A-Z Supercars: Cizeta V16T

The extraordinary V16-engined Cizeta was the very embodiment of 1980s excess

When wealthy businessman Claudio Zampolli, whose day job was selling and servicing Italian exotica in LA, got together with music composer/producer car nut Giorgio Moroder and ex-Lamborghini styling god Marcello Gandini to show the folk at Maranello and Sant’Agata how it was done, there wasn’t much in the way of holding back. With the help of a group of ex-Lamborghini employees, they created a modest monster of a supercar called the Cizeta-Moroder V16T.

That the Cizeta had a 6.0-litre V16 engine was gobsmacking enough, but mounting it transversely made it one of the widest cars ever produced. The engine was actually two flat-plane V8s sharing a single block, the longitudinal transmission taking its input from the middle of the engine in a ‘T’ configuration. The motor was quite something, though, delivering its 560bhp at 8000rpm. Cizeta claimed 4.4sec to 60mph and a top speed of 204mph. And for anyone who’d ever wondered what 16 cylinders, four camshafts and 64 valves might sound like at full noise, the Cizeta provided the answer: simply awesome.

Subscribe to evo magazine

Subscribe today to have every issue of evo delivered straight to you. You'll SAVE 39% on the shop price, and get evo for its original cover price for a whole year!

Why did it look so much like a Diablo? Because it was pretty much Gandini’s original design for that car. And it’s how the Diablo would have looked had it not been ‘modified’ by another design team when Chrysler took control of Lamborghini in 1987. More than a little miffed by this, Marcello saw an opportunity to give the world his Diablo ‘director’s cut’ with the Cizeta.

Although nine Cizetas were made, the company’s viability looked increasingly suspect, all the more so when a frustrated Moroder and his money walked away, causing production to cease in 1995. Zampolli revived the design with a roadster in 2005 and promised more would follow. Little has been heard since.

Specifications

Years made 1991-1995 Engine V16, 5995cc Max power 560bhp @ 8000rpm Torque 469lb ft @ 6000rpm 0-60mph 4.4sec Max speed 204mph Price c£200,000 new, c£200-300,000 today

Most Popular

Visit/bmw/1-series/203095/bmw-128ti-revealed-as-direct-hot-hatch-rival-to-vw-golf-gti
BMW 1 Series

BMW 128ti revealed as direct hot hatch rival to VW Golf GTI

BMW has revealed a simplified front-wheel drive hot 1-series called 128ti that will sit below the M135i performance flagship
16 Sep 2020
Visit/nissan/370z/201879/nissan-z-proto-revealed-v6-twin-turbo-six-speed-manual-and-a-catch
Nissan 370Z

Nissan Z Proto revealed – V6 twin-turbo, six-speed manual, and a catch

It’s the Nissan sports car we’ve been waiting 11 years for, but don’t hold your breath for it in the UK
16 Sep 2020
Visit/mclaren/203105/five-mclaren-senna-gtr-lms-in-le-mans-liveries-revealed
McLaren Senna

Five McLaren Senna GTR LMs in Le Mans liveries revealed

Celebrating 25 years since McLaren’s domination of the 1995 Le Mans 24hr with the F1 GTR
18 Sep 2020
Visit/advice/19675/used-car-deals-of-the-week
Features

Used car deals of the week

We’ve perused the used car pages so you don’t have to. Here’s what caught evo’s fancy this week
16 Sep 2020