Home Cars 30 Obscure Supercars Many Car Fans Never Heard Of

30 Obscure Supercars Many Car Fans Never Heard Of

Vukasin Herbez December 26, 2018

The world of supercars has been under the spotlight of the automotive public for decades. Most people know everything about the current Lamborghinis, Ferraris or Bugattis. Legendary models like the Lamborghini Countach or Ferrari F40 have been on the walls of many teenagers’ bedrooms for decades, fueling the passion for all things car-related. However, the world of supercars is far bigger and more colorful than most enthusiasts think.

There are numerous semi-successful models, one-offs or total failures that have been lost in the car corridors of time. Some manufacturers produced their cars for a specific market, while others were killed by the recession or safety standards before they could become world famous. Most of those cars were produced by small, boutique-type manufacturers. But, there are also some big names on this list with models that weren’t that successful or well-known.

So, keep reading to dig deep into the obscure world of forgotten supercars. These models had all the right ingredients like design, power, and exclusivity. Yet, somehow they failed to spark interest from mainstream driving enthusiasts as well as car buyers. So, here are the 30 most interesting ones.

1. Venturi GT 400

You are excused if you don’t know about Venturi. They were a small French car company that was active in the ’90s. They used components from other car companies while producing their own bodies and chassis to build several beautiful, fast cars. They raced a lot and left their mark in the history of obscure supercars with the magnificent 400 GT from the mid-90s.

Visually similar to the Ferrari F40, the Venturi 400 GT also used a twin-turbocharged engine. But in the GT 400’s case, it was a 3.0-liter Peugeot V6. Although it pumped out 400 HP in street trim, in racing trim, it was capable of over 600 HP. With all that firepower, the 400 GT could accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in 4.6 seconds and go over 180 mph, which was faster than the Porsches or Ferraris of the day.

Unfortunately, cruel financial reality caught up with Venturi’s big ambitions, so they closed the company first in 1997, and then again in 2000. Venturi withdrew from racing before that and managed to produce less than 100 examples of the fantastic 400 GT which has since been lost in corridors of time.

2. Dome Zero

Dome Co. Ltd. was a small Japanese car company dedicated to producing expensive, road and race-worthy models. They started production in 1976 and continued until 1986. However, it is unclear how many cars they built.

They powered the Dome Zero with a 2.8-liter SOHC six-cylinder engine that produced 147 HP. And even though that doesn’t sound much, because the car was extremely light, the performance was respectable. This car would remain obscure, but its appearance in the Gran Turismo game series cast some light on this interesting project.

3. Panther 6

Most people consider this strange car a supercar. That’s due to its power, price and unusual technical solutions like having six wheels instead of four. The Panther 6 is roadster-powered by a monstrous 8.2-liter V8 engine they sourced from the Cadillac Eldorado. They positioned the enormous engine behind the cabin to power the rear wheels while the four wheels in the front managed the steering.

To achieve a proper ride height and save space in the front where they have a double suspension, the designers installed smaller wheels instead of the much bigger ones on the back. They wanted the Panther 6 to be an over-the-top luxury supercar convertible, so it has a leather interior and climate control.

Also, it comes with power windows and doors, and even a TV and phone. The designers claim the Panther 6 can reach 200 mph top speeds. However, the automobile experts were always suspicious of that since Panther never allowed any independent testing. And, they only built two cars of them.

4. Ascari KZ1

Back in the early 2000s, Ascari was on the verge of becoming the next big thing in the supercar segment. Unfortunately, that didn’t materialize. So, all that is left of this interesting venture is the KZ 1 they presented in 2004 featuring cool styling. Also, They used high-quality construction and added a carbon fiber tub.

The KZ1 is powered by an S62 V8 engine from the E39 BMW M5, which is good for over 400 HP. Since the KZ 1 was light and balanced, the performance was impressive. In fact, 0 to 60 is possible in just 4.0 seconds, while top speed is 200 mph. The specifications and features in popular magazines added to the hype.

But when they announced the pricing, the KZ 1 hit a brick wall. In fact, Ascari priced this car at a hefty $400,000. And that was more than the comparable Ferrari or Porsche, which sealed the demise of the KZ 1.

5. Lotec Sirius

The Sirius is one of the most obscure European supercars the Lotec Company offered in the early 2000s. The prototype caused much attention when they first presented it in 2001. But, ever since then, the news about this crazy supercar has been scarce. Some people say they only built two of them, while others say the Sirius never progressed beyond the prototype stage.

However, the Sirius is still one of the most powerful and interesting machines out there. Its heart is a twin-turbo Mercedes-derived V12 engine that develops around 1,300 HP. With a five-speed manual transmission and weighing just 2,800 pounds, the Sirius is unbelievably fast. In fact, a 0 to 60 mph sprint takes less than 3.7 seconds and the top speed is a heart-stopping 285 mph.

6. AXIAM Mega Track

AXIAM, a French company, built the Mega Track in the mid-90s. Also, the Mega Track was the first and only off-road supercar ever built. You might ask how it is possible to have a supercar capable of going off-road. But AXIAM managed to produce a vehicle with an adjustable suspension.

And that meant drivers could transform it from a regular sports car to an SUV in just a matter of seconds. This complicated system allowed for eight to 13 inches of ride height. And, in just one moment, the Mega Track could become a true off-road beast.

Behind the driver is a massive 6.0-liter V12 engine from Mercedes-Benz. It produces a whopping 400 HP to power all four wheels. The concept had its drawbacks, though. In fact, the Mega Track is a heavy and big car. It weighs over two tons and is over 16 feet long, which is more than the Mercedes S-Class.

7. Bristol Fighter

Bristol Cars are one of the craziest companies in the world, not just for their strange models, but for their business policy. The company was barely making any money for decades, operating only one showroom. They sold only one or two cars per year and refused to modernize their lineup for decades. However, they somehow managed to survive. In 2004, Bristol introduced a new model with uncompromised performance and a fresh design.

And that is how the Bristol Fighter was born. They custom-made the chassis with a special body featuring Gullwing doors and a long hood. Interestingly, the design of the Fighter has no resemblance to other Bristol cars. Yet it carries the tradition of using Chrysler engines with an 8.0-liter V10 from a Dodge Viper they rated at 525 HP.

8. Isdera Imperator 108i

Isdera is a small and ultra-exclusive manufacturer of supercars in Germany. Eberhard Schultz, an ex-Mercedes engineer, founded it in 1969. Over the years, Isdera produced only a few models, all of which used many Mercedes parts, engines and components. Also, the company became infamous for using an exclusive production approach.

They presented the Imperator 108i in 1984. It remained in production until 1993, during which time they built 30 of them. The car used space frame construction with a plastic body and Gullwing doors, a timeless and popular supercar detail. Behind the driver is a Mercedes V8 engine with 5.0 liters of displacement.

9. TVR Speed 12

The British sports car company TVR was famous for producing a series of capable coupes and power roadsters, but never a proper supercar. However, in the late ‘90s, they decided to unveil the ultimate version of their popular Cerebra coupe they called the Speed 12.

The Speed 12 was a brutal and extremely powerful supercar, making it practically a race car for the street. It had a 7.7-liter V12 engine delivering around 1,000 HP but they never revealed the exact number. TVR designed the car primarily for racing. But, due to the change of rules, its racing career was short and unsuccessful.

10. Mitsuoka Orochi

One of the world’s most obscure supercars comes from Japan in the form of the Mitsuoka Orochi. It’s a groovy-looking two-seater with Lambo doors and a controversial design. The Mitsuoka Company was infamous for building resto moded cars based on regular models. But in 2006, they decided to enter the supercar market with the highly-exclusive Orochi.

In fact, they named it after a mythical Japanese dragon with eight heads, which influenced the design of the car. They built the Orochi on a Honda NSX platform but powered it with a Toyota 3.3-liter V6 engine producing 240 HP. That may not sound impressive, but the Orochi is light and nimble, so the performance is satisfying, to say the least. They never intended to sell the Orochi outside of Japan or some selected Asian markets, especially not in the U.S.

11. Lister Storm

Most people know the Lister Company as a racing outfit. They have prepared racing cars for a number of mainstream manufacturers including Jaguar, Maserati and Chevrolet. But in the mid-’90s, Lister decided to make their own supercar using a highly-tuned Jaguar V12 engine.

They called their new model the Storm and it featured a V12 engine producing 550 HP. The engine displaced 7.0 liters and was from a Le Mans racer. Lister made their own body featuring a wide track to accommodate its wide tires. Also, it came with lots of scoops and spoilers for better cooling and aerodynamics.

At the same time, Lister offered the Storm as a passenger car at almost $450,000 and as a racing version for private teams. However, despite producing some brutal power with 4.0 seconds to 60 mph and over 210 mph, only four customers ever ordered it.

12. Daur Porsche 962

If you ever wondered what it would be like to drive a Le Mans racing car, here is your answer. It is the crazy Daur 962 Le Mans. This car is the ultimate supercar they ever built. In fact, it’s so extreme and fast, it can put most of the latest, fastest supercars to shame. And that is despite the fact it is over 20 years old. In fact, the German company, Daur, built the 962 from 1993 to 1997.

This supercar is basically a race car with some trunk space and a license plate. Best of all, the Daur 962 produces 750 HP from its 3.0-liter turbocharged flat-six engine. The performance figures were also crazy. The 0 to 60 mph acceleration time is a neck-breaking 2.8-seconds with top speeds of 251 mph. But, the problem with the 962 is that it’s too much for most drivers.

13. Iso Grifo 90

The legendary Iso Grifo from the ‘60s and early ‘70s left an everlasting mark on the industry. So, in 1990, Pietro Rivolta, the son of the founder, presented the Grifo 90 concept. They built it on a Corvette C4 chassis with a special new body designed by the renowned stylist, Marcello Gandini. Unfortunately, financial problems forced the cancelation of the project, so the Grifo 90 was forgotten.

This is a big shame since the Grifo 90 used a Corvette C4 ZR1 running gear and chassis. And that meant it had 405 horses under the hood to deliver some brutal performance numbers. The Iso Grifo body was even a bit lighter than the Corvette, which improved the car’s top speed.

14. Monteverdi Hai 450 SS

Monteverdi was a Swiss boutique car manufacturer that produced the Hai 450 SS supercar. When they presented it in 1970, it featured a fully new chassis and body. Also, it had the famous Hemi 426 V8 engine in the back.

Monteverdi wanted the most powerful engine Mopar had to offer and in 1970, that was the mighty Hemi. They named the car the “Hai,” which is a German word for shark.

15. Cizeta-Moroder V16T

When Cizeta-Moroder first introduced the V16T in 1988, it had the potential to become the next big thing in the world of supercars. The car had it all, a celebrity endorsement, an Italian background, famous constructors, an exotic name, and the latest technology. The main feature of this obscure beast was its monstrous V16 engine.

It consisted of two flat-plane crank V8 units mounted transversely behind the cabin. The V16 engine had six liters of displacement and delivered 560 HP, which was a fantastic number for the late ’80s. The performance was equally impressive with a 0 to 60 mph acceleration time of just four seconds and a top speed of over 200 mph.

Even today, those numbers draw attention from the supercar crowd. The base list price was close to $300,000. However, they stopped the production at just 20 cars, which is why they are a rare sight today.

16. Alfa Romeo 33 Stradale

Despite the fact it is now irrelevant in the supercar class, in the late ‘60s, Alfa produced one of the most interesting supercars they ever built, the Tipo 33 Stradale. It was not only the most expensive production car, but it was also the most exclusive. Powered by a screaming race-bred V8, Alfa sold only around 15 Stradales. The 33 Stradale looks gorgeous but it’s production and public appearance were so limited, people have forgotten about this car.

17. Arash AF10

The small British company, Arash, made news with several supercar prototypes. But there was one that was closest to full-scale production, and that was the AF10. They presented it in 2009, featuring a Chevrolet V8 pumping out a head-spinning 500 HP.

However, in recent years, they revised the car, giving it a new hybrid powertrain with a claimed power output of 2,080 HP. This insane number raised the eyebrows of the supercar public. But sadly, the company hasn’t said anything since that announcement.

18. Kodiak F1

Although Kodiak only produced only one example, the Kodiak F1 is not a kit car. A German supercar, this is a typical machine from the ‘80s with a wedge-shaped design. It utilizes a rear-mounted V8 engine from a Corvette or Mercedes to deliver a convincing performance.

Unfortunately, despite the fact they thoroughly engineered it, giving it plenty of power, the Kodiak F1 was doomed because of its price. It cost over $100,000 at a time when a Ferrari cost half of that.

19. Gigliato Aerosa

Entering the car world in 1997, the Aerosa is an interesting supercar they produced in a joint venture between the Gigliato Design Company and Lamborghini. The Lamborghini did the engineering work and fabrication of the initial prototype. Gigliato completed the design and aesthetics, obviously.

They sourced the power from a 4.6-liter Mustang V8 that produces approximately 300 HP. But even though the proposed price wasn’t high, and the car had respectable figures, the project never advanced beyond the prototype/one-off phase.

20. Laraki Fulgura

This interesting model was on the verge of making it big in the early 2000s as the first supercar from a company in Africa. The Fulgura was an advanced project that used a Lamborghini Diablo platform and a 6.0-liter V12 engine.

However, Laraki thoroughly re-engineered the car by installing numerous unique details and special bodywork. Although the company announced plans for building nine examples and moving on to the next model they call the Epitome, it is unclear how many they built.

21. Tushek Renovatio T500

Slovenia is not a country you would normally associate with supercars, right? But, this small European country has a legitimate supercar company they call Tushek with its Renovatio T500 model. Tushek presented the T500 in 2012.

They loosely based the T500 on the Audi R8, sharing its 4.2-liter V8 engine. Interestingly, they custom-built most of the car, designing it to achieve better numbers and higher top speeds. And although they’ve offered the T500 for sale, building a number of them, they are still not available yet.

22. Spectre R42

In the early ‘90s, GT Developments, a British company, decided to move from their Ford GT 40 replica business and enter the supercar game. They based their design, which they called the R42 on the GT 40 space frame chassis using a modern Ford V8 engine.

The design was elegant and the interior featured more appointments than a regular GT 40 replica model. They unveiled the car in 1993, but the market never showed much interest. That was due to the car’s obscure background. Also, the supercar market in the early ‘90s was suffering through a recession.

23. Jiotto Caspita

Behind this strange name lies an interesting supercar story from Japan. The car was practically a race car for the road. In fact, it used an ex-Formula One flat-twelve engine with 577 HP. The rest of the drivetrain was equally extreme.

The Caspita delivered a brutal performance especially by the standards of the late ‘80s when they first presented it. However, due to its technical complexity, extreme price and virtually no street usability, the Caspita was not a favorite with wealthy customers. Soon, Jiotto discontinued it.

24. MCA Centenaire

The Automobile Club of Monaco is a powerful institution in the car world. So, to celebrate its 100th anniversary, the club decided to build a supercar. They named it the Centenaire, unveiling it in 1990.

They produced the Centenaire until 1992, during which time they only made five of them. The power comes from a Lamborghini V12 engine. However, later versions had a Mercedes 6.0-liter V12 that AMG tuned.

25. Lykan Hypersport

This is the first Arab supercar at the company’s headquarters in Lebanon. And as such, it is exclusive and expensive as well as a bit over the top. For example, Lykan built the headlights out of 240 15-karat diamonds.

It has a 3.8-liter flat-six engine that produces 780 HP to deliver an equally impressive performance. The price is a whopping $3.4 million. But it looks like car buyers are hard to come by despite its interesting design and all the hype.

26. Mosler MT900

The guy behind this car is constructor and entrepreneur, Warren Mosler. He is already famous for being the man behind the strange yet capable Consulier GTP. But his latest creation that he calls the Mosler MT900 is even more successful. And arguably, it’s a better-looking supercar. In 2001, Mosler presented the MT900 as the product of a long development process.

Their goal was to produce a car as light and as powerful as possible. And the result was a car that weighs just 2,500 pounds, which is less than any of their competitors. The MT900 gets its power from a 5.7-liter V8 that pumps out 350 HP. Or, you can get a 7.0-liter V8 that produces 435 HP in the MT900 S version.

27. Factory Five Racing GTM

Factory Five Racing is best known for its Shelby Cobra kits which are high-quality reproductions they do with enthusiast love. However, in 2007, the company made a move to the supercar market with the GTM. This is a modern car with a Kevlar body and aluminum chassis powered by a Corvette V8 engine.

Also, it comes with lots of components like a drivetrain and suspension they derived from the Corvette, making it relatively affordable, yet easy to work on and maintain. Due to its lightness and power, the GTM is fast with 0 to 60 mph times of around three seconds and a top speed of over 180 mph.

28. Devon GTX

Devon conceived this car to be the ultimate American sports car using a Dodge Viper RT10 base and engine with numerous modifications. Also, they upgrade the power to 650 HP. The GTX used the same six-speed manual with improved performance and top speed. It even broke a few track records during testing, but they never officially confirmed that.

Unfortunately, the economic downturn and recession of 2009 and 2010 hit the car industry especially hard, which caused big problems among car makers. So, Chrysler decided to kill the Viper project and discontinue the production of its platforms and engines. And that had a devasting effect on Devon’s production of the GTX.

229. Covini C6W

The wild-looking Covini C6W is an Italian super sports car that features twin front axles and a rear-mounted V8 engine. The four front wheels are for turning and braking, while the engine powers the rear wheels.

The C6W comes with a 4.2-liter V8 engine that delivers 440 HP by Audi. The exact performance figures are not exact, but they should be similar to current supercars. And that is because the Covini is light 2,645 pounds due to its space frame chassis and carbon fiber body. They introduced the production version in 2004. Although the car is currently in production, it is unclear how many of them they have made.

30. Argyll GT

Behind this strange name lies the Scottish-built supercar from the late ‘70s. Interestingly, this car was a compilation of different parts from different cars. In fact, it had a Renault 30 V6 engine and a Triumph 2500 suspension and axles.

Despite the initial interest from many customers and the promise of a turbocharged version, the company folded. And although the exact numbers of cars they produced remain unknown, it is definitely low.

These are the top 30 ultra rare and obscure supercars most people never heard of, but you’re not one of them. Which was your favorite of them all? If you can afford one of these, you’ll leave them in the dust at every stoplight.

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