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Gordon Murray reveals T50 V12 details

Details of high-revving Cosworth V12 revealed as beating heart of T50 supercar

24 Jul 2020

SUPERCAR newcomer Gordon Murray Automotive has revealed the full details of the savage Cosworth naturally aspirated V12 set to underpin the brand’s first model, the T50.


Detailed ahead of the supercar’s reveal on August 4, the 3.9-litre V12 is being touted as the world’s highest-revving, fastest responding, most power dense and lightest aspirated V12 road car engine.


The T50’s mid-mounted Cosworth powerplant will be capable of revving all the way to a manic 12,100rpm, producing 488kW at 11,500rpm with peak torque pegged at a more everyday 467Nm, albeit at 9000rpm.


With the T50 tipping the scales at just 980kg, the engine helps provide a power-to-weight ratio of 494kW per tonne, with the engine itself only weighing 178kg.


To achieve its low weight, the engine block is made from aluminium alloy, with a steel crankshaft and titanium connecting rods, valves and clutch housing.


When set in the most potent Vmax drive setting, the engine can liberate an extra 37kW from the integrated mild-hybrid 48-volt starter-generator, which also helps to lower emissions.


The V12 was developed from the ground up, and took inspiration from a number of engines including the 3.5-litre Honda V12 used in McLaren Formula One cars from the 1990s, the BMW S70/2 V12 from the legendary McLaren F1 and even the 3.3-litre V12 powering the iconic Ferrari 250 GTO.


Gordon Murray said his extensive experience in motorsport and engine development played a large role in creating the manic new Cosworth V12.


“Ultra-light components, intelligent packaging and a really fast engine response all come directly from my 20 years’ experience in Formula One,” he said.


“It also informs how everything is driven – the T.50 has no belts, it’s all gear-driven – a direct inheritance from the pinnacle of motorsport.”


With its 12,100rpm redline, the new V12 is now the highest-revving road car engine ever, beating Murray’s own Light Car Company ‘Rocket’ which managed a redline of 11,500rpm.


Responsiveness is also a hallmark of the new motor, with the T50 V12 able to rev from idle to 12,100rpm in just 0.3 seconds, meaning it is capable of up to 28,400 revs per second – for reference, an F1 engine is capable of around 10,000 per second.


A screaming redline and aspirated engine naturally lends itself to a sonorous engine note, with Murray borrowing the Direct Path Induction Sound system pioneered on the McLaren F1, which uses the cold-air ram induction intake sitting above the driver’s head and the varying thickness of the carbon-fibre roof to amplify engine sound into the cabin.


An emphasis was made on ensuring a low centre of gravity for the new engine, with the crankshaft sitting 85mm from the bottom of the engine – a 40mm improvement on the F1 and a critical factor for improving handling dynamics.


Opting for mechanical and driving purity, the V12 is mated to a six-speed close-ratio manual transmission developed by British company Xtrac, with its 80.5kg mass also indicative of the focus on weight saving.


The company is claiming the new gearbox will feature the ‘best gear-change in the world’, with an H-pattern shifter, short, narrow design and five close-ratio speeds with a sixth longer gear for cruising.


Cosworth managing director Bruce Wood was hopeful of the new V12 mill cementing a place in automotive history.


“The criteria and benchmarks set by Gordon for the T.50 engine comprised one of the toughest engine briefs we’ve ever taken on,” he said.


“It pushes the boundaries in every direction and it is a genuine thrill for everyone at Cosworth to be part of what will surely become as fabled a vehicle as Gordon’s McLaren F1 before it.


“The programme has taken Cosworth to new heights and, although only time will tell, it already feels like the GMA V12 has the potential to be one of the most iconic engines of all time.”


The T50 is set to be revealed in full on August 4.

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