Looking more like a stowaway from the money-soaked Geneva Motor Show than an Orange County skunkworks project, this is the Aria Group FXE. Debuting today at the LA Auto Show, the locally-built FXE is a midengined hybridized supercar with a surprising pedigree.
The sleek two-seater features a 6.2-liter V8 augmented by a front e-axle powered by a 10-kWh lithium ion battery. Total claimed system output? A tidy 1,150 horsepower and 1,316 pound-feet of torque.
Aria Group says that's enough motivation to catapult this carbon-composite-chassis'd sports car to 60 mph in 3.1 seconds, which if anything, sounds conservative given the FXE's abundance of power and 3,450-pound curb weight. It didn't expand on the car's other specifications.
If the name Aria Group or the car's angular flanks ring a distant bell, that's probably because the company introduced a simpler and less powerful version of this car at last year's LA Show. Dubbed simply "Fast Eddy," the earlier car shared many of the FXE's features, including similar headlamp openings, blistered fenders and large side air intakes.
The FXE moves the game on, however, with a much more aggressive hood and front fascia, side aero fences, a roof-mounted scoop and a prominent rear wing. There's also the small matter of electrification -- whereas Fast Eddy was powered solely by a Chevrolet-sourced 650-hp LT4 small-block V8 and weighed under 2,900 pounds, the FXE's electrification helps yield an additional 500 hp to counterbalance the added mass.
In recent years, we've seen plenty of attempts from largely unknown companies looking to make a splash in the supercar world. Most have fizzled, and Aria Group's plan to produce "no more than 400 units" of the FXE is nothing if not ambitious.
There may be good reason for optimism, however. It's that "surprising pedigree" mentioned earlier. Aria Group is the same firm that assembles the immaculate carbon-fiber bodies for. What's more, the company has been in business for over 20 years developing special projects for the auto, aerospace and movie industries. It's worked on things as diverse as the show car, the real-world Halo Warthog and even the Las Vegas Monorail.
Is there an appetite for an electrified, midengined American supercar? That may depend on price, which sadly has not yet been announced.