Occasionally we learn about a new car manufacturer starting up in Mexico, but usually the country's most significant involvement in the auto industry is relegated to building vehicles and parts for other auto companies. RON Automóviles de México hopes to change that with its new line of sports cars. The flagship model, the RXX, resembles an Ariel Atom with bodywork, while the R7 was inspired by the Lotus 7.
The Bowler EXR S is a purpose-built SUV based on Land Rover bones with a 550-horsepower supercharged V8 designed to tackle off-road rallying events like the Paris-Dakar. The Caterham Seven Supersport is a feather-light track day weapon, purposely created to out-hustle just about anything on a winding race circuit. If asked to pick one of the as the fastest around a handling circuit in the UK, the smart money is clearly on the racing Caterham. Right?
The English are mad. And we know this for two reasons: one, they admit it; two, it's true. If more proof is needed, a video of Evo magazine's features editor, Henry Catchpole, sliding a Caterham Supersport up a French mountain in the snow should be enough. And the spindly car is missing its top. And he's missing his hat.
Graham Nearn helped develop and sell the Lotus 7, creating Caterham Cars in 1959 as a retail outlet for the lightweight roadster. After having seen the car through its years of broadcasting fame on the BBC show The Prisoner (that's Nearn on the right with Prisoner star Patrick MacGoohan), he then saved the 7 from the death dealer's axe when Lotus wanted to bury the car in 1973.
To some, the Lotus 7 was the quintessential British sportscar. Its tires are pushed out to the corners to deliver the ultimate driving experience through a direct connection to the road. It didn't need a lot of horsepower to move it along because it was so light weight. It just went where it was told, kind of like the winning formula for today's Elise. The 7 was so popular in fact that after Lotus stopped making it, dozens of companies jumped in and started offering their own 7 kits. Although Ca