by john heinz
Want proof that the American dream is still intact? Just ask Scott Devon. As a kid, Devon nurtured elaborate fantasies of the sports cars of the day, plastering his high school locker with photos of a 1968 Jaguar XKE and salivating over the 1965 Corvette Stingray. His ultimate fantasy involved creating his own, one that would leave all the others in its dust. Well, this past summer, the just-unveiled Devon GTX set lap records at California’s Willow Springs Raceway and Mazda Raceway at Laguna Seca. The name is no coincidence. That kid grew up: Devon built it.
The Devon GTX is the embodiment of one man’s unwavering vision. A successful businessman already (he owns industry-leading Cole’s Quality Foods), Devon had all his life fantasized of crafting a worldclass supercar to rival the overseas output of, say, Italy or Germany. With his hard-won business acumen and fierce determination, the result was inevitable: Devon Motorworks was born. Along for the ride then and now is Devon’s wisely assembled crackerjack team of experts: NASA alum and San Diego State University aerospace engineering professor Dr. Joseph Katz brings serious cred as chief aerodynamicist, and the group’s testing and race team specialist is Justin Bell, world champion driver and son of British racing legend Derek Bell.
But it was Devon’s fortuitous synergy with lead designer Daniel Paulin that really signaled the birth of something momentous. An industry veteran who spent years as a lead designer at Ford Motor Company, Paulin’s conception soared: “I was inspired by fighter jets,” he reveals. “I wanted this car to have a cockpit feel and to keep it as clean as possible, not to have too much distraction from the main shape.”
True to its designer’s aerial inspiration, the Devon GTX’s shell is made of aircraft-quality carbon fiber. Its doors articulate up and forward—an unusual, but here somehow natural, design element. Existing at the pinnacle of where artistry meets mechanics, the GTX is a masterwork of flow and precision unlike any exotic sports car ever made. Devon and Paulin, both moved by Mies van der Rohe’s architectural style and the sensual curvature of Henry Moore sculpture, shared a singular vision. Their creation is a departure from recent design trends, tending more toward voluptuousness than hard and sharp edges, while adhering to the classic American body type with a long front end and tucked-away cabin.
Devon’s realized ambitions herald a new wave in modern supercar design: The GTX is fast and gorgeous, but at the same time sophisticated, muscular and arrogantly American. And a collector’s item to boot, with a manufacturing forecast calling for only 36 bespoke vehicles per year—a limitation allowing limitless possibilities, as far as personalized attention is concerned. “Our core team,” Devon insists, “will meticulously oversee the production of each vehicle, and will have technicians ready to fly to our customers should they require service.”
Now that the GTX—Devon Motorworks’ inaugural project—is out of the gate and soon to hit its industry stride, Devon is well on to fulfilling his next American dream: making Devon Motorworks a household name. With more cars, motorcycles, watches and other enthusiastrelated gear in the works, Devon intends for his brand to be an integral, permanent fixture of today’s swiftly evolving car culture. And chances are it’ll happen. The GTX is proof: Devon may dream big, but his follow-through is fairly spectacular.
photographs courtesy of devon motorworks
Cover shoot: Behind the scenes with Pitbull for the October 2014 issue of Ocean Drive magazine.