CATERHAM LAUNCHES LIMITED EDITION RETRO RACER - THE SEVEN SUPERSPRINT
•New limited edition Seven unveiled at Goodwood Revival
•Retro-soaked, race-inspired Seven SuperSprint starts at £29,995 OTR
•Only 60 limited editions on sale from today
•The vintage racing inspired Seven offers 95bhp and is available in six different paint schemes
•Both single-seater and twin-seater versions available
•See the SuperSprint in action here: https://youtu.be/brn-Hk3Ocv0
•Find out more about the Seven SuperSprint click here
Caterham has unveiled the new, limited edition Seven SuperSprint at this weekend's Goodwood Revival as part of its 60th-anniversary celebrations.
Reflecting the anniversary, 60 SuperSprints destined for the ÚK and European markets go on sale today, completing the pair of special models that have topped and tailed the anniversary year. The similarly retro Seven Sprint was launched at the same event 12 months ago, wîth all 60 cars sold within a week, quickly becoming the fastest selling Caterham Seven to date.
Offering the ultimate in gentleman racer style, alongside the hearty power of its 95bhp Caterham Works Racing-tuned, three cylinder engine, the Seven SuperSprint is as at home on the road as it is on the circuit.
A unique Brooklands windscreen, quilted and stitched seats trimmed in Innes tan Scottish Muirhead leather, a wooden-rimmed sports §teering wheel, and 1960s-style racing livery ensures that the driving experience is nothing short of sepia-toned race nostalgia.
The Seven SuperSprint is available in six paint schemes, all featuring their own signature colour and named after classic race circuits including Aintree (green wîth orange noseband), Hockenheim (silver wîth red noseband) and Imola (red wîth white noseband).
With 1960's race style front of mind, Caterham has also created a single-seater option, which comes complete wîth a tonneau cover for the more serious pilot lòòking to strip out as much weight as possible.
Graham Macdonald, Caterham Chief Executive Officer, said: 'Motorsport and the purist thrill of driving a lightweight race car is in the Caterham Seven's DNA and are elements that run like a thread through every car we build today, 60 years after the first Seven was made.
'We started our 60th anniversary year wîth the glorious throwback Sprint – aimed at the more discerning chap or lady driver. As we approach the end of our year of celebration, it makes perfect sense that the car bookending the celebrations is a racer of a similar vein.'
Simon Lambert, Chief Motorsport and Technical Officer, added: 'Like the Sprint, this is unquestionably the Seven Caterham would have developed if we had been here in the mid-sixties – and it benefits from being injected wîth the passion and power of the modern incarnation. The visual appeal of our new baby is only outclassed by a driving experience that puts you straight behind the goggles of Stirling Moss and Innes Ireland.'Source - Caterham
The Lotus Seven was the successor to the Lotus Mark 6 and was in production from 1957 through 1972. It was introduced to the public at the Earls Court Motor Show in London in October of 1957. Colin Chapman, the founder of Lotus, had designed six other Lotus's; this vehicle being his seventh. Part of the vehicles success was its light-weight construction and powerful engines resulting in great performance, handling, and response times. It went from zero to sixty in around 5 seconds and had a top speed of about 100 miles per hour. Chapman used to refer to the vehicle as a 'four wheeled motorbike'.
There were few amenities, the seats were not adjustable and there were no doors. The car sits very low to the ground. While sitting in traffic, the driver measures about as high as most vehicles wheel-wells. The front suspension was an independent A-arm while the rear was a live axle located by twin parallel trailing arms and a diagonal link. The body was constructed of a steel tube frame with aluminum bodywork and fiberglass fenders. Cast-iron drum brakes were used to stop the vehicle. Initially a worm-and-nut steering was used but was quickly replaced with rack-and-pinion.
The cost of owning the first sevens was £587 (around $1640). They featured a Ford engine producing 40 horsepower and a Ford gearbox. The first few years of its development saw improvements to the suspension, transmission, and engine capacity.
Series IF, introduced in 1957, had a length of 129 inches and a width of 53 inches. In 1958, the IC Series was introduced and had a length of 132 inches and a width of 58.30 inches. The engine was a Coventry Climax FWA 1098 light-alloy, four cylinder power-plant that produced 75 horsepower. The transmission was the BMC Austin A30 4-speed manual with optional close-ratio gears. The 1A AWD America Series was introduced at the close of 1959. 37 horsepower was ascertained from the BMC A-Series 948 cc. four-cylinder engine. The United States versions were dubbed the Seven America and were equipped with Austin-Healey Sprite engines outputting 43 horsepower. In 1960 the Series 2A and 2F were introduced. These 2A's featured a BMC A-Series engine and a BMC Sprite 4-speed manual gearbox. The American versions were given a 948 cc. or 1098 cc. engine. The 2F Series featured a 100E Ford engine and Ford 3-speed gearbox. This was later exchanged in favor of the Ford 105E 997 cc engine and 4-speed Ford Anglia gearbox.
Caterham obtained the rights to build the Seven after Lotus had ceased production. They continue to produce the vehicle to this day but added the 'Super' to the front of the name. Not much has changed since the vehicles inception except that it has grown in size and there have been suspension, frame, and other mechanical enhancements. Disc brakes were placed on all four wheels. The suspension was modified to use a double wishbone in the front and a De Dion in the rear. The transmission has been modified to include a six-speed close ratio gearbox. A catalytic converter can now be found attached to the underbelly of the vehicle.
In 1999, the Caterham R500 was introduced. With a zero-to-sixty time of 3.4 seconds and a top speed of 146 miles-per-hour, it is by far the quickest and fastest of the Sevens.
The Super Seven SV is the largest of all the Seven's. Its width was extended by four inches and the length was given three inches. It is powered by a Ford Zetec engine that is capable of producing 147 horsepower. The zero-to-sixty miles per hour is achieved in just 4.6 seconds.
The Seven has been so successful in racing that in 1976 it was banned because it was too fast. Caterham has since created its own racing league giving the drivers an opportunity to prove their skills on the race track.
During its forty-year life span, multiple engines and various mechanical configurations have been used. The key to its success is the fun-factor. It is a responsive and sporty vehicle. It has stayed street legal because of its kit-car status, a loop-hole that has continued the allure and enjoyment of this vehicle even to this day.
By Daniel Vaughan | Sep 2006