CARMAKING NOT LIMITED TO BIG PLAYERS

Slovak sports car changes engine supplier

K-1 ENGINEERING, a producer of small sports cars in Devínska Nová Ves near Bratislava, has changed its supplier of engines from an American company to a German one, the Hospodárske Noviny economic daily wrote.

K-1 ENGINEERING, a producer of small sports cars in Devínska Nová Ves near Bratislava, has changed its supplier of engines from an American company to a German one, the Hospodárske Noviny economic daily wrote.

"After terminating our cooperation with Ford, a new contract with BMW will come into force," said Dick Kvetňanský, manager of K-1 Engineering. "We will attach an N54 engine, an in-line three-litre six-cylinder with two cascade turbos and a Getrag six-speed manual transmission, giving it a basic capacity of 316 horsepower and 420 Newton-metres. The BMW engine can achieve this by 1,300 revs, slightly over the no-load speed."

Kvetňanský and Invest Holding originally produced the Attack Roadster model as a kit car and put it into serial production three years ago. Until now it has been powered by a serial Ford engine with 221 horsepower that after adjustments can reach 242 horsepower, the Hospodárske Noviny business daily wrote.

After disappointing results in 2007, the producer hopes to sell at least 70 cars this year. It also has orders for four racing versions of the Attack, which will be equipped with K-1 Engineering's 320 horsepower engine, which Kvetňanský personally used in a race last year. The Attack Roadster currently sells for €75,000 (Sk2.5 million) and will soon be offered in Slovakia as well.

The handmade Attack Roadster is controlled by an information system that automatically orders spare parts from a store, helps the marketing department monitor its development and enables individual evaluation.

All this began as the dream of two enthusiasts. Dick Kvetňanský and Juraj Mitro wanted to construct a sporty stock car. The cars created in their workshop used engines from a Honda Accord. They were given the name the K-1 Attack and were sent abroad in boxes to be assembled upon arrival.

So far, about 150 Attack Roadsters are on roads around the world. In the beginning, their production was directed mainly to the USA, but last year the Benelux states and Germany rose to the top of the export countries.

This year, K-1 Engineering would like to produce at least 20 cars with Ford and 50 more with the BMW engine, Kvetňanský said.

The company wants to take part in special car shows in Tokyo and Bahrain, he said.

Their new model, called the Attack F1, is another car the producer is making in cooperation with BMW.

"We haven't decided whether it will be equipped with a 10- or a 12-cylinder engine," Kvetňanský said.

The Attack F1 will be a three-seat sports car with the driver's seat in the middle, which is reminiscent of the Formula 1 race cars, and will be made completely from carbon fibres. It will be sold starting in spring 2009.

"When we get the production of the Attack F1 fully up and running, maybe we will sell the production of the Attack Roadster," Kvetňanský said.

Kvetňanský's biggest European competitors are the Yes Roadster and the Wiesmann Car, both from Germany.

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