After a two-year-long development process, Ariel has unveiled their 500bhp V8-engined version of the minimalist Atom 3. The car has a power-to-weight ratio of 909bhp per tonne – which is much better that that of Bugatti’s creation, and is slightly ahead of a GP2 single-seater racing car.
Final testing is still going on with the prototypes, but it’s clear that the V8 Atom can accelerate from 0-60mph in under 2.5sec and from 0-100mph in well under 6.0sec. Ariel seeks to outdo Bugatti Veyron by targeting 2.3sec and 5.4sec respectively.
A US-built, 3.0-litre, 32-valve Hartley V8 engine has been used. This was originally developed from two Suzuki motorcycle engines grafted together, but has seen a lot of development going into it since. The Atom V8 rides on a gold chassis and wheels and every car will have a full set of Ariel’s aerodynamic wings in carbonfibre, which will be optional on lesser models.
Brakes are twin-pot Alcons front and rear, tires are soft-compound, X-rated Toyos, seats and driving position are standard, and a Race Technology configurable instrument pack and has a built-in data logger are included.
Only 25 Atom V8s will be made, which will be on sale early next year. The pricing is set at £150,000.