If you believed that the Atom V8 500 was the best Ariel could do, well you were wrong. The company is preparing a limited edition Atom Mugen that has made its world debut at the UK’s Autosport Show in January 2011. The model was built as a celebration of the Atom’s 10th anniversary and will be limited to only 10 units. Each of these units will feature different livery and will have a numbered plate signed by Ariel and Mugen.

The future Atom Mugen, as you might have guessed, will be developed in cooperation with the Japanese tuner, Mugen, who is no stranger when it comes to developing tuning packages for a number of Honda models.

Together, the two companies were able to build an Ariel Atom that’s so deliciously powerful, 10 models feels like it’s not enough to satiate the craving of Atom fans all over the world.

Details for the 2012 Ariel Atom Mugen after the jump

  • 2012 Ariel Atom Mugen
  • Year:
  • Make:
  • Model:
  • Engine:
    2.0-liter K20Z Type R naturally-aspired engine
  • Horsepower @ RPM:
    270 @ 8,600 rpm
  • Energy:
  • 0-60 time:
    2.9 sec.
  • Top Speed:
    0 mph
  • Price:
  • car segment:

Exterior and Interior

2012 Ariel Atom Mugen Exterior
- image 389212

Apart from the standard features that come with the regular Atom models, the Atom Mugen will include a custom paint livery and badging that will be unique to each of the 10 models. There will also be four pot lightweight calipers and ventilated front and rear discs. At the interior, the Atom Mugen will come with a multi-function LCD screen that conveniently sits in front of the driver while displaying all the pertinent information the driver needs, including gearshift indicators and lap times.

Last but certainly not least, each of the 10 models will have their own unique numbered plaque that will be signed by Mugen and Ariel engineers responsible for the development and build of the Atom Mugen.


2012 Ariel Atom Mugen Drivetrain
- image 389211

The Atom will use a 2.0-liter K20Z Type R naturally-aspired engine borrowed from the Honda Civic Type R, but tricked out by Mugen to deliver 270 horsepower at 8,600 RPM, a bump up of 25 horsepower from the Atom 245. Performance numbers for the Atom Mugen equate to a 0-60 mph time of just 2.9 seconds and a top speed of around 150 mph.

Mr. Hiroki Toyoda, Vice President of Mugen Euro, said "The Type R Honda is the best 2.0 liter normally aspirated engine available. We have put our experience and know how to release even more power from the engine and we’re delighted to see our engine in the Ariel Atom.


2012 Ariel Atom Mugen Exterior
- image 389210

We’ve already touched on the fact that only 10 of these rockets will be made by Ariel and Mugen. Unfortunately, one of them has already been sold, leaving the rest of us with nine models to fight over. Each one will cost £49,740 including VAT. That’s about $78,700 based on current exchange rates.


2012 Ariel Atom Mugen High Resolution Exterior
- image 389331

One competitor that should give the Ariel Atom Mugen a run for its money is the KTM X-Bow. Despite vastly different aesthetic styling, both the X-Bow and Atom have similar performance specs that aren’t that far from each other. Whereas the Atom has a 2.0-liter K20Z Type R naturally-aspired engine that produces 270 horsepower - thanks to Mugen - the KTM X-Bow counters with an Audi-sourced 2.0-liter TFSI DOHC engine that produces around 240 horsepower.

  • Leave it
    • Limited stock means harder to find
    • A bit expensive for a track-day sports car
    • Purely for thrill-seeking purposes
2012 Ariel Atom Mugen Exterior
- image 389213
What do you think?
Show Comments


  (395) posted on 06.26.2012

Seriously, I’m not informed about the background of Ariel, but with this Atom Mugen, it’s like declaring that they are more professionals than giant car companies.

  (530) posted on 04.27.2012

I don’t know much when it comes to this brand, but this Ariel Atom Mugen’s style certainly allured me.

  (600) posted on 10.6.2011

I’m not totally familiar with the idea and configuration of the most roadster, but just seeing the exterior and interior my mind said it is interesting and accountable.

  (347) posted on 08.22.2011

The question would be if they are available in the market or just for exclusivity. The lighter weight of the car has increased the speed performance of the car.

  (517) posted on 08.22.2011

The new gen Atom actually develops from its dull gaze to a hard hitting-look. It seems there a lot of racing bred vehicle that were born recently.

  (428) posted on 07.27.2011

I think it will fly if you drive this one having a very light weight but very fast. Too bad
it is a only a limited edition. I thought, Ariel will never create another Atom car after their
first edition Atom V8 500. Good job for Ariel.

  (4) posted on 07.26.2011

270 horsepower for a car that weighs under 640 kg Nice

  (444) posted on 03.28.2011

The Atom really innovates! I have seen its predecessor and comparing the two, this one looks better when it comes to performance and styling. I wonder if KTM comes up with a newer design.

  (228) posted on 03.23.2011

I would say that new gen Atom really evolves from its boring look before to its aggressive design now. I can see a lot of updates from its performance to its styling. I think compare to KTM, this one is far better!

  (410) posted on 03.18.2011

Most probably that is a human sized vehicle! KTM and Atom have different specs and performance of the engine. Even so, aesthetically, the styling of the Atom is superb!

  (364) posted on 03.17.2011

is it a human size car? it look small though. But i think this one look more clean compared to KTM. So are they planning to join this car on racing track? I guess it would be more useful if they did that and not only for thrill-seeking purposes.

  (379) posted on 03.15.2011

I bet Ariel is so lucky for having a partnership with the Mugen! 640 kg? Isn’t it heavy?
How does it manage to have an speed of 270 hp on that weight?

  (387) posted on 03.10.2011

This is weird making a special edition for mid size level car! It will cost more than 300 as well.

  (410) posted on 01.27.2011

The Honda gearbox in the Atom is great, unlike the VW derived Audi gearbox in the KTM. I was pretty quite disappointed with the Xbow gearbox tbh.

  (570) posted on 01.27.2011

Don’t worry its a road car do a turbo on it then really go!

  (612) posted on 01.18.2011

well i guess we have our own taste about cars. i like the GT-R and the m3 GTS. but somethings missing.. where is the Lotus evora?

  (309) posted on 01.17.2011

that’s great dude, also good thing that they used a mugen engine, better sound, better quality and of course better performance for a car like this.

  (291) posted on 01.17.2011

when i saw this one, I remember my highscool days, I used to build my own bike from scrap. (I’m not saying that this is a crap)what I’m saying is my full attention and dedication is there with my bike.. what i mean is they fully focused on building this one and they had really given a dedication and hard work for this baby come into life.

  (477) posted on 01.16.2011

Impressive, good thing that the fitted this atom with a 2.0 R engine of honda. well for sure this is another Iconic vehicle on track. unfortunately you can drive this baby on good conditions and good road.

  (647) posted on 12.27.2010

Further frippery will include a special coat of paint and a plaque proclaiming its special place in the order along with the signatures of the Mugen and Ariel technicians who built it (just one of each will have their hands on the machine).

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