Caterham R500 - Click above for high-res image gallery

The same things that makes the cars from British boutique automaker Caterham sporty and fun to drive could also potentially make them excellent choices for alternative powertrains. There's plenty of available real estate under the hood, a simple rear-wheel drive chassis and, above all else, a distinct absence of weight.

As such, it's not surprising to hear that Caterham is looking into both hybrid and fully electric drivetrains. According to Autocar, Caterham chief Ansar Ali said at the Tokyo Motor Show that his company would unveil an eco-friendly prototype before the end of the year. Both the hybrid and electric powertrains will be sourced from unnamed manufacturers.

Further, Caterham is planning a one-make race series in 2011 to show off its new green sportscar, which may well be followed up in 2012 with a production model if sufficient demand is found. Performance will reportedly to be just as sprightly in EV form as it is with the firm's normal gasoline-fed engines.


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[Source: Autocar]