hen you think of Canada, most people would think of igloos, beavers, maple syrup and excessive politeness. Unbeknownst to many people, Canada did at one point, have its very own supercar.
Design and Aesthetics
The Plethore looked great aesthetically. It was made completely out of carbon fibre, including amonocoque tub, similar to present day Mclaren models. This allowed the Canadian supercar to be extremely light. In fact, it hit the scales at 1250 kg's. Thats light even for present day standards. The body, although unique, drew comparisons from other supercar manufacturers. If you look closely, you'll be able to see body lines like the Bugatti EB-110, doors that go up like a Lamborghini and a side profile that looks like a Mclaren MP4-12C. Whoever designed the front and side profile did a amazing job. The rear is a completely different story however. The rear taillights look like they took them directly from a Ferrari F430 and the rear bumper and exhaust look like they were trying to design a toy; not a supercar. Somewhat disappointing.
The interior was a rather interesting subject. Many people were very excited to see a centre mounted driver seat, with two passenger seats, similar to that of the famous Mclaren F1. Made completely out of carbon fibre, the seats showed promise. Pre-production renderings gave the interior a very futuristic look, similar to a Tesla. In all reality, it had a long way to go to compete with cars that had similar price tags. Maybe it was the orange and black leather that seemed cheap or the shape of the steering wheel. Either way, it was less than desirable.
The actual model name for the Plethore was the LC-750. Like similar supercar naming schemes, the "750" comes from the 750 horsepower that was created by the 6.2L supercharged V8 Chevrolet engine block. The widely used LS engine, commonly found in Corvette's, is mounted in the rear of the vehicle. This allows power to be more easily trasnfered to the wheels since it is also rear-wheel drive. In addition to the LS engine option, there was an option to have a 1100 horsepower engine backed by Pratt & Miller. Although it doesn't seem as appealing to have an LS engine in a supercar that costs $750,000 CAD, it made the most sense for a start-up automotive company.
HTT Automobile, out of Quebec, Canada, was founded by car fanatics Luc Chartrand and Carl Descoteaux. They set out to make a truly unique and perfectly built supercar. This was deemed as quite the lofty task, as Canadian supercar heritage and manufacturing was non-existent. The initial prototype was revealed in Montreal Motor Show as a pre-produciton model under the name, the Locus Plethore. The HTT Plethore was met with much intrigue and raved reviews of the body lines and overall aesthetics. Upon more funding, HTT would begin production of the retail model of the Plethore. Enter, Dragons Den.
Dragons Den Pitch
In February of 2011, Luc Chartrand and Carl Descoteaux presented their company and supercar on the popular Canadian investing show, Dragons Den. After presenting their vision and showing off the Plethore in detail, they asked the investors for $1.5 million for 20% equity stake in their business. Nearly all the "Dragons" had passed on the deal, but Robert Herjavec showed interest. This should come off as no surprise, as Robert is an avid car collector and knows a thing or two about the industry. After some discussion with Brett Wilson (another Dragon who initially said "no" to the investment), they came up with a partnership that would see the duo gain 20% of the business for $1 million. In additon to equity, they had the rights to purchasing the first three production cars at cost. After accepting the deal and shaking hands, it seemed that Canadian Manufactoriers had found the deal that would propel their supercar into the cost-heavy industry.
After Robert Herjavec showed his interest in the company and gave a verbal agreement to invest in HTT, he made sure that they knew the deal was contingent on a test drive. Things were down hill from here. Robert did indeed test one of the vehicles but a failed transmission kiboshed the entire deal.
An investor outside of the show, then stepped in after the failed Dragons Den investment to help HTT through the production stage of the Plethora. This didn't however help their cause very much. By 2012, the presence of HTT was virtually dead, so its safe to assume that the investor was not convinced on the market potential. This comes even after they lowered the MSRP to $400,000 CAD. It seemed that the possibility of Canada being a supercar manufactuuer was nothing more than a mere dream.
In 2013, news broke that they had revamped the previous model with an even more powerful engine. HTT called it the LC-1300, for its supposed 1300 horsepower. It was said that the engine was an 8.2L V8 taken from the Dodge Viper. Credible sources had hinted at it being an all-wheel-drive vehicle, so weight would increase but so would safety and handling. The prototype was seen at Montreal Grand Prix week but looked no different from the LC-750. They seemed to have just slapped a new drivetrain under the same body and called it a day. Word was the men behind HTT had claimed they were going to be building 99 total units of the LC-1300, but failed to do so. Wehter it was lack of funding or production issues, the 99 units never saw the light of day; other than an appearance in the game Asphalt 8.
Maybe we will see a new model come out in the near future that utilizes a more modern engine and styling. If this does happen, HTT would most likely not be able to capitalize on the hype they created in the early 2010's. Until then, the HTT Plethore merely represents what could have been.