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New York show: Saleen's supercharged Raptor

Blown: Raptor's force-fed ethanol V8 delivers 485kW and 854Nm.

Respected US performance tuner Saleen to produce a supercharged supercar by 2010

25 Mar 2008

SALEEN is a highly respected name in the US performance car scene and at last week's New York motor show the company unveiled a mid-engined supercar that it claims will compete with the Italian exotics.

Powering the S5S – which stands for Saleen 5.0-litre supercharged – is a hand-built ethanol-burning V8 with a Saleen-developed twin-screw supercharger that delivers 485kW of power and 854Nm of torque to the rear wheels.

Top speed is quoted at more than 200mph (320km/h) and claimed 0-100km/h acceleration occurs in just 3.2 seconds.

192 center imageThe Saleen S5S Raptor follows the race-bred 7.0-litre S7 that was designed by British constructor Ray Mallock Engineering, which was introduced in 2000 and grew twin turbochargers in 2005.

While that car was ultimately priced at US$585,000, the company says the S5S Raptor will be priced at around US$185,000 if it goes into production – which is planned within two years.

Transmissions are a six-speed manual or sequential auto, the chassis is made from aluminium, ABS and ESC are fitted and the 20-inch forged aluminium wheels with Pirelli Rosso tyres wrap around 15-inch brake rotors with six-piston callipers at the front and 13-inch rotors grabbed by twin-piton callipers at the rear.

Saleen, which built its reputation on producing modified Ford Mustangs, also announced in New York a partnership with racing legend Dan Gurney to build 300 blue Mustangs with white stripes in homage to Gurney’s 1969 Shelby-built TransAm racer.

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