New entry-level Caterham gets 660cc turbocharged Suzuki engine

Article by Christian A., on August 6, 2013

Powering the new Caterham Seven entry-level model is a 660-cc, three-cylinder turbocharged engine from Suzuki Motor Corp., which would be the smallest and most efficient mill ever fitted in a Seven. By employing a compact and lightweight turbocharged engine to make it lightweight, the new Seven pays tribute to early models of the iconic Seven.

This downsized engine sends power to the wheels through a compact five-speed transmission, also from Suzuki. Caterham Group’s engineering unit – the Caterham Technology & Innovation (CTI) – has fine-tuned this lightweight gearbox to work in harmony with a re-engineered chassis which suspension system has been heavily revised.

Suzuki is considered as an ideal partner for Caterham in the latter’s quest for the most efficient and lightest Seven ever, as the Japanese carmaker is regarded as an expert in the field of compact and efficient vehicle design.

Moreover, CTI’s powertrain specialists managed to fine-tune Suzuki’s three-cylinder engine to match the attributes of the new Caterham Seven, thereby creating a car that could provide not only great performance on the road, but also enhanced fuel economy and lower emissions.

Graham Macdonald, chief executive of Caterham Cars, remarked that the size of the engine doesn’t matter in creating the right formula for the carmaker’s new entry-level vehicle, the so-called grin factor. He remarked that they intended the new car to offer the joy of driving a Seven distilled form, which resulted to a new entry-level car that isn’t just lighter and cheaper but also more economical and more accessible. MacDonald added that the new Seven is not just easy to run, but also offers a neutral, supple ride. Of course, it boasts of the sporting edge and turn-of-speed typical of a Seven.

Caterham will commence sales of the new Seven in Autumn this year at a price of below £17,000. Deliveries will commence as early as before end of 2013.

On the other hand, Suzuki remarked that the new Seven was an interesting and unique project. He noted that by supplying its powertrain to Caterham, which he described as having a reputation for building lightweight, low-volume sports cars, Suzuki’s sporty image will be enhanced.

Press Release


Caterham Cars’ soon-to-be-released, all-new entry-level Seven will be powered by a 660cc, three-cylinder turbocharged engine manufactured by Suzuki Motor Corporation – the smallest and most efficient engine ever installed in a Seven.

The new vehicle uses 21st-Century engineering to pay homage to early incarnations of the iconic Seven by utilising a super-compact and lightweight turbocharged engine to ‘add lightness’ like no other Seven in recent times.

The ultra-efficient, downsized engine matched with an equally compact Suzuki five-speed gearbox, has been adapted by Caterham Technology & Innovation (CTI) – Caterham Group’s engineering division – to complement a re-engineered chassis, which also harks back to the spirit of former Sevens with major revisions to the suspension layout.

As a renowned specialist in compact and efficient vehicle design, Suzuki’s expertise in the field meant it was the ideal partner for Caterham in achieving its goal of creating the most efficient, lightest Seven ever.

The powertrain specialists at CTI have fine-tuned the engine to suit the highly dynamic Seven, resulting in a car capable of strong performance while delivering vastly improved fuel economy and reduced vehicle emissions.

Caterham Cars CEO, Graham Macdonald, said: “It is not engine size that matters, it is the grin factor that is our barometer and we believe we have got the formula for our new entry-level vehicle just right.

“Suzuki is a leader in producing compact vehicles with extremely efficient engines and that is clearly a shared passion. We needed a particularly light powertrain but it had to be a unit that suited the characteristics inherent to all Sevens – thankfully, after lots of hard work, we have a package that works brilliantly.

“Our intention for this car is to offer the joy of the Seven in distilled form, so the new entry-level car is lighter, cheaper, more economical and more accessible than ever.” Priced under £17,000, the new model will be launched in Autumn this year, with first deliveries expected before the end of 2013. He added: “Unfussy and easy to run, it is designed to give a neutral, supple ride yet carrying the sporting edge and turn-of-speed expected from any Seven. For a sportscar at this price point, it delivers on many fronts and we cannot wait to open the order book.”

Suzuki said: “It has been a very interesting and unique project for us. We trust that supplying our powertrain to Caterham with a respected reputation for building lightweight, low-volume sportscars will enhance our ‘sporty’ brand image.”

Topics: caterham, suzuki, engine

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