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The Motorsport Chassis and Suspension of the Audacious Apollo Intensa Emozione

The automotive industry is shifting to an all-electric era at a rapid pace, with carmakers introducing new EV models seemingly every month. Now and again, though, high-performance ICE enthusiasts are given something to cheer about by small manufacturers like Apollo. This boutique manufacturer builds the Intensa Emozione, a mind-blowing supercar powered by an old fashioned naturally-aspirated V12 that features a chassis inspired by the latest Le Mans race car prototypes.
Apollo Intensa Emozione 11 photos
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Although the name hints at Italian roots, Apollo is a German company that gave us the Gumpert Apollo fifteen years ago.

The Intensa Emozione (or IE, for short) was revealed in June 2018 and it has been developed alongside HWA AG, a tuning and racing team that is part of Mercedes-AMG and managed its DTM and Formula E teams.

The carmaker states that the design language used for the exterior is inspired by nature, insects, and marine animals, and the result is a stunning car that stands out from every angle.

Considering its German roots, Mercedes-AMG affiliation, and the fact that the Gumpert used an Audi engine, most people were surprised to learn that the IE is powered by a 780 hp (582 kW; 791 PS) Ferrari-derived V12 developed by Autotecnica Motori and HWA AG.

However, the groundbreaking monocoque chassis was designed and developed in Bavaria, with valuable input from the specialists at HWA AG. Its entire structure employs revolutionary, race car-inspired manufacturing techniques and is completely made from high-quality carbon fiber.

The use of this material offers unparalleled advantages in terms of weight saving, increased torsional rigidity, and makes for a safer structure that meets and partially exceeds FIA regulations for LMP2 racecars.

The entire fuel system is integrated into the monocoque, and just like the LMP2 racecars, it features a Kevlar safety cell and a built-in fire extinguishing system.

Also, the modular design allowed for the integration of a mono-cell rollover protection system into the base structure. This ensures optimum safety without the use of a roll cage that would have added extra weight.

Apart from the monocoque, the chassis incorporates front and rear subframes made from the same material. This design allows for a lighter, more rigid, compact, and aerodynamically efficient architecture.

The intelligent use of carbon fiber and innovative design techniques provide the Apollo Intensa Emozione with a complete chassis that only weighs 105 kg (231.5 lbs).

Inspired by Formula One, the suspension system features a double-wishbone with full pushrod and rocker arm layout on both the front and rear axles. It uses adjustable anti-roll bars, and the Bilstein adaptive dampers can be adjusted in three modes: Comfort, Sport, or Auto.

The engineers chose to use this type of damper for the versatility it offers, being capable of performing flawlessly at high speeds, on the world’s most demanding racetracks while also providing a comfortable ride through city streets.

An electro-hydraulic system with four air-jacks can raise the vehicle height by 50 mm (2 inches) at speeds of up to 30 kph (19 mph) to clear potholes and uneven road surfaces or provide easy access for pit-service operations.

When it comes to aerodynamics, the supercar generates a maximum downforce of 1,350 kg (2,976 lbs) at 299 kph (186 mph) and can accelerate from 0 to 97 kph (60 mph) in 2.7 seconds. The projected top speed of this monster is 335 kph (208 mph).

Although part of a dying breed, the Intensa Emozione is a marvel of modern engineering, but, unfortunately, Apollo is only producing ten units, all of which have been already sold.


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