The car you see here may look like any other Ariel Atom on first glance, but don’t be fooled. It’s the Atom 4, and it’s an entirely new car.
That gorgeous exposed tubular space frame chassis is a fresh design that’s stiffer than the one it replaces, the suspension has been overhauled with new geometry, the aero balance has been tweaked, and it’s now packing a different engine.
Gone is the old Honda K20Z VTEC engine - previously available in N/A and supercharged forms in the Atom - replaced with the turbocharged K20C borrowed from the FK8 Civic Type R. It’s been fitted with an Ariel ECU, and it develops 316bhp. Launch control and traction control are optional, and you’ll be able to alter the boost pressure if you want it. Which should make rainy track days a little less terrifying.
Want some stats? Of course you do. You’re looking at 0-60mph in 2.8 seconds, while 100mph from rest is dispatched in a dizzying 6.8 seconds. Sufficiently fast, we’d say.
The starting price is £39,975, but it’s possible to inflate that price quite dramatically. Along with the aforementioned launch control/TC options, you can also spec better brakes, Ohlins dampers to replace the standard-fit Bilstein shocks, and carbonfibre body panels.
If you don’t have that kind of money and/or would like to avoid destroying your face with every prod of the accelerator pedal, you could just settle for watching the car at the Goodwood Festival of Speed this weekend, where it’ll be making its public debut.
Via Top Gear