The hull is also filled with closed-cell styrofoam to help the car stay afloat. The engine for the Panther is the latest-generation Acura 3.7-liter VTEC V-6 engine, custom-fitted with aluminium parts, an overhead camshaft cylinder head and 24 valves. Both intake and exhaust valves are controlled by Acura’s Variable valve Timing and lift Electronic Control (VTEC) system.
This engine produces 305 horsepower at 6,300 rpm and on land the Panther can reach speeds of around 80mph. It needs to be travelling at around 15mph to enter the water and can then reach top speeds of almost 45mph. To drive the Panther in water, the driver must put the four-speed gear changer in neutral, pull a knob to switch the transfer case to ‘jet drive’, hydraulically lift the wheels and tyres out of the water, and start boating. This entire process, according to its maker takes less than 15 seconds. The Panther price starts at £49,800 ($76,000) for a “Rolling chassis,” £70,000 ($106,000) for a “Turn-key minus” version, and £89,000 ($135,000) for a complete Panther.
- Written by Seyi Gesinde