONS: length 4180mm; width 1990mm; height 1080mm; wheelbase 2230mm/2750mm (to foremost/middle front transaxle); front track 1540mm; rear track 1620mm ; dry weight 1150Kg
TOP SPEED: 300Kph (185mph)