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Saturday, November 29, 2014

Caterham Plans Three New Sports Cars for 2015




caterham seven photo

Minimalist sports cars don’t get much better than the Seven. Having existed in one form or another since Lotus built the first one in 1957, the Seven has earned itself a spot in the annals of sports cardom.

Now, UK-based Caterham is simplifying the lineup with an easier understood power-to-weight ratio nomenclature and a trio of three new Seven models. However, to those of us in the US, new’ might not exactly be the right word.

photo of US caterham seven

According to Autocar, Caterham’s UK range will retain its low and high-end Sevens, the entry-level 160 (80 horsepower) and the screaming 310-horsepower 620R, and fill in the gap with three new models.

 Although unconfirmed, it’s likely two of those models will be the US-spec Seven 360 (180 horsepower) and Seven 480 (237 horsepower) cars, replacing the UK’s middle-of-the-pack Supersport (140/180 horsepower) and Superlight (210 horsepower) models.

 The third model could very well be the US-spec Seven 280 (140 horsepower), swapping in for the Roadsport (125/140 horsepower) configuration.

The new models are pegged to adopt styling changes to go along with their power upgrades as well, though nothing quite as extreme as the edgy Caterham AeroSeven concept.

 All five models will be subject to the addition of two optional ‘R’ and ‘S’ power packages, with the ‘S’ treatment the more extreme of the pair.

caterham seven new models US photo

The raucous SP/300.R track car looks to remain unchanged, as does the F1 suspension-toting CSR, although we still probably won’t see that one in the US. The Caterham Seven starts out at $33,900 in the US market with powertrain options not added in – a factor that makes the UK-spec three-cylinder Seven 160 an even more desirable model at just £15,000 ($23,000).