No longer do you need big V8, V10, or V12 engines to produce a potent performance car, and new technology is allowing niche automakers to do more with less. English sports car legend Caterham has announced its new entry-level track car, the Caterham Seven will make due with a 660cc turbocharged three-banger from Suzuki.
According to Caterham, it is the smallest, cleanest, and most-efficient motor ever put into a Caterham, and the new lightweight Seven design pays homage to the origins of the English sports car specialist. Caterham got its start buying the rights from Lotus to reproduce the popular Lotus Seven, and some models of the Seven can weigh as little as 1,100 pounds.
It is this light weight, along with its affordable price and unparalleled handling, that made the Seven an iconic car. The new entry-level Seven model will be priced at $26,000, and will use a 660 cc Suzuki three-cylinder turbo engine, backed by a five-speed manual transmission. These engines are commonly used to Suzuki’s teeny tiny kei cars, though in the Seven they should provide ample performance.
Specs haven’t been released, but expect anywhere from 90 to 110 horsepower, as well as a re-designed steering and suspension system that will bring old school handling back to the Caterham lineup. I’d love to see the fuel economy specs on the Seven as well. I’d love to line up the 1.0 liter Ford EcoBoost Formula racer against a Seven for a day at the track.
Affordable. Fun. Efficient. Caterham gets 21st century performance and the “less is more” philosophy.