When it comes to motoring exotica, even the most clued-up of petrol head can’t name some cars, especially in the domain of the supercar.
Household names such as Ferrari, Lamborghini and Aston Martin roll off the tongue with ease, but there is fast becoming a noticeable number of obscure manufacturers trying to beat the main players at their own game.
Some ambitious new supercar firms have found modest success, whereas others have never got off the ground, but they are all weird and wonderful in their own way and here are some of the ones you may or may not have heard of.
Hennessy Venom GT
Based on the compact chassis of the last gen Lotus Exige, the Venom GT was once a contender for the world’s fastest car and did set a record for the fastest production car from 0-300kph (0-186mph) with an average time of 13.63sec.
To help it achieve such acceleration, the Venom GT makes use of a twin-turbocharged 7.0-litre V8 engine that pumps out a Bugatti Veyron-rivalling 1,244bhp. Hennessey claims the car can reach a top speed of 278mph, but the Venom’s successor – the F5 - hopes to hit 290mph with 1,400bhp on tap.
Aspid GT-21 Invictus
Spainisn’t really the first nation you think of when it comes to supercars; however, a little company called Aspid decided that consensus needed to change and as a result built the Aspid GT-21 Invictus.
Dubbed as the first open-wheel 2+2 GT in history, the Invictus is certainly unique in its design; meanwhile, the car’s lightweight sub-1,000kg form and 450bhp V8 ensures the Invictus is a rapid machine and capable of 0-62mph in under 3.0secs.
Another supercar from a nation not exactly steeped in automotive history, the Felino cB7 hails from Canada of all places and aims to be a track car for the road. Complete with a 6.2-litre V8 drivetrain, the cB7 certainly sounds the part and its carbon fibre structure means it weighs around 1,135kg.
Performance figures have yet to be disclosed, but we can be sure that the Felino will be a natty little plaything, and what’s more, the company’s racing driver-turned CEO Antoine Bessette wants the car to cost under $100,000.
As one of the fastest cars in the world, the Gumpert Apollo has gained some publicity, but not nearly as much as the likes of Pagani and co. Gumpert was set up in 2000 but didn’t release a production version of the Apollo until 2005.
Sourcing a V8 powerplant from friends at Audi, the Apollo is capable of 223mph in its fastest ‘Race Version’ guise that kicks out 789bhp and reaches 62mph from standstill in 3.1secs. Gumpert unfortunately entered into administration in 2012 but was reborn following these financial difficulties and is pushing ahead with new model the Explosion.
Tommy Kaira ZZII
Turning our attention to the Far East for our final obscure supercar, Tommy Kaira might be familiar with those who have spent endless hours on the Gran Turismo games; to most, however, that won’t be the case.
The best car Tommy Kaira ever made – in my eyes – was the ZZII which was armed with mid-mounted and heavily tuned Nissan Skyline engine that pumped out 542bhp, which was good enough for a claimed 210mph. The ZZII is arguably one of the prettiest models made by such a low volume manufacturer, but sadly in the end, the ZZII never actually made it into production.