It’s Slovenia’s first supercar, or, in other words, the Tushek Renovatio T500. It’s from a brand new company, it is not a totally ground-up design, yet costs, wait for it (drum roll), €300,000.
Quite a lot, yes? Yes. But give it a chance.
A spot of history. Actually, a lot of history, because too little might not be helpful. Aljosa Tušek used to race cars (euro tin tops) and when he stopped, he decided for a living he’d assemble and sell high-spec variants of a car (available in component form) called the K1 Attack.
So he bought one and set about it, before realising that, although he liked the look of it, the engine was too lazy and tall (a Ford V6 with the gearbox beneath it) and the (glassfibre) body was too heavy and imprecisely moulded.
Truth is, it wasn't the car he wanted to make. So, now, although it retains a tubular spaceframe chassis, more than 80 percent of it is different to the K1. It’s a lot longer, a bit wider and lower. Power comes from a 4.2-litre Audi RS4 motor and drives the rear wheels via an S5’s 6-spd manual gearbox. The body is carbonfibre.
Slovenia doesn’t have a rich heritage in supercar manufacture, it’s true: but Ferrari’s composite body panels are made here, as are Ducati panels and Porsche’s ceramic brakes, while it’s home to Akrapovic exhausts.
So there are experts in carbonfibre, ceramic composites and titanium. Tušek works with them all. The Renovatio makes a modest (by supercar standards) 444bhp, but here's the thing: dry, it weighs only 1090kg. Tušek thinks most supercars aren’t particularly suited to track use because they're too heavy. I'm inclined to agree. And the Renovatio is pitched at the track-oriented end of the scale, which makes it additionally unusual in supercar circles.
Anything else unusual? Yes. A refreshing lack of over-ambition on the part of the people who build it. They're modest; the claimed top speed starts with a one; the 0-62mph time is a believable (if it gets there in first gear) 3.7sec. Tušek isn’t exactly out to shake-up the establishment, either. He only plans to build 30 (a successor is already on paper, looks good, and would satisfy his output for the next ten years), and is pleasingly open about progress so far: two early prototypes were made and sold.
This is the third (it isn’t for sale) and, as I write, there are another two paid-up orders. Tušek wants to make another five this year. Those cars will get an R8 rather than RS4 motor because it’s dry sumped, while there’s also a stylish coupe roof option. It takes a couple of minutes to manually remove the roof you see in some of these pictures. It’s a less slick operation than in all of its rivals, but the thinking is that the weight saving is worth it.