Marc Philipp Gemballa recently unveiled its first model, the Marsien, which is an off-road capable supercar based on latest-gen Porsche 911 Turbo S. Do note that Marc Philipp Gemballa is not to be mistaken as the Gemballa GmbH German tuning company that was founded by Uwe Gemballa. Uwe's son, Marc Philipp Gemballa, has now founded an all new company by the same name as his. Meanwhile, the Marsien takes its name from the French word for Martian, inspired by Mars-like sand dunes of the desert in the UAE where the car was developed.
- Powered by a six-cylinder engine tuned by Ruf that produces 740hp
- Can tackle rugged terrain with bespoke suspension provided by specialist KW Automotive
- Production limited to only 40 units for Europe, Middle East and US markets
Marc Philipp Gemballa Marsien: what’s under its hood?
Let’s start with the engine, which has received one of the most significant upgrades on the Marsien. The Marsien is powered by the same flat-six turbocharged petrol engine from the 911 Turbo S, but has been tuned by tuning expert Ruf to now produce 740hp and 930Nm of torque, up from the 650hp and 800Nm of a standard 911 Turbo S.
This allows the Marsien to hit 0-100kph in 2.6sec on its way to a top speed of over 320kph. Customers can further opt for a ‘second stage’ upgrade that takes power output to 830hp, thanks to the addition of enhanced turbochargers, revised engine mapping and transmission changes. Marc Philipp Gemballa says the engine still complies with the latest Euro 6 emissions regulations.
Marc Philipp Gemballa Marsien: underpinnings
The base vehicle has received a number of radical changes to make it capable of tackling rugged terrain. The suspension on the Marsien is entirely bespoke and provided by specialist KW Automotive, which has fitted double wishbones at the front with solid piston damper technology and ‘intelligent active damper control’.
The ground clearance can be increased from 120mm in ‘road mode’ to 250mm for off-roading. The dampers are said to react to the conditions in 20 milliseconds. In addition to the drive modes provided by Porsche for road driving, Marc Philipp Gemballa has equipped the Marsien with drive modes for gravel, mud, sand and snow.
For customers wanting even more hardcore off-roading abilities, there’s an optional package with Reiger suspension and rally dampers that offer even more suspension travel and ground clearance than is standard. The Marsien rides on a set of forged aluminium wheels with centre locking, wrapped with Michelin Ultra High Performance and All Terrain tyres.
Other upgrades include an entirely carbon-fibre body, manufactured by a German company that also supplies Formula 1 teams. There’s a bespoke titanium exhaust, the transmission has been revised to deliver power to all four wheels more consistently and the bodywork has been developed using CFD (computational fluid dynamics) software to ensure efficiency and safety at high speed.
Marc Philipp Gemballa Marsien: styling and interior
The Marc Philipp Gemballa Marsien looks completely bespoke and very different from its donor car. Although it’s still identifiable as a 911 Turbo from some angles, almost all body panels are completely unique to the Marsien. It gets a much sportier looking front bumper, along with a new bonnet that has a huge scoop in the middle. The air intakes along the sides are much larger and the door panels are new as well. The Marsien looks the most distinct from the rear, thanks to the new rear wing design and the bespoke rear bumper with twin exhaust outlets and diffuser arrangement.
Inside, there’s a choice of a full leather or Alcantara interior trim to complement the carbon-fibre centre console, although Marc Philipp Gemballa says "full customisation" is available, suggesting customers can specify the cabin as lavishly as their budget allows. The interior design and equipment list, however, is pretty similar to that of the standard 911 Turbo S.
Marc Philipp Gemballa Marsien: availability
The Marsien is currently being homologated only for the European, Middle Eastern and US markets, with production limited to just 40 units. Of those, 10 limited launch edition models have already been sold, and more than half of the remaining 30 have been accounted for as well. Seeing one on our roads here in India is thus very unlikely.