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Thursday, December 17, 2015

This HyperSUV Concept Wields the Heart of a Bugatti


Copyright © 2015 Bold Ride LLC.

15 years ago, if you told me that luxury SUVs would rival Italian supercars in power and performance, I would have told you to dream on. But with standouts like the 550-horsepower Range Rover Sport SVR, 570-hp Porsche Cayenne Turbo S, and the 187-mph Bentley Bentayga, it appears the breed is well and truly here. 
And if one Italian design house has any say in it, there’s about to be another on the way in the future. Meet the Ramusa “hyperSUV” concept car.

Ramusa, which means “lizard” in the Piedmontese dialect, has been created by Turin’s CAMAL design studio, and it melds sports car DNA with all-terrain SUV capability, as can be seen by its crossover appearance. The hyperSUV is said to have been developed on behalf of a client who hopes to build a limited series in the future. And we can think of one good reason why they should.


Deep within the Ramusa’s rear haunches lies the 3.5-liter, 60-valve, quad-turbocharged V12 engine from the sensational Bugatti EB110 supercar, predecessor to the rarified Veyron. It puts its power to the rear wheels through a six-speed manual gearbox, and with the help of an electric motor that drives the front wheels, over 800 horsepower can be sent to terra firma. A hyperSUV indeed.

CAMAL says the Ramusa also borrows chassis components from the Bugatti, however the car’s body design is clearly not shared. The Ramusa concept is said to stand 14 feet long, 6.6 feet wide, 4.3 feet high, and matches its low-slung sports car body with pumped-up SUV wheel arches and just under a foot of ground clearance.

Alexander Camorali, founder of CAMAL, began his career working for the legendary Bertone design center. With the Ramusa, he pays tribute to his days at the late-great studio.


Is it polarizing? Surely—not everyone is on board with the hyperSUV movement yet. But with some wealthy backers, perhaps a few of these EB110-based cars could rev to life in the coming years.

That said, using the powerplant from a ‘90s supercar (one produced in relatively small numbers) doesn’t bode well for its production readiness. If the Ramusa does come into existence, expect it to look elsewhere for its mechanical bits.