Caterham — the company that took over production of the iconic Lotus 7, when Lotus gave up on it in 1972 — has introduced the latest evolution of the car in the S variants on the Seven 620.
The latest additions to the historic roadster are the “S” Pack and a wider body chassis, dubbed S5, which bring performance and looks closer to that of the racing 620R.
“When we launched the 620R, we knew that we were unleashing a beast upon the world. It’s never been one for the faint-hearted and should really come with its own health warning,” said Caterham Cars CEO, Graham Macdonald. “But we are, of course, sensitive also to those customers who want the ridiculous performance stats without having to worry about donning race overalls to access them. The new options mean that customers who want the best of both worlds can have exactly that, whether their aim is to pound around the race tracks of the UK or take a Sunday drive, albeit a deliriously exciting one.”
The S5 chassis is longer and wider than the standard S3 on which the Seven 620 is built, providing better balance and more stability in handling manoeuvres. The added bonus is that there’s also more room for luggage and for occupants to stretch out, and it’s also able to fit in a larger fuel tank for increased driving range. Interior carbon fibre panels contribute to reducing overall vehicle weight, as does the engine’s lightweight flywheel.
Power continues to come from the Ford Duratec 2.0-litre four-cylinder, supercharged to deliver 310 hp. The road going 620S delivers power to the rear via a 5-speed manual, whereas the track-intended 620R uses a sequential automatic. Suspension is also changed to the demands of public roads, with more docile springs and dampers, but brakes and the limited slip differential are the same for road and track.
Wheels have been boosted up to 15-ich Orcus anthracite alloy, and are fitted with comfort intended ZZS tires.
The S version can also be equipped with the R’s carbon seats, which can also be heated for the first time. The option adds £995 (just under $2,050 Canadian) to the Seven 620S’s £44,995 price tag (roughly $92,580). Non heated carbon seats are a £600 option ($1,235).
The order desk for the Caterham Seven 620S is now open, with deliveries expected later in 2016.