Top Speed:155 MPH
0-60: 2.8 Seconds
Horsepower: 500 @ 10000 RPM
Torque: 300 @ 8500 RPM
Transmission: 6 Speed Sequential
Initially known simply as the Lightweight Sports Car, the Atom began life as a student project at Coventry University in England. Such was its early promise, however, that automotive industry experts soon took notice and it was on show at the British International Motor Show by 1996. The fourth iteration of the car, the limited-production Ariel Atom 500 V8 was announced in 2008. Sporting the same exoskeletal design as its predecessors, the Atom 500 V8 added a race-bred 500-bhp, 3.0-liter engine, which, aided by a brand new aero package, could propel the 1,213-lb car to 60 mph in just 2.3 seconds on its way to a top speed of 170 mph. Thanks in part to its liberal use of carbon-fiber, it could also boast a phenomenal power-to-weight ratio of over 900 bhp-per-ton. To cope with all that clout, the Atom 500 V8 employed a six-speed sequential gearbox capable of delivering 40-millisecond up-shifts and a suspension akin to that of a Formula One car. All that and the car still retained its street-legal status!
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