Motorists are spoiled for choice when it comes to track-focussed performance cars, including the Ariel Atom and Caterham 620S. And now there’s another called the Avatar Roadster.
This ‘lightweight sportscar’ is the work of Devon-based Avatar, which is the race division of specialist car producer Marlin Sports Cars – a company that has been making chassis for its own creations and other manufacturers for more than 35 years, apparently.
The road-legal Avatar Roadster will need to be light and fast to compete in a tough market. Luckily it weighs just 700kg, ticking the first box, and is powered by a 2.0-litre Ford Ecoboost engine with 252bhp and 400Nm of torque that sits behind the driver, ticking the second.
On paper the Roadster sounds brutally quick. 0-60mph takes 3.9 seconds, while the top speed is 150mph. Enough, then, to see off all but the fastest Radical and Caterhams such as the 620S.
The engine is mounted transversally and has been partnered with a five-speed manual gearbox used in the Porsche Boxster. It also has adjustable dampers, Quaife limited-slip differential, ‘Hi-spec’ brakes and a Tilton pedal box.
Holding everything together is a tubular spaceframe chassis that allows the driver to sit closer to the centre of the car. It also provides storage space for a roof, just in case the heavens open, and makes it possible to remove sections of the bodyshell in fewer than 30 seconds.
Not only that, it is possible to upgrade to three-way dampers, stiffer springs, six-pot brakes, six-point harnesses, fire extinguisher, uprated cooling pack, DL1 data logger with camera, HANS custom seat and race-only aero packages before or after the factory fit.
Those who plan to use their Avatar Roadster on the track will be pleased to know it comes with technical support that allows tailoring of the setup based on the buyer’s weight, driving preferences and planned use. So help is just one phone call away if you need to discuss your new pride and joy.
Every Roadster comes with an unlimited mileage, three-year warranty and the engine can easily be serviced by any Ford garage, the manufacturer said.
For a more brutal experience, an upgrade to a 2.3-litre Ecoboost (used in the new Mustang) with 350bhp will be available, although it is unclear how much it will cost extra.
Avatar designer and company racing driver Dylan Popovic said: “We have completed over 1,200 laps at the demanding Castle Combe circuit to finesse and prove the quality of the Avatar. Consumers expect to drive to a track day, thrash around all day and come home again without wielding the spanners. The Avatar was conceived with high quality components to do just that.”
Company founder and director Terry Matthews added: “We want Avatar owners to enjoy a spirited drive on a crisp Sunday morning or turn up to a track day, surprise a few owners of more exotic machines and drive home with a big smile on their face, confident they have a reliable, safe and enjoyable car.”
Four cars have already been ordered, according to Avatar, and there are plans to build a run of up to 25 by 2015. Deliveries will begin in May 2016. We are waiting on pricing details.
Expect to see the Avatar Roadster in full at The Performance Car Show on the 14th to the 17th of January 2016 at the Birmingham NEC.
Update: The 2.0-litre Roadster costs from £29,450, while the 2.3-litre starts from £34,450.