Caterham, the well-known British sports cars manufacturer, unveiled today its first ever sports prototype racing car, dubbed Caterham-Lola SP/300.R, at the 2011 Autosport International Show. The car was created in partnership with British engineering brand, Lola Cars and features Caterham’s new supercharged version of the Ford Duratec 2.0-liter power plant, expected to deliver around 300bhp. According to the manufacturer, the car is in the final stages of development of the powertrain and handling characteristics of the car and promises to build only 25 units each year. Thanks to the Duratec engine, the car, which has a total weight of sub-600 kg, is able to sprint from 0 to 60 mph (96 km/h) in just 2.5 seconds and will have a top speed of around 170 mph or 273 km/h.
The car has a power-to-weight ratio of 500bhp-per-tonne, excluding the driver. Regarding the chassis, the new Caterham-Lola SP/300.R uses an aluminum tub with a longitudinally mid-mounted engine, coupled to a stress-bearing rear transaxle. Moreover, the car comes with a forward splitter and large rear wing in order to reduce lift, while a flat underbody maximises ground effect benefits. A broad aero platform generates optimal downforce and balance, while the aerodynamic performance is fine-tuned by ducts and dive-planes. The Caterham-Lola SP/300.R is priced at £60,000, excluding local taxes.
“Motorsport is not only part of the history of Caterham, it’s been the lifeblood running through the character of our vehicles – race cars for the road,” explains Ansar Ali, managing director of Caterham Cars. “Today, racing is not only the heartbeat of the business, it’s an intrinsic part of our fabric both here and abroad and the SP/300.R represents the next logical step in the development of our product offering.”