- Mar 2, 2008
First Blood: Ariel Atom 500 V8
Oh Dear Lord. That's all that comes to mind when looking at the images that have just surfaced of the new Ariel Atom 500. But maybe that's not the right expression, because this is not the car you'll be driving to church. We can think of other Sunday uses for it, though, ones that will probably have you praying for your life faster and louder than any preacher's sermon.
In fact, the V8-powered Ariel Atom 500 will probably have you doing a lot of things faster and louder than anyone or anything before. Even these details and the photo you see above arrived quicker than we expected after our initial report. Its specs, as well as its styling, would be right at home in a Formula One pit lane: a 2.4-liter V8 with 5-valve cylinder-heads and a supercharger producing over 200 horsepower per liter (!) in a package that weighs in at less than one ton (!!). That means (quick calculation...carry the two) over 1000 hp per ton, nearly twice that of the Bugatti Veyron. To keep it all cooled, earth-bound and visually obscene, the new image released of the Atom 500 reveals a pair of new intakes to feed the intercoolers and some big, race-spec carbon fiber wings. Ariel will be building the beast alongside the Honda-powered versions (which by comparison now seem like go-karts) at its new factory in Somerset, England, from which the first vehicles will be delivered within a couple of months from now, by which time Ariel might let us know how much the bonkers Atom 500 will cost. Our bank managers (and life insurance agents) are standing by.