Some cars are built for luxury, some cars are built for practicality, some cars are built for utility and some cars are built for posing. But there are some cars whose sole purpose is to put a smile on your face. Superlight roadsters do without almost any creature comforts, weather protection or practical considerations, all in the pursuit of the lightest, most nimble chassis possible. Below are ten of the best and most interesting superlight roadsters out there.
Caterham R500 Superlight.
Weighing just 470 kg (1,036 lbs), the lightweight R500 packs a 530bhp per tonne punch from the specially bored 2.0 litre Rover K Series engine. Impressive figures but the real clout comes from the 190lb ft of torque that kicks in at less than 4,000 revs. Caterham R500 Superlight.
Ariel Atom V8.
The Atom V8 is powered by a small V8 engine. With nearly 500 horsepower in a 550 kg (1,213 lb) package the Atom V8 boasts one of the highest power to weight ratios ever for a production car, at over 900 horsepower per ton. Ariel Atom V8.
Brooke 300 Double R.
The Brooke Double R is a sports car which follows the design ethos of most small British sports cars manufacturers, ‘lighter is better’. As such, the minimalist Brooke Double R has no roof, or in fact any creature comforts. It does however have a greater power to weight ratio than a Lamborghini Murcielago. Brooke 300 Double R.
KTM X-Bow R.
The KTM X-BOW R is a new, higher performance variant of the X-BOW. The primary upgrade for the X-BOW R is the engine. It’s the same 2.0 litre unit found in the Audi S3. So that means 300 horsepower is on tap, and it’s all sent to the rear wheels through a six-speed transmission. KTM X-Bow R.
The Donto P1 is a track-focused sports car which was developed in secret for 18 months. The Donto P1 is still technically in the prototype stage, and as such the final drivetrain setup is yet to be confirmed. However the test cars have been using a VW/Audi sourced, 1.8 litre turbocharged engine which produces 180 horsepower. Chances are a similar unit will find its way into the production car. Donto P1.
Elfin Clubman MS8.
The Elfin MS8 Clubman was designed by Elfin Sports Cars and styled by the Holden Design team. This collaboration between the two Australian companies has been an enthusiastic exercise, by car enthusiasts, for car enthusiasts.
The Elfin MS8 Clubman is a powered by an all alloy GM sourced LS1 5.7 litre V8 engine. This unit develops 328 horsepower and 465 Nm of torque in standard trim. Higher powered engines can be installed depending on application. Elfin Clubman MS8.
Grinall Scorpion IV.
The Scorpion IV comprises of a steel space frame chassis and a fibreglass body. Power for the Scorpion IV comes from a Audi sourced 1.8 litre turbocharged petrol engine running through a 6 speed gearbox. The standard engine produces 225bhp, although it can be tuned to provide over 300bhp. Grinall Scorpion IV.
The RoadRazor is a Danish-built, ultra-lightweight, track biased sports car powered by the 1.3 litre 4 cylinder engine from the Suzuki Hayabusa superbike. The resulting 180 horsepower is run through a 6 speed sequential gearbox with steering wheel mounted paddles to the rear wheels. RoadRazer.
Scorpion Motorsports Prodigy.
The base Prodigy model, the P6, is powered by a 600cc Suzuki engine which puts out 125 hp. With this engine the Prodigy can hit 60 mph in 3.3 seconds. Also on offer is the P10 1000cc version which develops 150 hp, and the top spec P13 1300 cc model which produces 185 horsepower. Scorpion Motorsports Prodigy.