In 2013, Caterham’s former CEO and COO, Ansar Ali and Mark Edwards, revealed they have founded Zenos Cars, a venture set to develop lightweight sports cars that would rival those of the companies they had left behind. It took them only a few months to launch the E10, a 1,500-pound, 200-horsepower roadster that’s nearly as quick as the latest Lotus Elise Sport 220. About a year later, Zenos came up with a more powerful version named the E10 S. With 2016 around the corner, the British firm has launched yet another iteration of the E10, this time around bearing an "R" badge. And, as you might have already guess, it’s even more powerful and more track-focused than its older siblings.

Although it has a lot in common with the E10 S as far as styling goes, the E10 R is a radical approach of the former, being not only lighter, but significantly more powerful as well. The interior is also bespoke and features standard components you can’t have with the E10 S.

The new Zenos E10 R will initially become available as an exclusive Drive Edition, which boasts added standard features and custom exterior and interior. The sports car will make its global debut at the 2016 Autosport International at the NEC in Birmingham, England. The event takes place between January 14th and 17th. Until that happens, let’s have our first look at Zenos’ new sports car.

Continue reading to learn more about the 2016 Zenos E10 R.

  • 2016 Zenos E10 R
  • Year:
    2016
  • Make:
  • Model:
  • Engine:
    inline-4
  • Horsepower @ RPM:
    350 @ 6000
  • Torque @ RPM:
    350 @ 4000
  • Displacement:
    2.3 L
  • 0-60 time:
    3 sec.
  • Top Speed:
    155 mph
  • Price:
    39995
  • car segment:
  • body style:

Exterior

2016 Zenos E10 R
- image 656994

Styling-wise, the E10 R is essentially identical to its sister models, save for the new livery and the special paint that comes with the exclusive Drive Edition. Like its predecessors, it employs a barchetta-style body made of strong fiberglass panels sculpted into a sporty shape that combined muscular fenders, a long hood with a pointy nose, big rollover hoops, and a no-nonsense rear fascia with large taillights and center-mounted exhaust pipes.

All told, this thing looks like a race car, and even though it is road-legal, its low curb weight and powerful engine makes it suitable for a thrilling weekend at the track.

There is something that’s completely new, however. The E10 R rides on newly developed wheels that are almost 22 pounds (10 kg) lighter than those fitted to the E10 S. As a result, the E10 R is lighter than its siblings, tipping the scales at 1,543 pounds (700 kg).

All told, this thing looks like a race car, and even though it is road-legal, its low curb weight and powerful engine makes it suitable for a thrilling weekend at the track. But more about that in a little while...

Customers who want an E10 R that stands out a bit more when compared to the standard model will have to go with the exclusive Drive Edition. Limited to only 15 units, the package adds a newly developed Charged Graphite exterior color, and Satin Black front and rear splitters and side winglets.

Overall, the E10’s design is far from revolutionary. Automakers have been using this recipe for decades and present-day sports car manufacturers are still offering barchetta-style rockets. Interestingly enough, when Zenos unveiled the original E10, Caterham also showcased the AeroSeven, a concept featuring a similar body style but with a less conventional design combining sharper design cues. The AeroSeven is also slated to become a production car, but Caterham has yet to put it on the assembly. Whether that has something to do with Ali and Edwards leaving the company is still a mystery, but when the AeroSeven comes out, it will become a direct competitor for the E10.

Meanwhile, the R-badged E10 is Zenos’ alternative for the bonkers Lotus 3-Eleven. It’s interesting to note that Ali and Edwards met while working for Lotus back in 1999.

Exterior Dimensions

Wheelbase 2,300 MM (90.55 Inches)
Front track 1,560 MM (61.41 Inches)
Rear track 1,600 MM (62.99 Inches)
Overall length 3,800 MM (149.60 Inches)
Overall width 1,870 MM (73.62 Inches)
Height 1,130 MM (44.48 Inches)
Weight 700 KG (1,543 LBS)

Interior

2016 Zenos E10 R
- image 657001
The E10 R can be had with optional carbon-fiber seats with six-point, race-spec harnesses, and a quick-release steering wheel

The interior is also identical to the previous E10 models, meaning it’s a no-nonsense cockpit consisting of a simple dashboard, a center-mounted display, an Alcantara-wrapped steering wheel, and a pair of racing seats. The carbon-composite cockpit and the steel safety cell are identical to those of the E10 and E10 S, so the similar interior is far from surprising.

Like the E10 S, the E10 R can be had with optional carbon-fiber seats with six-point, race-spec harnesses, and a quick-release steering wheel. Customers can also opt for heated seats.

The carbon seats and quick-release steering wheel comes standard with the Drive Edition package, which also includes a carbon leather interior, an aluminum short-shift gear lever, and a Drive decal scheme.

Drivetrain

2016 Zenos E10 R
- image 656989

Motivation for the E10 R comes from the same 2.3-liter EcoBoost engine used by both the E10 and E10 S. This specific turbocharged four-pot, however, received a bespoke ECU developed by Specialist Components that increased output to 350 horsepower and 349 pound-feet of torque. That’s 100 horsepower and 54 pound-feet more than the E10 S and a whopping 150 horsepower and 194 pound-feet more than the entry-level E10.

The E10 R also benefits from a lighter flywheel assembly and a newly-developed, three-inch exhaust system.

The EcoBoost unit enables the E10 R to hit 60 mph from a standing start in only three seconds

Mated to a six-speed manual transmission, the EcoBoost unit enables the E10 R to hit 60 mph from a standing start in only three seconds. This makes it a full second quicker than the E10 S and 1.5 seconds faster than the E10. Top speed is rated at 155 mph, ten and 20 mph more than the E10 S and E10, respectively.

The sports car rides on a double wishbone suspension system front and rear and adjustable Bilstein dampers. The bespoke wheels, measuring 16 inches at the front and 17 inches to the rear, come wrapped in Avon ZZS tires. Stopping power is provided by updated discs and calipers at the front axle and the same discs and calipers as the E10 S at the rear.

Drivetrain Specifications

Type Turbo charged 4 cylinder
Displacement 2261 cc with 16 valves
Bore x Stroke 87.5 x 94 mm
Output 350 HP @ 6,000 RPM
Torque 350 LB-FT @ 4,000 RPM
Transmission 6-speed transverse

Safety

2016 Zenos E10 R Wallpaper quality
- image 656992

If you’re looking for vehicle that’s packed with airbags and driver assistance system, then the Zenos E10 R is not for you. As its no-nonsense design and low curb weight suggest, this sports car has no such features, with safety being provided only by classic systems such as the safety belts and the rollover hoops. Of course, the light but extremely strong hybrid chassis, the carbon-composite cockpit, and the steel safety cell were also designed to keep occupants safe, but the E10 R isn’t the kind of vehicle that would pass the NHTSA’s crash tests.

Prices

2016 Zenos E10 R
- image 656988

Prices for the Zenos E10 R start from £39,995 (about $60,510), including VAT and excluding delivery. That’s a £10,000 (around $15,130) increase from the E10 S and a £15,000 (about $22,695) increase compared to the base E10. Granted, the E10 R isn’t cheap, but it’s significantly more affordable than its competitors. For reference, the Lotus 3-Eleven retails from £82,000 (around $124,060), while the Caterham 620R fetches at least £49,995 (about $75,640).

The E10 R Drive Edition, to be built in only 15 units, will cost £43,995 (around $66,560) before options.

Like its siblings, the Zenos E10 R won’t be sold in the United States.

Competition

Lotus 3-Eleven

2016 Lotus 3-Eleven Exterior Wallpaper quality
- image 635143

There are plenty of lightweight sports cars you can buy nowadays from Caterham, Ariel or KTM, but the Lotus 3-Eleven is one of the very few examples that feature a barchetta-style design. The 3-Eleven is a more aggressive interpretation of the concept, as it makes use of enhanced aerodynamics, sporting a body kit that includes a bigger front splitter and a massive rear wing. And, even though it tips the scales at 1,984, about 440 more than the E10 R, it has more power at its disposal thanks to a supercharged, 3.5-liter V-6 that cranks out 450 horsepower. The 3-Eleven needs "less than three seconds" to hit 60 mph from a standing start and tops out at more than 174 mph. Lotus also claims that the 3-Eleven can lap the Nurburgring in only 7:09 seconds. Available in two versions, Road and Race, and built in just 311 units, the 3-Eleven costs £82,000 before options (around $124,060).

Find out more about the Lotus 3-Eleven here.

Caterham AeroSeven

2013 Caterham AeroSeven Concept High Resolution Exterior Wallpaper quality
- image 525137

Granted, the AeroSeven is just a concept car as of this writing, but Caterham is hard at work to turn it into a production car. Unveiled in 2013, the AeroSeven concept featured a new styling language that’s unlike anything seen before on a Caterham and a naturally aspirated engine rated at 237 horsepower. Though it’s not exactly fast compared to the E10 R, the Brits will most likely develop several iterations of the model, including one that’s good for more than 300 horsepower. Pricing is obviously a mystery, but if other Caterhams are any indication, a version similar to the Zenos in terms of power and performance will probably fetch more than £50,000 (about $75,645).

Read more about the Caterham AeroSeven concept here.

Conclusion

2016 Zenos E10 R Wallpaper quality
- image 656990

Zenos may not be a strong brand right now, but the fact that the main people behind it, Ansar Ali and Mark Edwards, worked for both Lotus and Caterham for more than a decade speaks volumes of what the E10 R is all about. What makes it even more appealing is that even though its lighter and nearly as powerful as its main competitors, it significantly more affordable, selling for half the price of a Lotus 3-Eleven. Sure, it doesn’t have a Lotus badge and all the heritage that comes with it, but it’s a good start if you’re looking to buy a full-fledged track toy. With a power-to-weight ratio of 500 horsepower per tonne, the E10 R is actually a bargain.

  • Leave it
    • * Not available in the U.S. (yet)
    • * Styling is identical to the less powerful E10 and E10 S
    • * No brand cachet

Press Release

Just one year after its first model entered production, Zenos Cars has confirmed the introduction of its quickest, most exhilarating and most focused car to date: the E10 R. With significantly more power and torque, lighter components and uniquely tuned suspension, the E10 R has been developed to deliver maximum performance and driving thrills both on track and on road.

  • Zenos E10 R provides access to the exclusive ’500 bhp/tonne club’ from just £39,995*
  • Significantly more power, less weight and key upgrades deliver scintillating performance and even greater driving thrills
  • Zenos-tuned turbocharged 2.3-litre EcoBoost engine delivers 350 bhp and 475 Nm
  • With 40% more power than the E10 S, the new model is expected to hit 60 mph in just 3.0 seconds
  • Track-ready with adjustable suspension, uprated brakes and 6-speed transmission with race harnesses
  • Limited-run E10 R Drive Edition features distinctive new Charged Graphite colour, black anodised chassis and additional equipment as standard
    2016 Zenos E10 R Wallpaper quality
- image 656990

High performance, superb responsiveness
The pinnacle of the E10 range receives a new powerplant – the Ford-sourced turbocharged 2.3-litre EcoBoost engine, which uses a bespoke ECU developed with partner Specialist Components to deliver 40 per cent more power (350 bhp) and 19 per cent more torque (475 Nm / 349 lb.ft). Thanks to a power-to-weight figure of 500 bhp/tonne, the Zenos E10 R delivers truly astonishing performance. Zero to 60 mph (97 km/h) is expected to take just 3.0 seconds and a top speed of 155 mph (249 km/h) is achievable.

The Zenos E10 R also provides great driving flexibility, as over 450 Nm is available between 3,000 and 6,000 rpm. This consistently high torque, combined with outstanding traction, allows the E10 R to excel when overtaking or powering out of corners.

The engine’s responsiveness is further heightened by a lightened flywheel assembly and newly-developed three-inch diameter exhaust system. The latter also delivers a purposeful exhaust note, which leaves no uncertainty about the elevated levels of performance on offer.

Inside, the shortened gear lever of the E10 R makes rapid gear changes with the standard six-speed transmission easy, adding pleasure to road driving and aiding drivers in search of quicker lap times on the track. Comfort and support are offered by the standard twin-skin composite seats, which are fitted with four-point racing harnesses to enhance safety.

2016 Zenos E10 R
- image 656991

In keeping with its track and fast road brief, the braking performance of the E10 R has also been uprated, with ventilated discs and uprated four-pot callipers fitted as standard. The dynamic abilities of the E10 and E10 S have been universally praised, and the E10 R builds on these with detailed changes to spring and damper rates.

Advanced lightweight construction
The E10 R reinforces the lightweight philosophy of Zenos Cars, as demonstrated by with the new wheels of the E10 R, which together are almost 10 kg lighter than those fitted to the E10 S. The reduction in unsprung mass results in even more precise wheel control, increasing grip and body control.

Like its stablemates, the E10 R is built around the extremely strong yet lightweight Zenos hybrid chassis and has a dry weight of just 700 kg. The carbon composite cockpit and steel safety cell are identical to those of the E10 and E10 S, as are the race car-like inboard springs and dampers that connect directly to the front of the spine – protecting them from damage and reducing unsprung mass. The E10 R incorporates adjustable suspension, allowing track day drivers to tune behaviour to suit track layout and driving style.

The dimensions of the E10 R are identical to those of its sister models, giving it a compact form with excellent visibility, allowing it be precisely placed. Outside, the new model also utilises removable body panels made of strong, resilient GRP that can easily be replaced should damage occur.

In keeping with the Zenos philosophy that its cars should offer driving thrills and affordability, the Zenos E10 R is priced from just £39,995*.

The E10 R Drive Edition
The Zenos E10 R will initially be available as an exclusive Drive Edition, named after the company’s design partners, who created the unmistakable form of the E10. The E10 R Drive Edition will be immediately recognisable, thanks to the unique black anodised finish of its aluminium spine, visible from inside the cabin, Satin Black front and rear splitters and side winglets, and Satin Black interior trim. Optional on the E10 R, and standard on the E10 R Drive Edition, is a newly developed colour that hints at the new model’s serious performance credentials: Charged Graphite.

Additional equipment also standard on the Drive Edition includes; one-way adjustable dampers, quick-release steering wheel and uprated master cylinders.

The E10 R Drive Edition also boasts an upgraded interior specification, with six-point harnesses, carbon leather trim and carbon seats all fitted as standard equipment. Just 15 examples of the E10 R Drive Edition will be available, at the price of £43,995*.

2016 Zenos E10 R Wallpaper quality
- image 656992

January debut at Autosport International
The Zenos E10 R makes its international debut at Autosport International 2016 show (14-17 January 2016 at the NEC, Birmingham), reflecting its brief to deliver maximum performance and driving thrills on the track and on the road.

Commenting on the new model, Mark Edwards, Founder and Managing Director of Zenos Cars, said: "As the fastest and most focused car we have yet created, the Zenos E10 R is a hugely exciting stage in the development of our company’s story. Yet it is also a logical progression, building on the strengths of the E10 and the E10 S to deliver even greater driving thrills.

"Thanks to its advanced architecture and natural balance, it was always clear that the E10 could handle even more power than the ’S’ offers. Yet it is vital that any new Zenos model features the Zenos hallmark of affordability, and the E10 R is perhaps the most accessible way to join the 500 bhp/tonne car club."

Chris Weston, Head of Development at Zenos Cars, added: "The development of the E10 R was not just about making it extremely fast and even more responsive – we’ve worked hard to ensure that the driving pleasure that lies at the heart of the Zenos experience has also been turned up to the next level."

Matt Windle, Operations Director at Zenos Cars, concluded: "It’s always been important to Zenos that the cars we produce are affordable to own and enjoy. The 2.3-litre EcoBoost engine from Ford was therefore a natural choice for the E10 R, delivering low ownership costs as well as thunderous performance."

Orders are now being taken for the E10 R, which sits at the top of a three-model E10 family. The range begins with the 200 bhp E10, priced from £24,995*, and also includes the 250 bhp turbocharged E10 S, priced from £29,995*.

* Prices include 20% VAT and IVA test fees. Prices exclude delivery and ’On the road’ (OTR) costs.

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