NAIAS 2012: Falcon Motor Sports introduces production version of F7 “supercar”

  • 13-Jan-2012 08:05 EST
aei-falconf7.jpg

The Falcon F7 shown is the already-sold first production car.

The Falcon F7 is a concept/prototype car no more. It made its production debut at the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit Jan. 10.

The F6 is clearly a “supercar,” and with a version carrying a $225,000 “sticker” is priced for that market.

The appearance may be reminiscent of a 1980s' Lamborghini or Ferrari, but the technology is what you’d expect today. The manufacturer, Falcon Motor Sports of Holly, MI had been a producer of aftermarket body kits for the Dodge Viper, and it exhibited a prototype of the F7 at the 2010 NAIAS. It plans to build 10 cars in a Series 1 this year in a price range of $190,000-250,000, eventually up to 100 cars/year.

The body is all carbon fiber on a TIG-welded aluminum chassis, and weighs 2785 lb (1263 kg). Carbon fiber also is used for a structural tunnel and to reinforce the floor pan and firewall.

The mid-engine powertrain of the rear-drive car is a version of the hand-assembled General Motors LS7 7.0-L V8, fitted with a carbon-fiber intake manifold and rated at 620 hp (462 kw) and 585 lb·ft (793 N·m). The transaxle is a six-speed manual supplied by Ricardo, and is based on the design that Ricardo did for the Ford GT.

Although track testing is not complete, Falcon projects top speed to be 190-200 mph (306-322 km/h), a 0-60 mph (0-97 km/h) time of 3.3-3.6 s, and a quarter-mile time of 10.9 s. The 60-0 mph braking distance is claimed to be below 100 ft (30.5 m), thanks to a braking system with 15-in (381-mm) vented/slotted rotors with six-piston calipers in front, 14-in (356-mm) vented and slotted rotors with four-piston calipers in the rear.

The suspension, made with CNC (computer numerical control) machined billet aluminum, incorporates fully-adjustable coil-over shocks with external reservoirs. It is a modified version of a race car setup by Fran Hall, a kit car producer, whose Superlite Cars/Race Car Replicas of Clinton Township, MI also developed the chassis. The standard ride height is 5 in (127 mm) and there is an optional hydraulic front-end lift kit for curbs and speed bumps, which provides a temporary addition of 3 in (76 mm) of ground clearance. Lateral acceleration is 1.1-1.3 g maximum.

The rack-and-pinion steering is electrically-assisted.

The car is 174 in (4420 mm) long overall, 78 in (1981 mm) wide, and just 44 in (1118 mm) high. The interior is obviously commodious, and the company claims a driver 76 in (1930 mm) tall will fit comfortably. It has a Targa roof.

Although the basic specifications for the F7 Series 1 are firm, buyers (called “development partner/owners”) will be given the chance to do hands-on work to pick final states of chassis tuning, equipment choices, and refinements. The “basics,” however, (Bluetooth, Garman GPS, premium audio system, IPod docking station, keyless locking and ignition) and of course, power windows and air-conditioning, are standard, as is a Venzano leather interior.

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