The Ariel Atom is a high performance open air roadster that is produced by the Ariel Motor Company in Somerset, England. The Atom is built with an exoskeleton type frame and features very minimal bodywork to go along with the sports car’s lightweight theme. The Ariel Atom is powered by a variety of power plants ranging from a supercharged Honda K series four cylinders to GM Ecotec engines with outputs ranging from 245 HP to 300 HP depending upon the application. The standard Atom is able to accelerate from 0 to 60 MPH in only 2.7 seconds and can reach a top speed of 150 MPH. Ariel is currently working on the Atom 500, taking the lightweight sports car to the next level with a 2.4 Liter 10,000 RPM V8 made from a pair of Suzuki Hyabusa engines that will produce a maximum output of 500 HP.
From its humble beginnings as the brainchild of then-student Nik Smart, the Ariel Atom has become a childhood fantasy brought to life by speed enthusiasts of all ages. It’s hard to believe that in the ten years that it has been around, the Atom has evolved through three incarnations with the latest one, the Atom 500 V8 , being prepared to make its way into production soon.
To commemorate the company’s 10th year anniversary, Ariel took the time to host some Atom owners from all corners of the world at the company’s headquarters in Somerset in the UK. Over forty Atom owners took the company up on their offer and gathered at the headquarters to partake in the festivities, one of which was the building of a live and running Atom 500 V8 that took a little over five hours to build from the ground up.
We would’ve loved to have been part of all the hoopla, but unfortunately, we don’t have an Atom in our garages. But in any case, we do want to send our congratulations to the company for turning 10 years old. It’s a great achievement in itself, but here’s to hoping for more years of success for you boys in the UK.
Sometimes, too much of a good thing leads to bad consequences. Try telling that to DDM Works, who seem to believe that too fast isn’t fast enough.
The South Carolina-based car tuners recently took an Ariel Atom - by itself, the Atom is already ridiculously fast - and decided that the car’s 300 horsepower and 4.6 lbs/hp, which allows the rocket to blast-off from a stand-still position to 60mph in just under three seconds, still doesn’t cut it for their liking.
So they did what any other “genius” would do; they decided to install a Borg-Warner S256 turbocharger and combine it with the car’s existing Harrop HTV1320-LSJ supercharger engine.
Anytime you have ‘turbo’ and ‘super’ in the same sentence, then you probably have something that can just about flat-out fly. Now consider the Atom’s previous speed just with its engine and add it with a turbocharger. What you get is a car that packs 375 horsepower distributed on just 1,375 pounds. That’s just 3.4 lb/hp, which, if you’re keeping track, is just about as fast a road production car can get without its wheels lifting off the ground.
If you’re looking for a car that’s got some serious speed and power and isn’t expensive to boot – although it looks more like a supercharged race kart than an actual vehicle – then TMI Autotech has the answer to your needs in the form of the entry level Ariel Atom 3 , which goes for a pretty modest price tag of $49,980.
Judging from the looks of the Atom 3, you’d probably be having second thoughts on why this car is considered street-legal, but as a matter of fact, it is. You can just imagine burning rubber on a car that comes with a chassis comprised of steel tubings and aluminum bulkheads. Scary thought, isn’t it?
To make things a little more nerve-wracking, the entry-level Atom 3 has a Honda K20 engine that’s capable of producing up to 219 hp, a pretty impressive figure, but is ironically lower than the standard 245 hp Atom 3.
Now if you think that 219 hp isn’t enough to satiate your need for speed, then TMI also has a super-charged 300 hp Atom 3 at their disposal. We don’t know about you guys, but we kind of still value our lives a little bit so unless you have a death wish or something, then we’d steer clear of the 300 mph Atom 3.
If you’re a speed freak that has dreams of sitting behind the wheel of a car that has Veyron -like speeds but don’t have the moolah to spend for one, we now have a much cheaper alternative that has roughly the same power of the Veyron at a little over one-eighth the price.
The folks from Ariel , creators of the ultra-fast Atom , have released the price tag for the V8 production-ready Atom. As it stands, each car goes for around €134,000. With the power coming from a V8 engine based on two Hayabusa motorbike engines, the Ariel Atom is the literal and figurative definition of a rocket on wheels.
The production version of the Atom V8 can accelerate from 0-100 km/h in just under 2.5 seconds, numbers that equal that of the more obscenely expensive Bugatti Veyron. For around €134,000, it’s a relatively cheap bargain for a car that’s not only obscenely fast, but extremely rare as well – only 25 units have been made with 19 already been sold.
So if you’re the lucky six that can pluck away the remaining Ariel Atoms, consider yourself lucky beyond measure.
Unlike the traditional Ariel Atom, this high powered formula inspired light weight roadster will be no budget super car. According to Ariel’s CEO Simon Saunders, the 500 HP V8-powered Atom 500 will cost £100,000 or about $160K American. The reports of the 500 being powered by the Caterham Levante’s 10K RPM 2.4 Liter eight cylinder were incorrect, instead the super lightweight will use a Frankenstein combination of two Suzuki Hayabusa engines shaped in a “V.” The $50,000 price tag for the engine as well as the $17,000 transmission account for a sizeable portion of the Atom 500’s overall cost.
Despite owner’s dreams of being able to hang with the big boys while still keeping a budget, the Atom 500’s six digit cost of ownership may have just become out of your price range. Even in one of the company’s four cylinder powered Atom’s you would be able to run circles around any super car due to the Ariel ’s light weight simplistic nature. What would be interesting is to see if the Ariel Atom 500 could outrun two Hayabusas, but for $160,000 couldn’t you buy a pair of the Suzuki super bikes and try to make your own?
We warned you it was coming , the light weight sports car builder, Ariel, has just released a ridiculously powerful version of their open cockpit two-seater, the Atom 500. Although the V8 is quite small, displacing only 2.4 Liters, the blown five valves per cylinder design and 10,000 RPM capabilities means that there is more than 500 HP on tap. The 6 speed Sadev sequential gearbox will get a lot of use in the Atom 500, it features flatshift capabilities, paddle shifters as well as launch control.
Like the old Pirelli slogan says: “power is nothing without control,” so in order to get the Atom 500 to stick to the road, the vehicle’s engineers had to fit and F1 inspired aerofoil to the nose as well as a GT sized rear wing. Stopping power is provided by a foursome of Alcon four-piston brake calipers housed inside of lightweight Dymag magnesium wheels.
The power to weight ratio of the Atom 500 is almost unheard of for a road car, over 1000 HP per ton. If you thought the old Atom was absolutely amazing, the 500 should be nothing short of insanity.
Ariel Atom is driving in its purest form. It’s the kind of wind-in-your-hair, knuckles-dragging-on-the-ground race car for the streets that makes you thank God the wheel was invented. It’s as light as a feather and even has a version with a 500 hp V-8. As their motto says, "No doors, no roof, no compromise!" Well, make that one compromise: the Atom now has a windshield option. So now you won’t need a helmet for high-speed fun, but with a windshield in place, will some of sensation be gone?
Explanation? Ariel boss Simon Saunders: "We believe in offering Atom customers maximum choice. The windscreen widens that choice and is the first in a range of options dedicated to keeping the Atom the best in its class." In other words, you can now take your Atom on your daily commute, ha!
The price for the windscreen will be somewhere around £1,000 ($2,000). Better buy a helmet, no?
Ariel announced a new version of the Atom: the Ariel Atom 500 - a small 500 kilos model, powered by a V8 engine that delivers 500 hp. The Atom 500 will have over 1000bhp per tonne (compared to a Bugatti Veyron’s 521bhp/tonne) and will be built in limited numbers.
The supercharged engine features all alloy construction, 5 valves per cylinder and a dry sump. The gearbox will have flatshift capability, a paddle gearchange with manual override as well as launch and traction controls.
The new car is recognisable by twin rear intakes for intercoolers and will feature a unique colour scheme for chassis, wheels and bodywork combined with carbon fibre panels and carbon fibre aerofoils. Other features will include chromemoly aerofoil wishbones, integrated function steering wheel, Alcon 4 pot caliper brakes and Dymag magnesium wheels.
The Atom 500 will be produced in Somerset and deliveries will begin this Spring.
The Ariel Atom managed to win again the title of the fastest car in the world on the 0-100 mph - 0 sprint. Autocar took 29 of the hottest cars in the world, and Ariel Atom managed a record time of 11.35 seconds.