Eterniti Motors – the fledgling UK luxury car start-up – has shown its new Hemera SUV ahead of its debut at this week’s 2011 Frankfurt motor show.
It’s now become apparent that Eterniti will rebody the Porsche Cayenne 4x4 at its London factory to an even higher spec – they say – than when it emerges from Stuttgart.
So the Eterniti Hemera is a posh Cayenne?
Seemingly, yes. These first renerings show a crossover with numerous revised body panels, but its makers say the majority of the changes will take place inside.
Eterniti (not to be confused with Infiniti, based next door at the IAA Frankfurt show this week) says the cabin has been retrimmed to provide two reclining rear seats, iPads and drinks chillers.
On the face of it, the Hemera is aimed slap bang at international markets where top-end, luxury sporting SUVs are popular. Think the Middle East, Russia and emerging Asian markets. Sounds like the same sort of space as Aston Martin is targeting with its proposed Lagonda SUV.
How serious are Eterniti?
That’s the $64m question. The Hemera at Frankfurt is described as a prototype, but the company promises first deliveries in 2012.
Eterniti is based in London and is backed by an international consortium with experience in retail, premium products, motor sport and high-end components. The details are likely to be made public at the IAA – an important announcement, because there will be plenty of scepticism over this project.
So far, Eterniti has confirmed that Alastair Macqueen and Johnny Herbert are involved. Macqueen worked on the Jaguar XJ220 supercar project and won at Le Mans, while Herbert was an F1 driver for a decade.
Eterniti Motors: the plan
Eterniti will start in London but says it wants to launch further showrooms around the world from 2012. If there’s a market for souped-up Cayennes – and that’s already a crowded marketplace with numerous German tuners in play – then insiders suggest we may even see a full range of Eterniti luxury cars in future.
If they can get in there before Lagonda, and the proposed luxo-SUVs from Jaguar and Lamborghini, then maybe there’s a chance of success. This start-up may yet prove to be more nimble than the giants of the motor industry.