It looks like sacrilege and it sure feels like it too but this is not done in vain by those hellbent on destruction, or better known as the labcoats of ATP Automotive Testing Papenburg. Like any new car, the GMA T.50 is required to be put through extensive testing before it is ever imparted into the care of the few customers that can afford one. They are driven in harsh conditions for thousands of kilometres in the name of reliability to ensure the components don’t fail but prototypes and test vehicles are also handed over to bureaus to test the crucial aspect of safety.
Here, the T.50 goes through an agonising airbag calibration test which has the V12 model put through the gauntlet. This includes simulated potholes, uneven cobblestone surfaces, being launched off a ramp, a simulated steel curb collision and even being driven up a gravel mound. The model is also driven into a simulated wild boar weighing in at 80 kg all to ensure the airbags are correctly calibrated and don’t deploy when they are not required to.
The XP1 model shown here, or the first prototype, is almost at the end of testing life cycle. Thereafter it will be used by the service team as a training tool before being retired permanently in the Gordon Murray Automotive museum.