When I contacted Ariel motor Greece for this feature, my thoughts were about circuit action, pit stops and rubber screams. Then a crazy idea was advanced by the other side of the line…
The Atom is not just about circuits and lap times. It’s a street legal car, with licence plates and almost everything else you’d expect from a road going machine. Taking it out for a smooth ride is as easy as pushing it on the track, fighting against the clock. So we took it for a ride around the city. With no second thought this mission, the urban mission, begun!
Our test car had the naturally aspirated 245 bhp, 2.0L engine, too bad we couldn’t put our hands on its supercharged brother, a monster that packs a mighty 300 bhp into this compact chassis. Take a look next to the rear wheels, you can actually see the cam belts moving while the engine is running !
Like we wrote above, the Atom’s exhaust system sits right in front of you. No panel lifting required. The manifold, the catalyst (available with the “road pack“), and the muffler are all there, growling.
Power is delivered to the rear wheels via a close ratio 6 speed manual transmission, there is also the option of a 6 speed sequential transmision. All the wheels are 14 inch and carry 185/60 R14 tyres. For the Atom’s braking needs 240mm disks were placed on both the front and rear end (the front ones are vented) with twin piston calipers providing the bite. The front and rear brakes have their independent master cylinder, the system also features a bias adjustment knob next to the steering wheel. Not your usual road set-up! Imagine yourself adjusting the brake bias instead of the radio…
The chassis is a tubular space frame, bronze welded made out ERW/CDS tubes. Why choose such a very complex and time consuming solution in spite of regular steel\aluminium tubing? Because race car of course! This solution offers the maximum rigidity in all directions, while weighting less. The bulkheads are machined from aluminum while the rocker posts are made of Stainless steel.
The suspension configuration is of the type to be found on pure racing machines only. Double unequal legth wishbones both front and rear, pushrods that work as diagonal links from the car’s chassis to the wheels. Aluminium Bell cranks that translate the motion of the pushrod into the downward motion of the damper further enrich the setup. As we mentioned above, nothing normal here.
For the dynamic handling compartment Ariel selected a solid, well known recipe: Adjustuble (spring preload, damping force, etc) monotube Bilstein coilover dampers, which are matched with Eibach springs along with spring helpers. Fine tuning made easy! The suspension rod ends feature inboard rubber bushings for the car to be more confortable on the streets. This package allows for a supreme road to track adaptivity. Think about a chameleon…
The steering rack features a “circuit wise” 1,75 turns lock to lock, but that’s not a problem for the urban missions we’re putting this beauty through: its short length makes the car maneuvrable even at lower speeds. The endlinks are, of course, rose jointed.
Ariel’s building process is that of many years ago: one man for one car, from start to finish. Forget busy assembly lines, robots and computers ! The whole car is assembled by one man only, that’s the reason why his signature lays on that plate next to the gear knob.
The twin composite seat unit is 5 ways adjustable and hosts two 5 point Willans harnesses for both the passenger and the driver.
Only what’s essential to drive finds a place in the cockpit. A three spoke suede steering wheel, the gear knob and and a gauge cluster. Trust us, once you go for a ride with an Atom you will realize that there is absolutelly no need for anything else !
That’s why our cruise moved to the highway and…
A discussion about the recently released Ariel Atom V8 was brought up during the day and for a moment I imagined how different it could be to drive that car. I couldn’t resist share my thoughts and some photos with you…
Imagine yourself being literaly pushed by these 500 horses, while you paddle shift almost as quick as the blink of your eyes… without the need to take your foot of the throttle ! Too bad it’s not available for test drives here in Greece. Like all Ariel Atom’s range though it’s available for purchase, but only 25 lucky customers will get a Atom V8.
We would like to thank Vangelis of Ariel motor Greece for the huge amount of fun and smiles provided plus the extra shots of the Atom V8.
For more informations about owning an Ariel in Greece you can contact Ariel Motor Greece. directly: Click here for the website.