Gordon Murray T.33 Spider loses roof and auto transmission

Gordon Murray Automotive

Gordon Murray Automotive’s customers have voted with their feet and the T.33 Spider will only be available with three pedals and a manual transmission. Apparently just four people out of the 100 who ordered the T.33 Coupe opted for an automatic so the Spider will be stick-shift only.

The six-speed gearbox is made by motorsports specialist Xtrac and weighs just 181 pounds, making it the lightest transmission fitted to a supercar. It uses a multi-plate clutch and drives the rear wheels via a mechanical limited slip differential for ultimate driver feedback and control of power delivery from the T.33’s incredible Cosworth V-12 engine.

With two banks of six cylinders sitting at a 65-degree angle the 3.9-liter, normally-aspirated motor is fed fresh cool air through a ram air scoop, features four throttle bodies and two injectors per cylinder. Peak power is 617 hp at 10,250 rpm and it will rev beyond 11,000. Yes, Murray literally turned the dial up to 11.

Drivers of the T.33 Spider will be able to appreciate the sensational sound of the motor on full song even more with the car’s carbon fiber roof panels removed and the glass rear window dropped. Designed in parallel with the Coupe the Spider is actually unique from the A-pillar backwards. “From the very beginning I knew that one of the biggest challenges in designing the T.33 Spider would be keeping the purity, balance and overall beauty of the T.33,” says Murray. “That’s why I sketched both versions at the same time to make sure that the proportions would work.”

In place of the Coupe’s rear window the Spider has a flat deck with cooling louvres integrated into the engine cover, while the ram air intake sits atop bold buttresses. The design has been optimized to reduce both drag and buffeting when the cockpit is open and, like the Coupe, the T.33 Spider also benefits from a so-called Passive Boundary Layer Control system which makes use of ground effect to create downforce without drag through ingenious management of airflow.

The Spider is built on Murray’s iStream carbon monocoque and his obsession with weight saving means that the Spider tips the scales at 2443 pounds—only 40 lbs more than the Coupe. The driver-focused cockpit is essentially the same, with a combination of analogue and digital instrumentation, and tactile aluminum switchgear. Spider buyers get a body-colored rear bulkhead which brings the outside into the cabin.

Unadulterated driving is the name of the game, so the T.33 Spider is fitted with double wishbones all round, and the rear suspension is mounted directly to the transmission casing. Electro-hydraulic power steering is installed which uses an electric pump to provide assistance when required rather than sapping power from the engine. Carbon ceramic brakes with six-piston calipers at the front and four-piston units at the rear deliver exceptional stopping performance.

Just 100 examples of the T.33 Spider will be hand built at Murray’s new HQ in Windlesham, UK and every one will personalized to its owner’s wishes. Buyers of the $2.5 million supercar can be reassured that Murray has established global service centers in the UK, Japan, Abu Dhabi and the east and west coasts of the U.S.A. Additional service centers are located in Germany, Spain, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Hong Kong, Singapore, Taiwan, Australia, and six U.S. states.


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