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Bertone's 476kW Praying Mantis

2009-04-21 08:26
Vehicle Specs
Manufacturer BERTONE
Model Mandtide
Engine 6.2l, supercharged V8
Power 476kW @ 6 500r/min
Torque 820Nm
Transmission Six-speed manual
Zero To Hundred 3.2 seconds
Top Speed 350km/h
Weight 1 420kg
Embattled Italian design house Bertone has unveiled a spectacular Corvette ZR-1 design concept in Shanghai.

Badged the Mantide, this two-door supercar blends pushrod V8 power with daringly futuristic Italian design flair, it might be an unusual marriage, but on the surface, it looks enthralling. Why it had to be codenamed the Italian word for Praying Mantis though, we’re not quite sure.

Leaving the overly flowing design language to Italian competitor Pininfarina, Bertone has over the years always showcased a more adventurous style to design projects.

The Mantide then, is allegedly inspired by modern aerospace design and regulated by Formula One aerodynamic principles.

Bertone design, penned by a former Pininfarina man, employing GM underpinnings. Such a state of affairs could only come together in Italy.

Styling looks crazy, work miracles

Essentially, the result is a strongly geometric design, which manages to retain the classic, long-nose supercar proportions dictated by the Corvette chassis layout.

It looks completely mad, yet Bertone says all the otherworldly surfacing, edges and shapes are authentically functional, and aid airflow stability at speed – Mantide allegedly has a quarter less drag than the standard ZR-1.

The design is so detail rich, and littered with unique surfacing and aerodynamic embellishments, you could easily produce a PhD dissertation on just the rear, front or side-profile styling alone.

Functionally, a flat undertray and rear diffuser contribute to render 30% greater down force than the ZR-1 chassis would usually strain under with a standard Corvette body on top.

Copious use of carbon-fibre in the bodywork and interior trimmings manage to bin 100kg of mass too.

Forget Moon buggy analogies, this looks like a Mars buggy. Styling is utterly mad, six-spoke wheel design superb.

Massive performance potential

What the GM sourced 6.2l, supercharged V8 lacks in overhead camshafts, it makes up for in Eaton addled forced induction, producing 476kW of power, and 820Nm of rotation shaft force.

Unsurprisingly, the Mantide clips the 0-100km/h sprint in 3.2 seconds and is designed with a 350km/h top speed in mind.

Mantide was penned by American design maverick (and former Pininfarina employee) Jason Castriota, who’s other work include Maserati’s 75th anniversary Birdcage and unique Ferrari collaborations for discerning collectors.

Currently the Mantide remains a one-off concept, funded by a wealthy individual customer.

Bertone has said it could fulfill additional orders if there is sufficient demand.


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