No Manual Chevy C8 Corvette Means Spending $100,000 on the American-Built 2020 Saleen S1 Might Not Be a Bad Proposition
The 2020 Chevy C8 Corvette is the first Corvette offered without a manual transmission. This is bad news for old-school enthusiasts, but Chevy has solid arguments for the drop. The C8 Corvette would need a bespoke transmission that’s not worth the hassle given that sales of manual Corvettes dropped dramatically in recent years. But if you can’t stand the idea of an automatic Corvette, the Saleen S1 is an alternative you should consider.
2019 Saleen S1
Established in 1983, Saleen quickly became one of America’s most renowned Ford Mustang tuners. Already a highly praised company in the 1990s, Saleen became a full-fledged automaker by launching the S7 in 2000. One of the first hand-built American supercars, the S7 went on to become a legend and survived for no fewer than nine years on the market. Once it discontinued the S7, Saleen went back to modifying muscle cars, providing upgrades not only for the Mustang but for the Chevy Camaro and Dodge Challenger (and even the Tesla Model S) too. But it seems that Saleen is now ready to launch its second original design. It’s called the S1, and it was introduced at the 2017 Los Angeles Auto Show.
The small sports car is a surprising appearance. Not only it came out of nowhere, but it also arrived at a time when Saleen barely emerged from years of struggling with financial difficulties. And the California-based firm has big plans with the S1, hoping to sell more than 1,500 units a year in the U.S. alone. The two-door is also built from scratch by the American company, which is a big feat given that Saleen was almost bankrupt a few years ago. But it’s worth mentioning that Saleen isn’t alone in this project. The S1 is actually made by Jiangsu Saleen Automotive Technologies Group, a company based in China that is building a billion-dollar manufacturing facility in the country.
Saleen also revealed that the S1 project began a few years ago when the firm purchased the tooling for the Artega GT, a German sports car designed by Henrik Fisker in the late 2000s. Launched in 2009, the GT was short-lived, being discontinued when Artega went bankrupt in 2012. However, the S1 isn’t based on the GT. Saleen found that an update wasn’t feasible and designed a new coupe from scratch.
Continue reading to find out more about the Saleen S1.
The Saleen S1 is a Big Beast in a Little Body
Seventeen years ago, the Saleen S7 burst into our lives as a hand-built, high-performance American supercar. It came from the mind of Steve Saleen, who made his fame designing six generation’s worth of Saleen-tuned Mustangs. Fast forward to this year and history has repeated itself. Saleen is back in the spotlight with a new supercar. It’s called the Saleen S1, and it’s the two-seater supercar we never knew we wanted…until now.
The Saleen S1 Can be Yours for $1,000 Deposit; $100,000 Total; Deliveries Start in Mid-2018
As far as car designers go, Steve Saleen is a legend among legends. The man responsible for six generations of Saleen Mustangs is back in the game with a new offering. It’s called the S1 supercar, and it’s a furious little piece that packs a walloping 450-horsepower on a 2,685-pound carbon fiber body. The S1 made its presence known at the 2017 Los Angeles Auto Show, and it’s the latest masterpiece from a mind that’s responsible for giving us more Saleen Mustangs than our fragile hearts could handle. Oh, and he’s also the architect of the S7 supercar, the 550-horsepower supercar that blew everyone’s mind back in 2001. The S1 is the latest in a long line of iconic builds, and it’s arrived to take money out of our wallets. Are your bank accounts ready?
Saleen Teases the New S1 Just Days Before its Debut
Saleen has released a teaser shot of the new S1, the car that will propel the brand into the compact sports car market. The image shows the rear end which rides on the fine line between elegant and sexy. It sports a single taillight that wraps around the rear end, with a spoiler of the same size sitting upon the rear deck. Very little outside of this can be made out from the darkened teaser shot, but you can clearly tell that the rear haunches or extremely muscular and there are very sharp body lines below the waste. Clearly, this will be one attractive and provocative proposition to the compacts sports car market. Want to know more? Keep reading to get the full scoop.
Saleen to Bring New S1 Sports Car to L.A Auto Show
Founded in 1983, Saleen is mostly known for creating various tuning packages for the Ford Mustang. More recently though, Steve Saleen began modifying Dodge Challengers and Chevrolet Camaros too, and even launched an upgrade for the Tesla Model S electric sedan. But Saleen also built a supercar. Launched in 2000 as the S7 it became one of America’s iconic supercars and received a lot of praise for its impressive performance and that it went on to win a few important racing championships. But despite having a few successful decades, Saleen had to cope with severe financial issues in the 2010s. A merger with Chinese firm Jiangsu followed, which expanded Saleen’s presence in markets outside the U.S. Now, the California-based brand announced its first original design since the S7. It’s called the S1 and will make its U.S. debut at the 2017 Los Angeles Auto Show.
Unveiled in China earlier this month, the S1 is significantly smaller than the S7 and gains Saleen access to the small sports car market. But despite being an original design on the outside, the S1 is actually based on the Artega GT, which was produced between 2009 and 2012. The German automaker went bankrupt in 2012 and Saleen bought the rights to the GT’s platform. Interestingly enough, the underpinnings are actually based on the ones that Lotus developed for the Evora in the late 2000s. Just like the S7, the S1 uses a Ford engine, this time around a 2.3-liter EcoBoost unit similar to that found in the Mustang EcoBoost and Focus RS. The engine was tuned to generate 450 horsepower and 425 pound-feet of torque.
There’s no word on U.S. availability, but Jiangsu Saleen plans to build some 150,000 units per year starting mid-2018, when its factory in Rugao, China will be completed. An electric version of the S1 is also in the books, but no information has been released as of this writing. We should find out more at the 2017 Los Angeles Auto Show later this year, so make sure you stick around for an update.
Saleen Automotive was founded in 1983 by Steve Saleen, who recently regained control of the company, and everyone knows it as the American company that builds some of the sickest cars in America. Now, just in time for its 30th anniversary, the company announced the launch of the special-edition lineup that it has dubbed the SA-30.
The SA-30 can be based on one of three different Saleen models: the 302 Mustang, the 620 Camaro, or the 570 Challenger. The SA-30 will be limited to only 30 units — 10 based on each model — and they will start from $95,000.
According to Saleen, despite the special edition using three different platforms, it will "share a common theme: Saleen Racing Heritage." Also, the new SA-30 "will capture the essence of Saleen style and performance that will truly place elegance and power in the hands of the very few."
The new SA-30 offers a nice list of updates to both the exterior and the interior, including a series of exclusive features and a very powerful engine under the hood.
Click past the jump to read more about the new Saleen SA-30.
It’s hard to believe that it has been almost exactly four years to the day since the 2008 Saleen S5S Raptor Concept made its public debut at the New York Auto Show. It went into the show strictly as a concept, but that didn’t stop hopefuls claiming that it could have hit the market soon after. We never imagined reporting on it again four years later, but here we are.
Since the 2008 New York Auto Show, Saleen has faced its fair share of controversy and cut-backs, as the once prominent Ford Mustang tuner went quiet before announcing that it was solely focusing on parts and accessories. Thankfully however, with Steve Saleen now being able to use the Saleen name in future models after a bitter legal dispute, the 63 year-old has announced that he has ambitious plans to create a successor to the incredible Saleen S7.
Saleen hinted that a future model could be based heavily upon the S5S Raptor, and we don’t blame him, as its styling looks as futuristic and aggressive as ever. Sure a few tweaks here and there would have to be made to the external styling, but we don’t see why Saleen would have to mess with the stunning looks too much.
While speaking to Autoweek, Saleen stated “That’s still a part of our plan. The S5S is still in our planning." We’re honestly not sure why Steve has decided to come out now and speak about this possible supercar, but we’re over the moon as it could mean yet another American-born car to compete with the likes of the equally impressive SSC Tuatara and Hennessey Venom GT.
When the S5S Raptor was originally introduced, it featured a 5.0-liter V8 engine pumping out an incredible 650HP and 600lb-ft of torque. As a result, it could launch to 62 mph in just 3.2 seconds and continue accelerating to in excess of 200 mph, and those performance times are still mighty impressive nowadays.
It’s unclear just when the S5S Raptor could hit the production line, but don’t expect any more than 20 or 30 to be produced with each likely to cost well over $1 million.
Steve Saleen can never keep his hands off of Mustangs, so its no surprise that he’s already announced plans for the 2010 Mustang.
Then again, the engine modifications won’t be too hard because the mechanical bits of the new Mustang are just a carryover from the previous model. So the 4.6-liter V8 SMS has been working on may have already been in development for quite some time by now. The 2010 Signature Series SMS 460 Mustang will make between 475 to over 650 hp and go on sale in the second quarter of 2009.
The biggest changes to watch out for on SMS car will be how they will handle aerodynamic upgrades to the 2010 ’Stang’s body.
Press release after the jump.
Steve Saleen announced today pricing on the street legal SMS 570 Challenger and SMS 570X Challenger, models based on the 2009 Dodge Challenger R/T platform. The MSRP’s for the 2009 SMS 570 Challenger and SMS 570X Challenger are targeted to start at $60,000 to $70,000 respectively with production commencing in 2008.
Both models will feature a SMS designed and engineered SMS 296 Supercharger bolted to a 5.7L Hemi, with power ratings from 500 to over 700 horsepower.
Press release after the jump
The Saleen S5S Raptor Concept won’t make its official debut until tomorrow, but here are a few more details and images about it. The S5S Raptor will go into production by 2010 and pricing will start from $185,000.
The Saleen S5S Raptor will be powered by a supercharged 5.0-liter engine that delivers 650 hp and 630 lbs-ft of torque to the rear wheels through a six-speed manual gearbox; it can run on E85 ethanol and is capable of jetting from zero to 60 mph in 3.2 seconds, with a top speed in excess of 200 mph.