Whatever it is you’re doing, keep doing it. The lights on the Ultima and Metro SR are my favorites. Well done.
Thanks! Honestly I have thought about removing the second pair, but I do really like how quirky the Lynk & Co 03 is and I wanted to channel some of that energy.
looks good! I like the SMC Ultima, those headlight must takes you ages to make, good job
From the SMC Heritage Museum
In 1960, SMC sold what is probably the most iconic car in their history. The company wanted to prove that it can create a car that is luxurious, stylish and engaging to drive, so that SMC can establish itself as a premium brand.
The 1960 SMC Arezzo
The Arezzo was small, with just a 2.2m wheelbase, and it weighed in at just over 1090kg. The engine was a new, although quite expensive to develop 24 valve, SOHC 3.0l Boxer 6 producing 152kw (206PS/204bhp). Power was sent through a 4 speed manual gearbox (Although there were some limited models with an experimental 3 speed automatic) to the rear wheels.
SMC also used this car to experiment with all-round disc brakes, all round double wishbone suspension, and Hydraulic Power Steering. in 1963, a convertible model was released, dubbed the “Arezzo Aperta”.
The Arezzo set a standard for sportiness, comfort and style that all SMC models since have had to meet, a standard so high, that it more often than not resulted in vehicle development going over-budget, and the cars significantly more expensive than the competition.
The story of Akira and Solana
Back in the Mid 80s, Akira was looking to enter the premium car market. Akira cars, while dependable and and well built, did not appeal to buyers looking for premium/upmarket vehicles. Around the same time, premium car maker Solana was performing poorly and was close to bankruptcy. Akira saw this as an opportunity to break in to the premium/luxury car market, and purchased the Solana brand, factories and patents.
Because the Solana cars were expensive to produce and not selling well, Akira scrapped production of all Solana models, and instead took existing Akira models, modified them to have premium interiors and technologies, and sold them under the “Solana” brand. The cars would remain mechanically, and, save for some slight exterior modifications, visually almost identical.
This strategy seemed to attract some premium buyers, particularly existing Akira buyers that were buying up. While the Solana models were selling in acceptable quantities, it was determined that premium buyers were put off by Solana branded cars just being rebadged Akiras with leather wrapped interiors. Akira had also started to make the shift to make their regular models more premium, thus negating the need for the Solana brand. Akira decided to retire the Solana brand after 2006, and instead, turn “Solana” in to the designation for the most luxurious trim of a given model, but this strategy did not seem to help sales in the premium segment either. The “Solana” name disappeared altogether in 2008.
In 2015, Akira announced that it had created a semi-independent subsidiary to design and build cars for the Premium and Luxury segment. “Akira-Solana” was born, and they would use existing Akira technology, engines etc., but have complete control over the design, manufacturing and sales of vehicles. These cars will be sold under the Akira brand, and will be sold at Akira Dealerships. Buyers would get unique experiences, with some dealerships even having separate sections set out just for the premium cars.
The first Akira-Solana car was unveiled in 2019 for the 2020 model year:
The first car to come out of the new venture is the G3. The G3 comes with trim levels. The entry level “G3E”, and mid-range “G3S”, both come with a 2.0l turbo inline 4, making 160kw or 220kw respectively. The top of the range “G3 Pro” (Pictured here). The G3 Pro comes with a 3.2l twin turbo V6, producing 352kw (472hp/478PS).
All models are RWD as standard, and AWD is available as an option on the Pro trim in all countries. AWD is available as an option in select countries on the G3S trim. G3E and G3S models have an 8 speed Automatic while the G3 Pro has a 7 Speed Dual Clutch.
This would be a nice answer to the question: “What if the current Mazda 6/Atenza were a rear-drive premium sports sedan in the mould of the BMW 3/4-Series, complete with high-performance trims à la M3/4?” Come to think of it, a detuned version of the V6 in the Pro trim would be ideal for a high-end trim between it and the G3 S.
Yeah, throw in a little bit of Lexus in there and it pretty much summarises how this car came about.
The detuned V6 is a great idea. I’ll definitely try to make that trim level.
My first attempt at making an open convertible and interior. I can’t wait for the next automation update which will make this so much easier.
The 1963 Arezzo Aperta
It’s not perfect, I couldn’t get the rear view mirror in, and some bits were clipping. out of the body. These angles helped hide the flaws.
And because I thought this looked cool:
Fun fact; the 1960 Arezzo has a top speed of 257kph, making it one of the fastest cars of its day.
Solana’s final models, Part 1.
This luxury sedan was designed to be the flagship model of the Solana range. However, its expensive development and high retail price meant that it never sold well enough. By 1986, Solana was purchased by Akira, and the existing range of Solana models were scrapped in 1989.
The car had Solana’s own 2.8l inline 6, producing 120kw mated to a 4-speed automatic transmission.
Love the super modern design, and the mazda-esque rear lights.
Would you be interested in me making a track-attack variant?
Here’s a few of my designs (Race Cars (Sharing, Commissions..) Suggest your own cars!) if you want to make up your mind.
Be sure to let me know man!
Thanks! I’ve actually thought about a track version (and I’m not very good at those) so this actually sounds like a great idea!
I’ve actually made some significant changes to the car since the original post, but I’m happy to share both (pre-change and post-change) versions with you on your thread, and you can choose whichever one you’d like to work with.
That sounds great! Do share on my thread, we can discuss the details there
Akira-Solana G3 Team Crest Racing
Special thanks to @matisse.msknt for making this awesome race version of the G3, though I corrected the tail light design and made some small tweaks.
Solana’s final models, Part 2
Solana wanted a 2+2 GT car to go alongside the GL300. The GT car would initially share a lot of the technology with the GL300 Sedan, but in a shorter, sportier 2+2 body style. However, halfway through the development of the two cars, Solana decided that the GT car would need to compete with more prestigious European cars, and as such would need to be more powerful a more powerful V8, and have as much cutting edge technology as possible. The car’s development was already heading towards being overbudget, so it was agreed that the car would instead have a turbocharged variant of the 2.8 liter straight 6 of the GL300. The car was released in 1987, a year after the company was purchased by Akira.
1987 Solana GT
To be sportier than the Sedan, it has a shorter wheelbase, and a more sloping front-end. The sleeker design choices led to the headlights and grill being smaller than the sedan.
The GT would also have a 3-layered taillight design, to differentiate it from the sedan.
The 2.8 liter straight 6 engine is turbocharged, producing 210kw. It was mated to a 4 speed automatic gearbox.
The car was sold between 1987 until the production of all Solana cars was discontinued in 1989, making the GT a very rare vehicle, especially considering that only 2101 of them were sold throughout the entire world. It is now seen as a rare collectable vehicle among enthusiasts.
2018 Breckenridge Citizen
A large American Sedan by Breckenridge Motor Company.
Available with a 3l Turbo V6 in the civilian specification. Rear wheel drive as standard but AWD available as an option.
Citizen Police Interceptor
The police interceptor variant has a more powerful 380HP 3.5l twin turbo V6, strengthened suspension and AWD to ensure that the no criminal would escape it.
Thinking of committing a crime?
Let’s hope your getaway car is good enough.
In 2018, Akira showcased the Concept GT500 as a luxurious GT car. A luxurious, 2 door GT car that would sport a naturally aspirated V8. It would serve as a preview of the flagship model of the revived Solana range of vehicles. The design of the car started off in a partnership with SMC and their Eterea GTS. However, both companies had decided to split off the partnership, as they couldn’t agree on the direction each company wanted to take. The final agreement would allow both cars to keep their original exterior designs and the shared chassis design, but would no longer share drivetrains and technology or be built in the same factory.
2018 Akira-Solana Concept GT 500
Two years had passed since, and Akira has finally unveiled the complete production model. Some changes were made to the styling, but the car would remain largely faithful to the concept showcased years earlier. The car would also be renamed from “GT500” to the “One”, to denote the car’s position at the top of the range.
2021 Akira-Solana One
Featuring a naturally aspirated 5 liter V8, producing 312kw, and rear wheel drive.
The car has an 9 speed automatic transmission, with electronic limited slip differential at the rear.
While it does go fast, the car is meant to be a comfortable long distance cruiser.
Although, if you do want to go faster, rumour has it that Akira is still in talks with SMC to license the 480kw twin turbo V10 as seen in the Eterea GTS.
In 1965, Akira released a small lightweight sportscar. With its 2 meter wheelbase, 698kg weight, and 70kw 4 pot boxer engine, the car was an instant hit among enthusiasts.
With 70kw and its 698kg weight, this little car was quite fast, often keeping up with cars with twice as much power.
It also handled like a dream.
In 2020, Akira wanted to make a modern Microsport, inspired by the original. To allow for better weight distribution, it was decided earlier on that the car would have be mid-engined. The new Microsport would be only slightly larger than the original, with its 2.3 meter wheelbase. The car would also have modern-retro styling cues calling back to the original.
The car would have a modern 2 liter 4 pot boxer engine. The naturally aspirated unit produces 142kw. more than twice what the original car made.
Due to modern safety requirements, the car weighs more than the original, although at 1019kg, it’s still very lightweight. Being a niche product, its being produced in limited quantities, around 500 a year, and its not cheap either.
1965 Breckenridge Chariot 305
The pony car for the gentleman.
The 305 cubic inch V8 means this luxury pony is as fast as it is elegant.
Hope you can afford the fuel though.
SMC Anda Superleggera Squadra Corse
This super lightweight racing car is based on the already light Anda sports car from SMC. with its 346kw (464hp) 2.2l engine and its 1076kg weight, Professional racing teams will appreciate this little rocket on race day.
Seen next to a standard Anda, the Superleggera SC is lower, tighter and much, much more powerful.
The car also sports a minimalist livery inspired by the first ever Squadra Corse developed racecar, the MRX from 1995, although, prospective buyers can buy the car as a blank slate for their own custom liveries. As with the regular Anda, the barrier for entry is quite low,. Your race team can get one at just under $70k.
1979 Akira Metro
The first generation of the Metro, introduced as a compact family sedan. The Metro was Akira’s first front wheel drive car.
Engine options include a a 1.4, 1.6 and 1.8 liter 4 cylinder engines. Transmission options included a 3 speed automatic (available only on the 1.6 and 1.8 liter variants) and a 4 speed manual.
The car was facelifted for 1982 onwards, which would last until the Metro II in 1986. For MY1985, Akira released the special edition Metro 200SE.
The 200SE served to test out new technologies in development for the next generation of Akira cars, such as electronic fuel injection and a newly developed 4 speed automatic.
The car came with an experimental 2.0l 4 cylinder with EFI, and a new 4 speed automatic. The car was also fitted with other premium features such as leather seats, 4 speaker audio system, and the exclusive copper coloured wheels and trim accents.