ARES DESIGN UNVEILED SIX NEW CARS

Official opening of the ARES Design Technical Centre in Modena sees release of first six cars from the automotive atelier’s new global home

  • Dany Bahar and fellow shareholders open ARES Design’s brand new facility with factory tours, VIP dinner and first drive experiences of its limited-edition cars
  • ARES Design Coupe for the Bentley Mulsanne, Corvette Stingray, Land Rover Defender variants, Porsche 964 Targa and X-Raid take to the Modenese roads
  • VIP opening event draws 200 global guests including media, clients, prospects, shareholders and other VIPs

After just three full years of trading, ARES Design has taken ownership and developed a bespoke facility in Modena to design, develop, produce and handover coach-built limited-edition cars for clients from around the world.

The first six cars announced in this significant growth phase for ARES were presented to groups of global media, investors, clients and other friends of ARES. And the Modenese roads reverberated to the sounds of supercharged off-roaders, classic supercars with modern powertrains and the unmistakable resonance of a luxury GT.

The first six cars released in ARES’s fourth year of trading have all been developed, designed and constructed through a high-quality network of expert suppliers under instruction and guidance from ARES Design. But they all came ‘home’ in January for final quality sign-off and, where necessary, production completion at the ARES Design Technical Centre.

This new business model in the world of bespoke automotive production – where all projects begin and end at a dedicated global HQ – brings coach-building to a new level of quality, attention-to-detail, speed and cost-effectiveness.

Dany Bahar, CEO and co-founder of ARES Design, said: “Presenting our amazing new facility and 10 ARES projects either on the road, in-build or at concept phase and due for release later in 2018, was an incredibly proud moment for me and our shareholders. We believe we have found a sweet spot for bespoke automotive production: both in our location in Italy at the heart of the world of luxury cars, and in the market place for coach-building.

“Our technological advances and global headquarters allow for new levels of personalisation that deliver cars in weeks, not years at prices that respect our clients. We have seen great interest in our projects for 2018 and it was amazing to see our first cars take to the roads.”

The first six cars from the ARES Design Technical Centre:

ARES Design Coupe for the Bentley Mulsanne

Throughout the 20th century, one of the most popular marques for coach-builders was Bentley, so it’s perhaps fitting that ARES Design chose Bentley’s four-door Mulsanne as the basis for this spectacular recreation of a Bentley coupe. Using cutting-edge 21st-century techniques, the ARES Design Coupe for the Bentley Mulsanne is an exquisite coupe for the modern era, built in limited numbers for customers who appreciate Bentley style but would like a bespoke handcrafted creation.

ARES Corvette Stingray

Is there a more iconic American car than the Corvette Stingray? The first-generation Corvette was introduced in the 1950s but the historic Stingray moniker was unleashed the following decade. It is perhaps the most revered of all the Corvettes, and ARES Design’s brief was to thoroughly bring this 1964 Stingray up to date with modern performance, road manners and interior appointments as well as fully restoring the Corvette in the process. The finished product is the result of over 3500 hours of work and a stunning one-off creation that showcases the entire range of ARES Design’s capabilities.

ARES Design X-Raid

In a world that’s seemingly awash with huge 4x4s, there’s one example that’s stood the test of time better than most, Mercedes-Benz’s G-Class. It’s an indomitable machine equally at home on- or off-road and in its G63 form a devastating performer. ARES Design has used the G63 as the basis for its stunning reimagining of the luxury off-roader, the ARES Design X-Raid. It combines the undoubtable excellence of the G63 and its venerable twin-turbo 5.5-litre V8 with a unique take on the G-Class’s styling along with a luxurious complete revamp of the 4×4’s interior. With its stunning new lightweight suit and the performance and luxury to match, ARES Design’s X-Raid brings the G-Class thoroughly up to date with a level of style and sophistication that showcases the Modena-based company’s skill set to the full.

ARES Design Porsche 964 Targa

ARES Design has unleashed its reimagining of the classic Porsche 964. The car in question is a 1991 Carrera 2 Targa and while a casual glance might not give the game away, under its stunning bodywork and inside its cockpit it tells a different story – this is a 964 with a modern twist thanks to it incorporating finely honed components from a more contemporary Porsche, the 997 Carrera. ARES’s 964 Targa is a remarkable vehicle and a testament to the prowess and perseverance of its skilled technicians to overcome seemingly insurmountable problems to recreate a stunning car. All the good looks and undoubted style of the Porsche 964, yet packing all the latest technology from the 997.

ARES Design Land Rover Defender: supercharged and naturally-aspirated

When Land Rover launched its utilitarian 4×4 back in 1948 it can’t possibly have imagined that in 70 years’ time it would still have a dedicated following and an appeal that transcends social and geographical barriers. Everyone, it would seem, loves the Defender and the ARES Design Land Rover Defender is the ultimate expression of the 4×4, offering power, poise, luxury and panache in one dramatic package. It is a thoroughly re-engineered example of what can be achieved with a keen eye for design coupled with engineering excellence. ARES will build 53 examples of its Defender in a project in which it has teamed up with legendary Land Rover specialist JE Motor Works. The ARES Design Land Rover Defender is the finest example of the bespoke Defender off-roader on the road today and will come in both naturally aspirated and supercharged versions.

ARES Design Coupe for the Bentley Mulsanne

Throughout the 20th century Bentley was one of the most popular marques for coachbuilders so it’s
perhaps fitting that ARES Design chose Bentley’s four-door Mulsanne as the basis for this spectacular
recreation of a Bentley Coupe. Using cutting-edge 21st century techniques ARES has created an
exquisite Bentley Coupe for the modern era.

The ARES Coupe will be built in extremely limited numbers for customers who appreciate Bentley style
but would like a bespoke handcrafted creation. Carrying out such a comprehensive reimagining of the
classic Bentley is a formidable task but by creatively fusing modern and traditional methods ARES has
built a stunning and exclusive vehicle.

Before the physical work began ARES carried out a full three-dimensional scan of the four-door
Mulsanne and once this data had been processed it provided the basis for ARES to complete the
necessary CAD work on the car. Extensive computer modelling resulted in a new look for the Coupe
with a significantly more graceful roof line and re-profiled C-pillars seamlessly integrating into its rear
wing structure

To facilitate the new silhouette the entire roof was removed just aft of the top of the A-pillar and new
aluminium sections were extruded to match the profile of the CAD design. The angle of the rear screen
has been adjusted and a new section of the rear deck between the base of the screen and the original
boot lid was constructed, again from aluminium.

If this work wasn’t challenging enough ARES then set about moving the B-pillar further back to facilitate
the fitment of longer front doors to allow entry and egress to the rear seats. With the B-pillars in their
new location ARES was able to fabricate and install new side impact protection for the front doors and
to the rear quarter panels where the rear doors would have previously been. This might be an extensive
conversion but retaining the crash protection structures of the original vehicle was a vital part of the
project. As a result of this attention to detail the whole conversion of the ARES Design Coupe for the
Bentley Mulsanne carries full TüV* approval.

New rear quarter panels were fabricated from aluminium while the extended doors and the entire central
roof panel were constructed from the finest grade carbon fibre. Fresh chrome surrounds were required
for the re-profiled rear windows and roof line while bespoke glass units were commissioned for the front
doors and the rear side windows. Once the structural work was completed the entire car was treated to
a full respray prior to reassembly of all the exterior trim and glass components.

Given the extensive exterior changes there was plenty of work to be done on the interior of the Coupe.
ARES’s in house leather specialists were able to lovingly recreate many sections of trim, re-profiling
and modifying the original rear door trim panels to suit the new coupe bodystyle as well as perfectly
matching new leather panels to the original Bentley interior. The original front seats have been replaced
by bespoke luxury units suitable for the new coupe bodystyle.

Such an impressive and desirable coupe should have the performance to match the svelte looks and
this has been achieved in two ways. Firstly, the ARES Design Coupe for the Bentley Mulsanne weighs
450kg less than the original Mulsanne thanks to the use of lightweight carbon fibre and aluminium in its
construction. Secondly, thanks to extensive reworking of the ECU ARES’s technical staff have extracted
more power from the venerable 6.75-litre twin-turbo V8 which now develops over 700PS and 1100Nm
of torque, resulting in an unrivalled driving experience for this type of luxury vehicle.

With its Coupe ARES has utilised the time-honoured principles of coachbuilding to finely hone Bentley’s
Mulsanne into a unique and desirable coupe that offers the exceptional craftsmanship that buyers desire.
The ARES Design Coupe for the Bentley Mulsanne is truly the finest example of 21st century bespoke
manufacturing.

ARES Design Coupe for the Bentley Mulsanne from €715,000
On-sale: January 2018
Prices are indicative only due to the nature of coach-building and the creation of bespoke automotive projects.

*the world’s leading independent product testing and certification organisation

ARES Design for Land Rover Defender

When Land Rover launched its utilitarian 4×4 back in 1948 it couldn’t possibly have imagined that in 70 years’ time it would still have a dedicated following and an appeal that transcends social and geographical barriers. Everyone, it would seem, loves the Defender.

The ARES Land Rover Defender is an extreme expression of the 4×4, offering power, poise, luxury and panache in one stunning package. It is a thoroughly re-engineered example of what can be achieved with a keen eye for design coupled with engineering excellence.

ARES will build 53 examples of its Defender in a project in which it has teamed up with legendary Land Rover specialist JE Motor Works. At the heart of the ARES Defender is an upgraded engine, an extensively reworked Land Rover V8 that originally had a capacity of 4,552cc. Thanks to an increase in bore size (now 96mm, up from 94mm) the powerplant now displaces 4,748cc and develops 282PS and 440Nm of torque. Ensuring that this superlative engine can breathe effectively it now features a bespoke JE Motor Works exhaust manifold and a made to measure Milltek catalytic converter and exhaust system along with an ITG air intake. Power is transmitted via a six-speed automatic transmission.

Naturally enough performance is significantly improved and requires upgrades to the rest of the Defender. To accompany the ARES Defender’s imposing looks it has had its ride height increased by approximately 50mm and features bespoke JE Motor Works springs coupled with heavy duty Fox shock absorbers front and rear and revised and recalibrated anti-roll bars. To accompany the Defender’s new-found performance potential are a set of AP Racing front brakes featuring 362x32mm discs clamped by six-piston AP callipers.

Externally the ARES Defender has been given a significant makeover while retaining the original car’s unmistakable and iconic looks. Significantly wider Fondmetal alloy wheels fitted with 305/70 R18 Cooper off-road tyres have required bespoke wheel arch extensions which ARES manufactures in-house from carbon fibre. Once fitted they transform the Defender’s appearance, enhancing its rugged go-anywhere appeal. The ARES Defender also features a carbon bonnet along with lights that are significantly more hi-tech and powerful than its original units.
While ARES’s engineering and exterior transformation already sets the Defender apart as a unique reinterpretation of the classic off-road theme, it’s perhaps inside the 4×4 that ARES’s designers have really shown their eye for detail in a luxury transformation. Buyers of this type of bespoke vehicle demand an interior that ditches the utilitarian feel of the original, replacing it with a lavish magnificence that can only come from a thorough makeover.

Yet at the same time there needs to be a nod towards practicality and for that reason carpet was deliberately eschewed in favour of stylish, yet modern chequer plate aluminium for the flooring of the ARES Defender, combined with swathes of the finest Italian leather, endowing the interior with the required sumptuousness. Bespoke leather-clad Recaro seats offer supreme comfort yet hold occupants firmly in place while the feeling of luxury is further enhanced by a dashboard that has been transformed into one fit for a bespoke luxury off-roader.

A Webasto sunroof enhances the interior’s new-found luxury, allowing the occupants to be bathed in light while the leather interior roof-lining provides the final touch of opulence.

The ARES Land Rover is the finest example of the bespoke Defender off-roader on the market today.

ARES Design Defender from €200,000 – 250,000
On-sale: January 2018
Prices are indicative only due to the nature of coach-building and the creation of bespoke automotive projects.

ARES Design Porsche 911 GT3 Targa

High performance versions of Porsche’s iconic 911 have been at the top of the supercar tree for longer than most of its rivals care to remember and when combined with the legendary Renn Sport designation the results are unfailingly impressive. But what if you wanted, say, a GT3 RS but in a less hard core package, perhaps one that would allow wind in the hair motoring? In that case you’d be disappointed as this is a machine that Porsche itself doesn’t build.

Enter ARES Design and its ability to handcraft the finest bespoke creations. The brief was simple: to build a GT3 RS Targa. But this wasn’t just intended as an optical exercise, the Targa had to pack the same stunning performance potential as the GT3 RS Coupe.

ARES set about addressing the Targa’s flat-six powerplant and while the 911 Targa 4 GTS on which this conversion is based packs an impressive 450PS as standard, it fell short of the GT3 RS’s 500PS. While it would have been perfectly possible to tweak the Targa 4’s ECU to match the GT3 RS, ARES wanted to take the project to the next level and set about assembling the finest components to realise its potential.

Upgraded hybrid turbochargers were installed along with an enlarged throttle body from a 991.2 Porsche Turbo S, a machine that also donated part of its intake system for the ARES project. Along with a 160-bar high pressure fuel pump, high performance sports cats and a thorough reworking of the Targa’s ECU the results were undoubtedly impressive – 575PS and 675Nm of torque.

To ensure the Targa would have the chassis prowess to match the nigh-on 30 per cent increase in power, ARES installed a height-adjustable KW coilover suspension set up along with adjustable top mounts, and to ensure it had the stopping power a set of Porsche, Ceramic Composite Brakes were installed – 410mm x 36mm at the front with six-piston callipers and 390mm x 32mm at the rear with four-piston callipers. A Porsche GT3 RS 21-inch alloy wheel set, shod with Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tyres, completed the package.

New Porsche OEM GT3 RS body parts were to be added to the package but due to the wider front and rear track of the GT3 the Targa’s axles would need to be modified to ensure those stunning GT3 rims filled the wheel arches convincingly. The widening of the axles was achieved by utilising a blend of Porsche components, partly from the GT3 RS and Turbo S models and partly from Porsche’s Motorsport catalogue.

The stunning GT3 RS look was realised by the fitment of genuine OEM Porsche parts – front bumper, front wings, air ducts, sills, side panels – while at the rear ARES needed to construct a hybrid GT3 bumper from carbon fibre, carefully fusing elements of the Mk1 and Mk2 GT3 RS bumpers to fit the Targa’s body.

As a nod to the past ARES’s interior specialists decided to retrim the seat centres and door panels in Porsche Classic ‘Pepita’ houndstooth cloth which endows the high-tech Targa 4 GTS with a visual link to iconic Porsches from years gone by.

The finished product is a stunning-looking yet technologically advanced example of ARES Design’s innovative approach to bespoke conversions. By carefully utilising the finest components from Porsche and combining these with ARES’s cutting edge techniques it has created a stunning one-off Porsche that can stand proudly alongside the world’s finest supercars.

ARES Design 911 GT3 Targa from €300,000 – 400,000
On-sale: January 2018
Prices are indicative only due to the nature of coach-building and the creation of bespoke automotive projects.

ARES Design Corvette Stingray

Is there a more iconic American car than the Corvette Stingray? The first-generation Corvette was introduced in the 1950s but the historic Stingray moniker wasn’t used until the second generation (known as the C2) was unleashed in the 1960s. It is perhaps the most revered of all the Corvettes, representing the new-found freedom of the 1960s and it’s with this model that ARES chose to carry out this exquisite transformation.

The brief was to thoroughly bring the Stingray up to date with modern performance, road manners and interior appointments as well as fully restoring the Corvette in the process. The finished product is the result of over 3500 hours of work and a stunning one-off creation that showcases the entire range of ARES Design’s capabilities.

The original car was a 1964 model and while it was in good condition for a 50-year-old machine the entire car was stripped back to its constituent parts to see what could be reused and what required replacement. The latter heavily outnumbered the former. Prior to acquiring the car ARES had already sourced and completely rebuilt another C2 chassis frame and this was adapted to accept an LS3 525PS V8 and five-speed manual transmission along with a Viper Hammerhead rear differential.

While the mechanical installation was going on with the frame the body was repaired where necessary and modified to accept the new components such as the larger rear differential and a custom-made fuel tank. Wider wheels would eventually be fitted to the project so the inner wings were modified as were the wheel arches which were extended by two-inches while ensuring that the original arch profile was retained. All the holes in the firewall (23 in total) from when the car was originally constructed were welded up and new ones made to accept the brand-new wiring harness that was designed and installed in the new Corvette.

Once the body had been fully restored to a better-than-new standard and a big block 427-style bonnet had been fitted, it was treated to a full gloss black respray and once the chassis had been finished, complete with a new custom exhaust system that travels through the chassis in places, the two parts were married together and the interior build could begin in earnest.

The brief was to replace any items that were showing any sign of age, and while some items could be reused the vast majority were exhibiting the sort of patina you’d expect after over 50 years of use so new items were sourced where possible or remanufactured by ARES where required. Prior to carpeting the interior, Dynamat soundproofing material was installed to isolate the cockpit from road noise and the new air conditioning system was plumbed in.

Once that was done the handmade Wilton burgundy carpet was fitted and the components that ARES Design’s leather craftspeople had been manufacturing could be installed. Lovingly handcrafted door trim panels, a leather dashboard and centre console along with new sections of trim that had been made to hide the speakers for the new audio system were fitted. ARES custom-made the Corvette’s vertical stereo system complete with Bluetooth and phone connectivity while retaining its traditional looks. A media port was discreetly installed in the glovebox with USB ports, an aux port and an additional 12v charging port. The concealed stereo includes a 500w Alpine amplifier and concealed subwoofer.

The original car’s seats had been completely stripped back to their frames, powder coated and then rebuilt with all new springs and bushings and recontoured to supply more lateral support to both the base and backrest while not deviating from their original looks. The dials were rebuilt with a combination of old and new materials along with LED lighting while the windows were converted to electric operation along with a remote central locking system.

Externally the Stingray’s new wheels were fitted – custom made rims that emulate the original’s Turbine wheels but in modern sizes to allow the Corvette to make use of the power from its new LS3 motor. They measure 8.5×19-inches at the front and 11×20-inches at the rear and feature three finishes – blasted between the spokes, milled on the spoke surfaces and with polished barrels. Completing the transformation are modern LED lights hidden within the original housings.

What started out as a ‘restomod’ of a 1964 Corvette transformed into an exacting restoration at the same time and the finished article is a testament to the skill and dedication of ARES Design’s technicians and craftspeople. No doubt it will be fit for another 50 years’ service and must be one of the finest reimagined Corvette Stingrays the world will see.

ARES Design Corvette Stingray from €350,000 – 400,000
On-sale: January 2018
Prices are indicative only due to the nature of coach-building and the creation of bespoke automotive projects.

 

 

 



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