RE: Evoluto's 'peak analogue' Ferrari 348

RE: Evoluto's 'peak analogue' Ferrari 348

Tuesday 12th March

Evoluto's 'peak analogue' Ferrari 348

Surrey-based Evoluto has set out to produce the ultimate analogue supercar. The boss explains why



As our weekend feature on Lanzante’s F1-engined 911 showed, Porsches are well catered for in the restomod market. But Ferraris, perhaps because of the regard in which many hold the Prancing Horse, rarely go under the engineer’s knife. Founder of Surrey-based Evoluto Automobili, Callum Davis, noticed this hole in the market a couple of years ago, when he and a couple of friends began talking about the untapped potential of the 348. But not just in the sense that one could be modernised, in the sense that it could form a base to create the ultimate atmospheric driver’s car. Something he’s now setting out to do for real.

“The performance benchmark for our car is a Ferrari 458 Speciale and, in terms of connection to the driver, the Porsche Carrera GT,” said Davis, a longstanding automotive businessman with a lifelong passion for cars. “We believe these are two of the best modern driver’s cars because they’re so engaging to drive. If you push them to 100 per cent, you feel everything that they’re doing 100 per cent.”

Davis described this as “peak analogue”, something he said was the primary philosophy behind the enhanced 348 that he, his two co-founders – a former racer and an ex-McLaren employee, no less – and team at eight-month-old Evoluto are currently working on. At this stage, just seven people are directly hands on in the project, although Davis said up to 20 more are indirectly involved through external suppliers and partners. Mule 1 is still about six months from completion, but the most important ingredients have long been decided on.


Let’s start with the engine. Gone is the 348’s 3.4-litre V8, in its place the 360's more advanced 3.6-litre, ramped up to produce a target 500hp – a gain of 100hp over standard, although something Ferrari reportedly achieved back in the ‘90s with the racing 355, once restrictors were removed. Along with its extra pace, the high-revving five valve per cylinder engine will breathe through a less restrictive race exhaust. Add a six-speed manual and, well, loins will be stirred.

“The 355 has played a big influence in the car’s design as well, which we’d describe as an homage to the best Ferraris,” added Davis. “The 355 is a special car to me, not just because it is such a great Ferrari but also because it was the first proper supercar I experienced up close. We’ve integrated some of its lines and features into the 348 and the feedback has been really good!”

Looks fantastic, doesn’t it? Just the right amount of added thickness to appear purposeful without hurting the prettiness of a vintage Ferrari supercar. Of course, there’s some flamboyancy in the design too, see the clear engine deck for example, plus those taillights look like they’ve taken influence from the 488 GTB. But it combines to create something so desirable. Little wonder Evoluto’s received enquiries from all over the world despite having only put out a few renders.


“We’re taking the handling very seriously, as that’ll be what sells it over the looks and straight-line performance,” said Davis. “We’ve got a lead guy for setup who’s come from racing, who’ll be working with racing drivers to use in their experience in deciding the final setup. It’s still under discussion, but we want this to be a very rewarding car to drive at all speeds.”

The 348 is a good base to start from – it’s known to some as the first genuinely usable Ferrari, having set the agenda for all midship V8 Berlinettas right up to today’s new F8 Tributo, after all. But Davis believes modern hardware can unlock a far broader range of talents, from docile daily usability to effective track work. And for those only interested in the latter, a more extreme version could also be in the works.

“In 24-36 months we’ll do a one-off racing specification vehicle where we’ll strip the weight down even more,” continues Davis. “It’ll be a fun project to see how far we can take this idea, but with a serious ambition to really push the power-to-weight ratio. It could provide us with the ideas for following projects, which might use more exotic materials such as carbon composites.”


Before then, however, it’s full steam ahead on the first car. While projects as innovative as these can so often come across unforeseen hurdles, if all goes to plan, Davis hopes to build around five cars per year from the second half of 2019, with build times for each taking between nine and twelve months. He added that with further investment “we could take that to nine cars”.

“We want to keep this exclusive, but we don’t want to be reducing a car to the level of exclusivity that people who buy it can’t enjoy it,” he said, referring to how ultra-low-volume machines often live lives of minimal use. “We want people to enjoy this car and we also want every single one to have a very thorough base spec, so no car is better than another.”

All will be Evoluto’s ultimate expression of the analogue supercar. Music to our ears, right? Prices will, inevitably, be up in the realms of exotica; the extent of the work involved in developing such a car is no small thing, as we all know. But Davis says they’re aiming to undercut the usual prices of cars like this, including products from the likes of Singer, which Davis admits to really admiring.

“We’re trying to be down to earth, not pomp and circumstance,” he said. “We want to produce something that’s an alternative version of reality, something to celebrate the very best of Ferrari.” And what more noble pursuit could there be than that?





Author
Discussion

mrclav

Original Poster:

748 posts

162 months

Tuesday 12th March
quotequote all
Aren't Ferrari really sensitive about this sort of thing? And those wheels? Hell no.

tomwoodis

568 posts

123 months

Tuesday 12th March
quotequote all
Looks fantastic!

Cold

6,335 posts

29 months

Tuesday 12th March
quotequote all
Nice renders. Anything actually exist?

RumbleOfThunder

2,684 posts

142 months

Tuesday 12th March
quotequote all
Fantastic idea, I just hope it comes to fruition. The 348 has all the ingredients for restomod treatment.

gigglebug

996 posts

61 months

Tuesday 12th March
quotequote all
I wonder if there is a specific reason why they didn't just start with a 355 in the first place as oppose to making a 348 more like one?
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80sMatchbox

3,625 posts

115 months

Tuesday 12th March
quotequote all

Singer make a newer car look older. This is an older car look slightly newer.

I like the look of it but then I like the look of a 355. The problem here is that it's going to cost a lot more than a 355. But then again in not their target market.

If I had a spare xxx amount for a special 5th or 6th car, I would be interested.

Snubs

765 posts

78 months

Tuesday 12th March
quotequote all
gigglebug said:
I wonder if there is a specific reason why they didn't just start with a 355 in the first place as oppose to making a 348 more like one?
Was thinking exactly the same thing.

Also I'm guessing you could buy a 355 and add some suspension / engine mods of your choosing for less than this will cost. The thing is with cars like the Eagle E-Type and Singer Porches they improved the looks, to my eyes at least. Will this end up looking better than an original 355? I doubt it. I like the rear lights but the risk of it looking like a 355 kit car loom large....

Gameface

7,561 posts

16 months

Tuesday 12th March
quotequote all
I don't get it.

What's the point of the 348 when it uses the 355 engine and wants to look like a 355?

Weird.


Robert-nszl1

347 posts

27 months

Tuesday 12th March
quotequote all
gigglebug said:
I wonder if there is a specific reason why they didn't just start with a 355 in the first place as oppose to making a 348 more like one?
My thought exactly! Dynamically better to start with, better looking, and still a car that could be sympathetically improved

Cloudy147

1,833 posts

122 months

Tuesday 12th March
quotequote all
Snubs said:
gigglebug said:
I wonder if there is a specific reason why they didn't just start with a 355 in the first place as oppose to making a 348 more like one?
Was thinking exactly the same thing.

Also I'm guessing you could buy a 355 and add some suspension / engine mods of your choosing for less than this will cost. The thing is with cars like the Eagle E-Type and Singer Porches they improved the looks, to my eyes at least. Will this end up looking better than an original 355? I doubt it. I like the rear lights but the risk of it looking like a 355 kit car loom large....
I was also thinking the same. It sounds like a 348 is being modified to look and drive like a 355 Challenge, with added DRLs and modern suspension stuff. :-s

Addymk2

265 posts

111 months

Tuesday 12th March
quotequote all
Why would you use the 355 engine? Surely it would be cheaper to buy 360 engines? Then it's already a more powerful base.

This seems odd.

But it does look great. Especially the rear.

f1ten

1,785 posts

92 months

Tuesday 12th March
quotequote all
It’s a beautiful thing. I really like the design detail and the engine sounds like a peach with it being 355 with some modern uptake. My god that will sound good !

Water Fairy

2,775 posts

94 months

Tuesday 12th March
quotequote all
mrclav said:
Aren't Ferrari really sensitive about this sort of thing? And those wheels? Hell no.
Yes, unless they're doing it themselves of course.......................................................

Esceptico

1,592 posts

48 months

Tuesday 12th March
quotequote all
Personally I don't like it. Not as pretty as a 355.

A few years back I saw a 348 GT Competizione for sale (£100k I think). I wish I had bought it. Much lighter than a standard 348 and properly rare.

rodericb

1,602 posts

65 months

Tuesday 12th March
quotequote all
Go and wreck a 355 ya heathens! Leave those 348's alone!

Nerdherder

511 posts

36 months

Tuesday 12th March
quotequote all
"We’ve got a lead guy for..." I actually vomited a little.

Nicely rendered arse by the way.

LotusOmega375D

4,115 posts

92 months

Tuesday 12th March
quotequote all
gigglebug said:
I wonder if there is a specific reason why they didn't just start with a 355 in the first place as oppose to making a 348 more like one?
Proprietor wanders round the backyard of his workshop. "Now that their values have fallen through the floor, what the hell am I going to do with that knackered old 348 and that crashed 355?" biggrin

Nerdherder

511 posts

36 months

Tuesday 12th March
quotequote all
Esceptico said:
A few years back I saw a 348 GT Competizione for sale (£100k I think). I wish I had bought it. Much lighter than a standard 348 and properly rare.
If funds permitted at the time I think you owe us an explanation of what stopped you going for it. wink

sladeburn

8 posts

32 months

Tuesday 12th March
quotequote all
I always absolutely loved the 348.

Tell me that is not a fantastic looking car.

But I think this looks more like a 355 though

gl20

721 posts

88 months

Tuesday 12th March
quotequote all
First two images look great. But some of the others are a bit MR2>Ferrari conversion