The 1980s were a great time to be a supercar developer: everyone was flush with cash, tastes were dubious (at best) and it really wasn’t that difficult to make your mark. Of course, cars take a while to create and those that got started in the late 80s got a rude awekening as the 90s came about. Less money, recession, and a lot more competition. Such was the case of the 1991 Cizeta V16T, also known (originally) as the Cizeta-Moroder. Every inch the supercar, capable of taking on just about everything and anything on the road, it was done in by its price and by the fact that the company had no track record to speak of. If you’re plopping down 400 big ones on a car and times are tough, who are you going to trust, Lamborghini or some unknown company? Exactly.
While most supercars of the time were happy with 12 cylinders, not so for the Cizeta V16T. As its name implies, it was powered by a cleverly-constructed 16 cylinder engine, made of two GM V8s, end-to-end in a single block. It produced about 540 horsepower and plenty of torque. Purists argue that it is not a true V16, but rather two V8s sharing a block. Ok. Interestingly, the engine was mounted longitudinally. Performance was as expected from a car developed by a bunch of ex-Lamborghini personnel: 0-60 mph in 4 seconds, and a top speed exceeding 200 mph.
It is often said that the Cizeta V16T was what the Lamborghini Diablo would have been had Chrysler not stuck its nose in there, but we’ll never know. Only 8 of this rarest of supercars were made during the original production run, until 1995.