10 Groundbreaking Cars You've Probably Never Heard Of

Faralli & Mazzanti Antas

Photo: Mazzanti Automobili

Think you know cars? You still might not know the ones on this list, from automakers we’re not used to seeing here in the US.High-end marques like Mercedes-Benz, Audi, and Ferrari pioneer automotive trends and technology. Features developed for these vehicles trickle down to the auto sales of mass-market machines you’re more likely to have in your own driveway.

But the brands you’ve heard of are not the only ones on the cutting edge. Limited-production automakers execute unique concepts for a niche market.

When their groundbreaking technology proves practical, it also eventually finds its way into more common cars.

See if you can spot any potentially practical car features in this Top 10 list of vehicles so unique, even the best-read auto enthusiast may not have seen them all.

1. GTA Motor / Spano

2. Savage Rivale / Roadyacht GTS

3. Tushek / Renovatio T500

4. Mitsuoka / Orochi

5. Zenvo / ST1

The Zenvo ST1 is a supercar in every sense of the word. Completely built in Denmark, the striking design of the ST1 combines angular edges with shapely creases for an intensely aggressive look backed up by a 7-liter V8.

That engine utilizes a supercharger and a turbo to conjure up 1,104 hp., sending the car to 62 m.p.h. in 3 seconds. Top speed is electronically limited to 233 m.p.h. Remove that limiter, and the ST1 just might take you back in time.

I can't promise I'll be able to report on it personally, though, as only 15 examples of this carbon-composite animal are planned.

6. Dartz / Prombron

7. DC Design / Avanti

India has been making cars for as long as there have been combustion engines, but they've primarily been three-wheeled taxis and delivery trucks until now.

An Indian company called DC Design began its life building retrofit kits to create facsimiles of luxury cars like the Porsche Cayenne and Hummer H1. But with the Avanti, they've got a project uniquely their own.

Unlike some of the ultra-exclusive limited production vehicles on this list, DC is starting production of the Avanti at 200 units per year with hopes of increasing that to 2,000 as sales increase.

The first examples will leave DC's showrooms with a Ford turbo four-cylinder making 265 hp., but plans are in place to offer a V6 from Honda, modified to produce a much more substantial 500 hp.

It remains to be seen which performance cars it will be able to hang with in the real world, but it's always encouraging to see innovation make the transition to execution.

8. Faralli & Mazzanti / Antas

Italian automaker Faralli & Mazzanti takes customisation to a whole new level with the Antas coupe. From conception to construction, the buyer is an active participant in every aspect of the car's development.

Starting with a basic design, a client can sit in on the drawing of the vehicle's final shape as well as its interior appointments and powertrain.

Maserati engines powered the original F&M cars, but now virtually any engine and transmission the client is willing to pay for can be fitted.

During the 11-month construction process, the client is invited to visit the F&M villa in Tuscany to relax and observe the car being put together.

It goes without saying that any Antas coupe is an exceptionally unique vehicle. No two examples that leave the production facility are exactly the same.

Faralli & Mazzanti are working on a supercar that you've probably never heard of either: the Evantra. It will be slightly less customisable, but nearly as exclusive.

9. Rimac Automobili / Concept One

10. Automobiles Gillet / Vertigo

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