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New lightweight sportscar arrives

Aquila brings compact, old-style open-top motoring

By / Thursday, December 22, 2005

The Romero version
The Romero version
Mille Miglia version
Mille Miglia version
Interior fairly sparse
Interior fairly sparse
The Julietta version
The Julietta version

There's a new sports car on the block. We Brits never seem to tire of making sports cars using the tried and tested formula of a steel chassis topped with GRP body panels, and the Aquila is no exception.

The swoopily-styled Aquila, which sits on a ladder-framed chassis, has more than a hint of Morgan about it, with a hint of Bugatti in there too.

Motive power consists of a Ford Zetec, DOHC, eight-valve, EFI engine, although other engine options include a four-pot, a straight-six and a Rover V8 -- though you have to wonder where the V8s will come from. It's not that quick though, with the Ford motor rated at 130bhp offering zero to 60mph in some 6.7 seconds and a top whack of 120mph.

The interior looks fairly basic but is designed, in the words of the company's press release, so that "creature comforts are ensured and craftsmanship is visible in every tight fitting joint and in the cockpit’s luxurious styling. Truly built for fast touring in the grand manner, the interior cradles one in crafted comfort."

Tech specs

  • Chassis: Semi-monocoque perimeter frame with 100x50x3.2mm sealed box section main rails and a mix of 14 and 16 gauge steel bulkheads.
  • Body: Unstressed GRP nose scuttle, bonnet, rear section and bolt on wings. 12-gauge aluminium double-skinned, steel-framed doors.
  • Front suspension: Ford Stub-axle and lower track-control arm, 20mm tie bars, and AVO mini McPherson struts. Fully adjustable.
  • Rear suspension: De-Dion with four equal length one-inch, 14-gauge trailing arms, and a Panhard rod. Avo adjustable coilspring damper units. De Dion tube 23/4-inch outer diameter DOM tube with 12 degree bend.
  • Engine option: Four cylinder straight six, V6 and Rover V8.
  • Engine fitted: Ford Zetec, DOHC, 8-valve, EFI with catalytic converter.
  • Transmission: Ford MT75, five speed manual gearbox.
  • Wheels / tyres: 7x14" alloys rims fitted with 185/65/14-inch radials. Optional 15-inch rims.
  • Weight: approx. 750 Kg

Now owned by Milan Mladenovic, who bought the company from Don Burt, the Aquila is built in new premises in Rainham, Essex. We're trying to get more information out of the company -- such as the price -- and as soon as we do, we'll let you know.

It launches in April.

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