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A tribute to...... the Porsche 550


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French company Vintech will show this classy P550 Tribute coupe at the 2012 Pebble Beach concours this week. No prizes for guessing that it's inspired by Porsche's pert 550.

The P550 Tribute is a carbon-bodied two-seater due to be shown at the The Quail: A Motorsports Gathering on 17 August 2012.

[h=2]What else do we know about the Vintech P550 Tribute?[/h] It has a 3.0-litre four-cylinder boxer engine, reputed to put out around 270b hp. Drive is sent to the rear wheels through a five-speed manual transmission, for that authentic 1950s sports car effect.

No performance figures have been published yet, but Vintech suggests the P550 weighs under 1000 kg for electric performance. And check out the design sketch above: it has gullwing doors, enabled by the super-stiff carbonfibre structure.

[h=2]Who is behind Vintech?[/h] Group D3 is a French company set up in 2008 specialising in 3D modelling, lightweight materials and design in the automotive sector.

Its shareholders have a soft spot for the 1953 Porsche 550, apparently, and the company says they wanted to 'pay tribute to this vehicle through a coherent stylistic reinterpretation, realised with the best materials and the best technology of the 21st century.

'Obviously, we did not intend to simply fabricate a replica of the original Porsche 550 coupe design. What we wanted to do was to keep as much of the character of the original vehicle while accepting to make the indispensable compromises in order to fabricate a completely functional vehicle that could be used according to more modern standards.'

[h=2]When can we buy the Vintech P50 Tribute?[/h] No word yet on whether this car has a low-volume production future or not. It may look gorgeous, but sadly beauty has little to do with a niche manufacturer's business intent.




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