Love supercars and superbikes? Now you can blend the two.
After the madness of Monterey Car Week, we wrongly believed that nothing could shock us anymore. We saw a McLaren based on a video game concept car, a roofless RUF with exceptionally quirky styling, a Koenigsegg with an automatic gearbox that can act as a traditional manual with a clutch, and a coachbuilt homage to endurance racing Aston Martins of old. As for today's topic of conversation, even if it were revealed in such illustrious company, you'd be hard-pressed to find an individual who would not be gobsmacked at the despicable bastardization that was presented at Salon Prive in the UK yesterday.
Billed as the world's first 'super-quad,' the Engler Automotive Desat claims 1,100 horsepower and a top speed of 217 mph. Are we the only ones who think this is a very bad idea?
If those headlights and taillights look awfully similar to those found on the Audi R8 supercar, it's because they are those very elements. But that's not all the Engler Desat shares with Audi's V10-powered supercar. According to the automaker, the Desat is powered by the same 5.2-liter engine found in the R8 and the Lamborghini Huracan. Details have not been fully released yet, but Engler's website has some wild numbers.
Without explaining how, the site says the V10 has been enhanced to the tune of 1,100 hp, allowing it to get from 0-62 mph in only 2.5 seconds. However, some of the individuals present at the pre-launch of the car noted that Engler seems to have abandoned its four-figure horsepower claim and is now declaring a figure of 620 hp. The website has several spelling errors, so we wonder if that's actually meant to be the same 602 hp as the R8 and Huracan Evo RWD (still bonkers for a quadricycle).
Whatever the performance, this monstrosity is sure to scare the sanity out of you. But it should, at least, be easy to park, right? Well, maybe not; the car measures 184 inches in length with a height of 37.4 inches. That makes it almost 10 inches longer than the R8, despite sharing the same wheelbase of 104.3 inches. As for weight, the claimed figure is 2,425 pounds, which is very light for a car but very heavy for a motorcycle or quadricycle of any sort.
According to Engler, "the Superquad is a ground-breaking machine that [...] delivers the tacticity and visceral involvement of a superbike with the raw speed and drama of a hypercar." This brings us neatly back to the insanity of the idea.
For the vast majority of superbikes, the top speed is limited to 186 mph, and there are a number of very good reasons for that. It doesn't matter how strong or heavy you think you are - at those sorts of speeds, it becomes very difficult to hang onto the bike. In addition, the frequency of the vibrations that you're fingers and palms experience over even the most minor of road imperfections can lead to numbness. Most importantly, a two-wheeled motorcycle can't safely change direction quickly at those sorts of speeds.
With four wheels on the ground, as is the case with the Engler creation, maneuvering the vehicle is surely a relatively easy feat to accomplish with great stability. But there's still no crash structure, rollover hoop, or protection of any kind besides your helmet.
At this stage, production and pricing details are a long way off, but even if you can afford it, we highly recommend you steer clear of what must surely be described as a deathtrap.