Caterham Seven

Caterham Seven

We’re all familiar with today’s Caterham Seven or the Lotus -badged, simpler sports car that preceded it. It’s a pure driver’s car suitable for both public roads and tracks, although it’s not exactly the vehicle you’d want to drive to work on a daily basis. However, if you need a no-nonsense sports car in your life, you can’t go wrong with the Seven.

You can have anything from a Suzuki -sourced, 660cc to a 2.0-liter Duratec engine under the hood. That gives it an output range from 80 ponies for street cruising to as much as 311 horsepower for quick laps around the track. Sure, 311 horses is quite a lot for a vehicle that weighs only 1,147 pounds, but the power-to-weight ratio can get even more ridiculous than that. All you have to do is head to Donkervoort, the Dutch shop that has been manufacturing its Seven-based sports cars since 1978.

Its latest creation, the D8 GTO, is unlike anything Donkervoort ever built. Sure, it resembles its predecessors, but things are completely different when it comes to the GTO’s shell and powerplant. Unlike other D8s, which came with either Ford or Audi four-bangers, the GTO comes with Ingolstadt’s famed 2.5-liter, five-cylinder engine. Output ranges between 340 and 380 horsepower, more than anything Caterham has delivered so far. As if that wasn’t enough, the D8 GTO received a full carbon-fiber body that results in an insane 1,543-pound curb weight. This end is a power-to-weight ratio that rivals the initial Bugatti Veyron’s ratio. I’m talking about a supercar motivated by 987 ponies; is this amazing or what?

So how does a D8 GTO look, sound and run? You can find out in XCAR’s comprehensive review in the above video . Make sure you don’t miss it, you won’t be seeing one of these monsters on U.S. streets anytime soon.

Posted on by Nico DeMattia  

Caterham is just one of many car manufactures that have built replicas or continuation cars based on the iconic Lotus Seven. That said, Caterham is the only one that has become notorious for its Seven continuation cars and its numerous iterations. Ranging from the lightest and cheapest Caterham Seven Caterham Seven 160 to the powerful and expensive Seven 620 R, the Caterham line of Sevens is nothing short of impressive. Caterham cars remain rather scarce in the States, but for 2015, the automaker is growing its lineup in America with the addition of the Seven 480.

We live in the golden age for performance cars. Most old-school enthusiasts will say that the 70’s were the golden years because big, bad muscle cars and a "No replacement for displacement" attitude. I respectfully disagree, because while old school muscle cars are cool, they never really got any power out of those huge engines. Nowadays, car makers can get huge performance numbers out of engines with the same displacement as a container of milk. A perfect example of this is Caterham . A small British car company, who hangs its hat on making small, ultra lightweight performance cars. People might snicker at a purpose built track car that only has 237 horsepower, but when it flies past you on the track, that snicker will quickly fade. While Caterhams are wonderful cars, they’ve been absent in America. Now, however, Caterham here, in the good ole U.S. of A.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2015 Caterham Seven 480.

As petrol-heads, we all universally love certain things. There is the speed of a fast car , the steering of a proper sports car , and the look of well-designed exotics. We also tend to love the thrill, adrenaline and camaraderie that comes with a track day. In fact, of all the great things that car lovers do, I think the track day may be the single greatest combination of everything that we love. You have the friends, you have beautiful cars to look at, and now thanks to the proliferation of track-day-specific cars, you can have all the speed and handling you want without owning something with a Ferrari badge.

After my recent track experience at the Flyin’ Miata summer camp, I have found myself obsessed with lightweight track-ready cars. Lots of these machines are relatively cheap in terms of a track car, and many of them you can even build yourself with a few friends and few weekends in the garage.

I decided that I would search through the collection of cars currently available and pick out five of the best. I made sure to cover cars from all price brackets, and I included cars that you can build yourself, as well as fully-built turn-key cars that you just pick up and flog immediately. I also wanted to stick to pure track cars, and I stayed away from the track-prepped versions of standard road cars.

Take a peek at my choices and tell me what you guys think. There are lots of other great choices out there, so make sure to let me know which ones you think I should have included. They make the cut next time.

Continue reading to find out what are five of the best track-day cars

Designed by automotive genius Colin Chapman and launched in 1957 under the Lotus badge, the Seven has become one of the most iconic sports cars ever built. Sold as a Lotus until 1972 and as a Caterham since 1973, the tiny, no-nonsense Seven has been offered in many configurations. However, the little roadster has yet to lose its classic charm, despite being fitted with modern technology and increasingly powerful engines. Although the Seven lineup has included at least four to five models over the last decade, Caterham has yet to bring it to the United States on official terms. The drama ended in January 2014, when the Brits reached an agreement with Superformance, and the first U.S.-spec Sevens appeared on the company’s drawing board. In August 2014, Caterham finally announced that the Seven will hit U.S. shores in part-built form.

Two versions are now offered Stateside, being set apart by the number of horses hiding under the hood. The base model is the Seven 360, similar in specifications with the Roadsport 175 currently sold in the United Kingdom. Hopefully we’ll get to drive one and share our impressions soon enough. Meanwhile, make sure you check out the in-depth review below.

Click past the jump to read more about the Caterham Seven 360

When it comes to cars that deliver pure driving pleasure, the Caterham Seven is tough to beat. Maybe this is why the roadster has used the same recipe for more than 50 years. Caterham has been working to improve it since 1973, but we mustn’t forget that Colin Chapman, who built the first Lotus 7 in 1957, penned the Seven. It’s true that the technology behind it has changed over the decades, but Chapman’s iconic "simplify, then add lightness" philosophy remained printed in the Seven’s DNA. Caterham sells a host of iterations nowadays, ranging from the bone-stock 165 model to the lightning-fast 620 R, but, from time to time, it also releases special-edition models that become prized collectibles.

For instance, the Brits created quite a stir with the Seven JPE, a Vauxhall -powered Seven developed with input from F1 driver Jonathan Palmer and launched in 1993. More than 20 years have passed since then, and Caterham turned to another Formula One driver to create a new limited edition track rocket. This time it was Kamui Kobayashi’s turn, a Caterham F1 Team ace that has five Grand Prix seasons to his name.

As with most Caterham special editions, the Kobayashi Seven is gifted with a unique appearance and the latest tricks in carbon-fiber embellishment. It packs the same no-nonsense attitude present in all Caterham Caterham -badged vehicles and it has everything it needs to make a petrol-head grovel at its wheels. There is a catch though; the possibility that we may never see one blow past us on the highway is very low. But you’ll have to join us in our in-depth trip to find out why.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2014 Caterham Seven Kamui Kobayashi Special Edition.

Posted on by Simona  

Jethro Bovingdon from the British magazine EVO wanted to find out what the best track car of 2013, so he made a test that included some of the coolest cars out there: the McLaren 12C GT Can-Am , Caterhan Seven 620R , Radical RXC , BAC Mono , Litchfield Subaru BRZ Spec S , Mini JCW GP , Supercharged Ariel Atom 3.5 and Porsche Cayman S .

The test was made at the Blyton Park and the result seems to be a little bit surprising. Of course, we will not ruin the surprise and will let you watch for yourself to see that car was declared "Track Car of the Year."

All we can tell is that you will be surprise to see that the Cayman S was just a couple of seconds behind the 380-horsepower Radical RXC, which, by the way, weights only 900 kilos (1,984 pounds).

Enjoy the video and trust us it worth spending half an hour watching it!

Posted on by Simona  

Known as the Caterham Seven 165 on the European market, the new Seven 160 is now officially available for order in the UK, and will be put into production in January 2014. The model occupies the entry-level slot in the Caterham Seven lineup, and is priced from £14,995 — about $24,200 at the current exchange rates.

As standard features, the new Seven 160 comes with a set of 14 inches steel wheels combined with a live axle rear suspension. On the inside, the model offers cloth adjustable seats and inertial reel seat belts. For buyers that need a little extra comfort, there are lots of other optional features to choose from.

The new Seven 160 is no powerhouse by any stretch of the imagination, but the 80 ponies that it packs are plenty to get this super-lightweight car to highway speeds in under seven seconds.

Click past the jump to read more about the Caterham Seven 160

Caterham’s F1 team hasn’t had the success it probably expected when it signed up to compete in the world’s most prestigious racing series.

So with little to show for at the track, the Malaysian-owned, UK-based company decided to catch some attention this weekend at the Singapore Grand Prix by bringing a new concept called the AeroSeven Concept that it developed with Renault.

On the back, bulging rear wheel arches create an aggressive shoulder, while the exhaust system, which usually has its pipes on the back, has them exiting out of the sides like a hot rod . It’s strange for a Caterham to be described as such, but one look at the AeroSeven Concept and you’ll immediately know that this isn’t exactly what you’d come to expect from the British marque.

On the inside, this model boasts an F1-inspired steering wheel and a fully active Graphical Display Unit.

In terms of drivetrain, the Caterham AeroSeven Concept makes use of an EU-6 compliant, naturally aspirated engine that produces 237 horsepower. The power runs through a six-cog manual gearbox and out to the rear wheels. Thanks to the combination of traction control — a first on a Caterham model — an a new Caterham Engine Management System, which adds in launch control, this compact race can hit 100 km/h (62 mph) in under four seconds.

What’s more, this is not only a concept model, as Caterham plans to release a production model in early 2016. The production model should carry a similar design and a wider range of engine options. More to come on that later.

Click past the jump to read more about the AeroSeven Concept

Posted on by Simona  

Caterham is teasing for quite some time now a new entry-level version for its Seven lineup. The model, described as a "uncomplicated, easy to run and, most important of all, an intuitive and exciting drive," will be making its world debut in a prototype version at the 2013 Frankfurt Motor Show. Production version will arrive a few months later and will be put on sale in the Spring of 2014.

The new Caterham Seven 165 will be powered by a 660cc, three-cylinder, turbocharged Suzuki K6A engine that, after some improvements made by Caterham will deliver a total of 80 horsepower and a peak torque of 78 pound-feet.

Caterham promised that the new Seven 165 will be priced under €25,000 ($33,000 at the current exchange rates), while the British market will get a Seven 160 version that will be priced at under £17,000 ($26,000 at the current exchange rates).

Click past the jump to read more about the standard Caterham Seven.

The car still looks the same, but rest assured, it’s shape is probably the only thing it has in common with its predecessor: the R500 .

This is the Caterham Seven 620 R, the sports roadster that Caterham is touting as the replacement model of the range-topping R500.

Despite having the similar body character of pretty much everything Caterham has built in recent years, underestimating what the 620 R is capable of is an unwise thing to do. For one, it comes with an improved nose that allows for freer airflow. It also has a new gunmetal chassis, a race-spec cooling system, a De Dion rear suspension, a wide front track and a set of 13-inch alloy wheels wrapped in Avon ZZR tires.

Inside, the modifications were kept to simple yet profoundly indicative to the kind of car this sports roadster is. A "performance-focused instrumentation and ergonomic switchgear" was added, as was a new Q/R race-spec steering wheel, carbon-fiber racing seats, a carbon-fiber dash and carbon-fiber interior panels.

The Caterham Seven 620 R is powered by a 2.0-liter Ford Duratec engine that develops 311 horsepower and 219 pound-feet of torque, making it the most powerful and torque-filled Seven to date. This is enough oomph to hit 60 mph in just 2.8 seconds with a top speed of about 155 mph.

If you’re looking to see this car live and in the flesh for the first time, you should head over to the Goodwood Festival of Speed later this month because that’s when Caterham will officially introduce the Seven 620 R to the world.

The 620 R will hit British showrooms in late 2013 at a base price of £49,995 ($74,272 at the current exchange rates). There is no mention of whether Caterham will release the 620 R in the U.S., but we’re pretty sure it will see our streets at about $65,000. For those that find this price a little too rich, Caterham plans to unveil a less expensive and milder 620 S later in 2013.

Click past the jump to read about the Caterham Seven


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