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Future models - Savage - Rivale Roadyacht GTS

Dutch stylists create four-door drop-top

Sail of the Century: The supercharged V8-engined supercar features nautical themes, including teak wood floorboards.

Yacht-inspired Savage supercar claimed to be the world’s first four-door convertible

Savage logo5 Jun 2009

THIS might just look like yet another low-volume million dollar supercar, but this one has a major point of difference – it claims to be the world’s first four-door convertible.

Remarkably, the curiously named Savage Rivale Roadyacht GTS is the brainchild of two young Dutch designers who obviously have plenty of ambition to go with their talent – Emile Pop and Justin de Boer.

The duo took this first prototype from sketchpad to completion in just 18 months and over the past two months have wheeled it out at a number of high-profile events, starting with an unveiling at the AutoRai show in their home country of The Netherlands in front of the Dutch prime minister, and also Top Marques Monaco in Monte Carlo, where it attracted the attention of car-loving Prince Albert.

Bewerp Inc, the company formed by the car’s creators, plans to build only 20 examples of the Savage Rivale Roadyacht GTS starting in late 2010 – with five each in the colours of orange, gun metal, white and black according to the season in which they are built.

Price is on request and, although the company is reportedly still seeking investors to enable the project to mature, pre-orders are being invited accompanied by deposits of €65,000 ($A115,000).

Like many of the supercars sprouting up around the world these days, the Savage Rivale Roadyacht GTS is powered by Chevrolet’s ubiquitous Corvette ZR1 powertrain, the 6.2-litre LS7 V8 engine being supercharged (with twin intercoolers) to produce 500kW of power at 6200rpm and 730Nm of torque at 4800rpm.

143 center imageDriving the rear wheels through a standard GM-sourced automatic transmission, that’s good enough to launch the four-door hardtop cabrio from zero to 100km/h in just 3.4 seconds and on to a claimed top speed of “more than 330km/h” (205mph).

Fuel consumption is listed at a remarkable 9.4L/100km, although the car will not have been tested yet to the official Euro testing regime.

With a chassis frame fabricated from molybdenum chrome tubular steel, bodywork made in carbon-fibre and an exhaust system honed out of titanium, the Savage Rivale Roadyacht GTS weighs in at a relatively low 1280kg.

One of the most interesting aspects of the design, however, is the action of the rear doors, which are hinged from well back in the car, just ahead of the tail-lights, and includes part of the rear wheel-arch panel, revealing the fuel cap on one side when opened.

Although not evident in the prototype, the designers say the car has a retractable glass hard-top that can open or close in just 20 seconds.

Inspiration for the car is said to have come from luxury yachts – which explains the awkward Roadyacht aspect of the name, the two-tone paint job and, perhaps most bizarrely, the teak wood floorboards that dominate the interior.

Otherwise, the driver and passengers are confronted by a conventional interior layout decked out (pun intended) in alcantara, aluminium and more carbon-fibre, including the powered and heated seats.

The car rides on air-adjustable Corvette-based double-wishbone suspension, Koni shocks and custom-made Tenzo 19-inch alloy wheels wrapped in ultra-low-profile Toyo T1R tyres (255/25/20 front and 325/25/20 rear).

Braking is provided by eight-piston monobloc callipers at the front and four-piston units at the rear, gripping 380mm and 355mm two-piece discs respectively.

Emile Pop came up with the concept for the car in 2001 but was forced to abandon it two years later due to a lack of investors. He went back to college in The Hague to study industrial design.

But in 2005, he met Justin de Boer, whose computer software ability and business acumen enabled the project to be revived.

At the academy where they were still studying, the pair produced a quarter-scale model in late 2007 and sought help from specialised companies to turn it into reality. Within months, Justin had translated the design into the computer with 3D surface modelling and produced the full-size moulds while Emile designed the chassis to take the Corvette powertrain.

Production of the prototype began in August 2008, even before the interior design was completed, and continued through the early months of 2009 before being unveiled in Amsterdam on March 31 and then hitting the promotional circuit.

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