DeltaWing designers pitch wedge-shaped street car

DeltaWing's rendering of a street car

DeltaWing Technologies Inc., the Atlanta-area developer of the DeltaWing race car, wants to license its unusual wedge-shaped design to automakers as a template for a lightweight, efficient production car.

Last week the company, owned by entrepreneur and racing mogul Don Panoz, released the first computer rendering of what a street car could look like.

It shows a pointy-nosed car starkly different from anything sold today. But Delta-Wing -- which has sued Nissan in Georgia court over similarities to the automaker's ZEOD RC race car and BladeGlider concept street car -- insists the design works.

"We are competing at the highest levels of road racing with half the weight, half the horsepower and nearly half of the fuel consumption," Panoz said in a statement.

"We believe we can deliver similar results on the street without compromising safety, comfort and performance."

Panoz: Unusual design can work.

DeltaWing envisions a four-seater with a small four-cylinder engine capable of 85 to 110 hp. The performance goal is a 0 to 60 mph time of six seconds, while getting 70 mpg.

DeltaWing President Al Speyer told Automotive News in April: "For the DeltaWing platform to have the impact it could have in the marketplace, particularly on fuel economy, we need the sales and distribution channel that an existing OEM has."

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