|Body and chassis|
|Body style||2-door coupe|
|Engine||6.0 L V8|
|Wheelbase||103.0 in (2,616 mm)|
|Length||172.0 in (4,369 mm)|
|Width||76.0 in (1,930 mm)|
|Height||42.5 in (1,080 mm)|
|Curb weight||3,320 lb (1,506 kg)|
The Vector W8 is an American supercar produced from 1990 to 1993. It was manufactured by Vector Motors, and was designed by Gerald Wiegert and David Kostka. The company utilized the newest and most advanced aerospace materials in building the W8s, which they said justified applying to the car the term "Aeromotive Engineering." Just 19 W8s were produced (17 customer cars and two pre-production cars, the prototype W2, and two prototype Avtech AWX3 and AWX3R with a mock up of the 7.0 liter DOHC TT engine evolution). A total of 22 automobiles were produced by Vector Aeromotive over the life of the company. The car originally sold for $448,000 new, however on today's used market, they are available from $389,000 to well over $1.4 million depending on the condition of the car.
The W8 was essentially an upgrade of the same company's earlier prototype, the Vector W2. The Semi-Aluminum Monocoque chassis was epoxy bonded and riveted with an aluminum honeycomb floor pan, and 5,000 aircraft specification rivets were used in the car's assembly. Everything on the Vector was designed to last the life of the owner, assuming reasonable maintenance. The body was made largely of lightweight carbon fiber and kevlar, known for its strength, and lightness. The cars level of fit and finish was well beyond that of its competitors. The car was based around a Rodeck resleevable V8 racing engine, coupled to a custom three-speed transmission. The engine had twin turbochargers, and produced an advertised 650 bhp (485 kW) at 5700 rpm and 649 lb·ft (880 N·m) of torque on 8lbs of boost. Boost levels were driver adjustable between 8 and 14 lbs and during dyno testing at the factory the engines put out 1200hp at 14 lbs of boost.
The W8 had an estimated top speed of over 220 mph (354 km/h). However, in testing at the Bonneville Salt Flats, the W-2 reached 242 mph (389 km/h) with the less powerful Donovan block, as reported by Top Wheels magazine. This top speed was reached while still using the "high downforce" wing. Later aerodynamic testing further honed efficiency, bringing the car's drag coefficient (Cd.) down to just .32 prior to Department of Transportation crash testing in Ann Arbor, MI. The W8 design included subtle changes to the body during the production run, so that the initial car off the line looked slightly different from the last. These include the elimination of some gills, a lower front fascia and air splitter, revised rear wing, mirror intakes, and front grill. After the top speed testing was completed, no more Vector W8s were fitted with a removable glass roof, due to buffeting that occurred at those extreme speeds.
Vector intended to follow the W8 with the AWX-3 and AWX-3R. These designations stood for Avtech Wiegert Experimental, 3rd generation, the R standing for Roadster. Unfortunately series production never got off the ground. Production of the W8 ended in 1993, when the company was subject to a hostile takeover by Megatech, but Wiegert won back the design copyrights, equipment, and remaining unsold cars. In 1995, following the hostile takeover, the new parent company Megatech LTD began production of their first car, the M12.
A red W8 can be seen driven across an empty lot in the early scenes of the 1993 movie Rising Sun.
- "Vector W8". Supercars.net Publishing. Retrieved January 7, 2009.
- "1992 W8 twinturbo". Vector Motors Corporation. Retrieved January 7, 2009.
- Wouter Melissen (July 25, 2005). "1990 - 1993 Vector W8 Twin Turbo". Ultimatecarpage.com. Retrieved January 7, 2009.
- "Vector Motors - Company". Vector Motors Corp. Retrieved January 7, 2009.