The name Automobili Turismo e Sport has had a tumultuous history. It dates back to 1963 when a bunch of disgruntled Ferrari employees left to start their own business. The original ATS made a few road-going sports cars and even fielded their own F1 car, with the legendary Phil Hill behind the wheel. But the team and company disappeared a couple of years later.
Fast-forward to 2013 when the company (or at least the name) resurfaced, with designs first with the ATS Sport 1000, followed by the 300 Leggera roadster. It even toyed with the idea of bringing De Tomaso back as well. However an internal dispute left the company tied up with legal matters for the past year or two, but now the reborn Automobili Turismo Sport (sans the "e") is back in more stable hands, with legal measures in place to protect its intellectual property. And its resurgence starts with the model you see here.
The 2016 ATS Sport Dieci is an evolution of the model that put it back on the map a few years ago. Similar in concept to what Radical makes, the ATS Sport has a Le Mans prototype-style look and layout. The scrappy startup has already sold 15 of them, and is now in the process of homologating the design to the FIA's E2B Sport Prototype regulations. What the Dieci version (for the number 10 in Italian) pictured here represents is the opportunity to put one in your garage.
The sports prototype packs a 1000cc Honda motorcycle engine, good for 190 horsepower and giving it a power-to-weight ratio of 490 hp per ton. It also features an adjustable Quaife differential, independent suspension, Tarox brakes, fiberglass bodywork in three parts with quick-release fasteners, a digital dashboard, and Sparco steering wheel. In short, it's got all you could need for a good time at the track, and its capabilities are bound to exceed those of most drivers. Prices start at €39,900, or about $43k at current exchange rates, although what's included at that price is unclear.
"We don't have a US importer, we sell the cars directly," ATS chief Daniele Maritan told Autoblog, "but we are speaking with two companies: one in Florida and one in California" to distribute the company's new models. It also plans on reintroducing the roadster previously known as the Leggera as the Stile50, of which it has already sold a handful of examples, and proceed with development of its GT model with help from outside investors.
ATS continues the evolution of its SPORT by launching a series of technical improvements and presenting a new entry-level version.
With its introduction in 2013, ATS has incessantly continued to develop its SPORT model by testing new technical solutions, with the objective of improving the driving performance and experience of its track car. Aerodynamically, the new SPORT features a new front layout, with the introduction of new air inlets, to guarantee for better cooling and a greater down force capacity. From a structural viewpoint, the 2016 SPORT model required several critical changes in its chassis, in order to meet new crash test safety standards required by the FIA, since the SPORT was to participate in various world championships in the E2B Sport Prototype category. In this context, no less important were the changes made to numerous components and different materials, now improved in quality, in order to reduce the weight of the vehicle as much as possible so that it falls within the limits established by the FIA for this category. The weight of the new SPORT, depending on the engine size, now varies from a minimum of 390 kg to a maximum of 435 kg.
In addition to focusing on development, ATS has also designed a new entry-level version called "Dieci", which aims at pleasing all those clients who wish to enter the world of motor sports but who want affordable prices without sacrificing top quality and performance on the track. The ATS SPORT Dieci still remains a sporty car with a pure driving quality conceived for those enthusiasts who desire an essential driving experience but who demand the best technology available in this market. The new SPORT Dieci turns out as being the best performing sporty vehicle in its segment with a competitive price, while also being extremely easy to service. In fact, ATS has engineered its vehicle to limit the costs of management, studying car parts, including various one-piece components, which can be symmetrically employed on the car, allowing to cut in half the costs of spare parts.
The new SPORT Dieci boasts a Honda 1000 motorcycle engine with 190 horse power and an important power/weight ratio of 490 hp/ton. It is equipped with a 25CrMo4 stainless steel chassis, weighing just 55 kg, a 25CrMo4 50mm steel rollbar, and a front-mounted honeycomb crash box, all CSAI/FIA approved, therefore, allowing the SPORT Dieci to compete in any Italian and European championship. The SPORT Dieci is already equipped with a Quaife adjustable limited-slip differential. Its independent suspensions are fully adjustable and developed for ATS. The braking system is manufactured exclusively by Tarox, with regard to both the 6-piston calipers mounted in series, as well as the front and rear ventilated discs. The body in GRP is ultralight and divided into three parts that are easily removable with quick-coupling connectors, the result of extensive wind tunnel tests. The MXL dash is manufactured by AIM, while the steering wheel and seat belts by Sparco. The 13" light alloy rims are separable with the possibility of a central attachment. The radiators have been designed and developed to specifications in aluminum, in order to reduce the weights by increasing cooling.
The new SPORTS Dieci will be marketed at the beginning of 2016 with prices starting from 39900,00€