ELEMENTAL – Ultima GTR

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Despite considerable renown in certain automotive circles, the Ultima GTR is relatively unknown to most. Taking the GTR to car shows or out for a Sunday cruise results in many puzzled looks and baffling guesses as to exactly what it is. But that unknown factor doesn’t stop people from gawking and, in fact, adds to it. Even just taking it out to the grocery store for milk, people reacting with waves, thumbs-ups and cameras out of car windows is the norm. Be it Ferrari, Lamborghini or otherwise next to the Ultima, the Ultima is getting most of the attention. Out on the street juxtaposed to a sea of mundane, gray sedans and SUVs, the GTR looks more like a spaceship than a car. Like it doesn’t belong and shouldn’t be legally allowed on public streets. But then, it is more or less a street-legal race car and, sitting in either of its deep leather buckets, it feels like it.

The cabin is tight and loud, visibility is limited and the ride is harsh… and I’d complain if it wasn’t. The quick-release steering wheel, toggle switches and function-first Stack display further add to the track-ready aura that engulfs you and if there is any passion for speed in you at all, it calls to you. But it’s not without creature comforts. This particular car has a full stereo, carpeting and air conditioning, so it is actually fairly livable for such an extreme vehicle.

With about 600bhp and 500ft/lbs of torque feeding through a Porsche G50 transaxle and a pair of rubber steamrollers in a car that weighs right around a ton, it goes without saying that the performance is staggering. The carbed Motown 427 SBC brings the power fast and hard and with just a thin divider of metal, fiberglass and about six inches separating you from full ceramic coated headers feeding directly into a pair of some of the hardest working mufflers in the business. It’s a full body experience. But the Ultima is far from a drag car. With extensive on-track development and tuning and with unequal length a-arms, adjustable coilovers and massive AP Racing brakes on all four corners it is truly at home on road courses and amongst the very best street-legal track toys.

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