One of the great Italian design houses that found itself on hard times this past decade, Bertone is now set to make a comeback as a modern coach builder. It’s given a first look at what the future holds with the GB110, a 1,100-hp hypercar that opens an intriguing new chapter in the brand’s history. While there’s nothing particularly cutting-edge about an ICE-driven supercar these days, Bertone plans to partner up and supply this one with sustainable fuel made from plastic waste.
Founded in 1912, Bertone is the oldest of the great Italian design houses. It had more than a century of design, coach-building and vehicle manufacturing experience under its belt before going into bankruptcy in 2014. After some ownership shuffling, brothers Mauro and Jean-Franck Ricci emerged with a vision of celebrating the brand’s history while building it into a modern coach builder of advanced hypercars. The Riccis acquired rights to the Bertone brand in 2020, bringing 38 years of automotive industry and engineering experience to the helm.
Not surprisingly, the Riccis chose to honor Bertone’s legacy by sculpting the type of wedge-like coupe that was pioneered by iconic designs like the 1970 Lancia Stratos HF Zero and the Lamborghini Countach. They’ve fully reimagined the wedge for the modern era, adding in more three-dimensional, curvaceous body panels, a sweeping curved nose, and aggressive aero components like the huge front splitter and rear diffuser. The team credits the Stratos Zero and earlier Alfa Romeo Carabo for the claw-like rear bodywork that frames out the scissor doors and passenger compartment.
Bertone’s stylish GB110 skin gets mounted to a chassis built with German components. It rides double wishbones in front and back and includes coil springs, anti-roll bars and four-way adjustable damping.
Power comes from a beefy internal combustion engine of undisclosed size and origin, which drives all four wheels through an AWD system. As of now, Bertone’s plan is to avoid basic gasoline and diesel, instead working with Nevada company Select Fuel to power the GB110 with sustainable fuel made from plastic waste.
Select Fuel’s aim is to address two environmental problems at once, collecting old petrol-based polycarbonate waste material and turning it into a fuel compatible with existing ICEs, creating a more sustainable, renewable fuel that works with the existing ICE vehicle fleet. It’s not entirely clear how Bertone plans to supply it to GB110 owners, but it won’t need to launch a large scale operation since only 33 GB110 cars are planned.
It doesn’t look like the plastic fuel will hold the GB110 back in the slightest. The car will develop 1,100 Nm (811 lb-ft) of torque to match its max horsepower, sprinting from 0 to 62 mph (100 km/h) in under 2.8 seconds and topping out somewhere north of 236 mph (380 km/h).
This week’s first look announcement does not include launch timeframe or pricing information, but it definitely makes us want to learn more about the new Bertone and its plans. Stay tuned.
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