This is the latest new model from Caterham, and if you like your fun simple and furious, you’re going to like it.
The car’s called the Supersport and it slots into the range underneath the Superlight R side of the Caterham family.
First thing you need to know is the price, which is seriously tempting. Send Caterham a cheque for £19,995 and a Luton van will come round to your house and drop off a large pile of boxes. Send £22,995 and you can collect a ready-made Supersport from Caterham.
Under the bonnet is Ford’s 1.6-litre Sigma engine tuned to 140bhp and on the back of it is a five-speed gearbox fitted with sprint ratio gears. At the other end of the propshaft, there’s a limited-slip differential.
This spec alone gives clues to the Supersport’s intended role, but the four-point harness, minimalist bucket seats and lack of a windscreen confirm that this Caterham is intended for trackdays, sprints and hillclimbs. It’s not the lightest Seven ever, but at 520kg it’s still a strong performer. Caterham says 0-60mph in 4.9sec and a top speed of 120mph.
It’s a brilliant package. Around 130bhp to 140bhp is the perfect power output for a Seven, even if it’s carrying full weather gear and comfort options like a heater and soft seating. In this car it’s more than enough.
The Supersport is fitted with Avon CR500 tyres and for the road I’d be happy with a set with slightly less stickiness. With the LSD at the back, the Supersport has terrific grip out of slow corners. There’s a hint of understeer in quicker corners but that can be dialled out by a slight change of driving style.
Drive there with a helmet on the passenger seat, compete, then drive home via a country pub for supper. No KTM, Elise, Atom or another trackday special has ever been able to improve upon that experience.
The new Supersport is from exactly the same mold; the difference is that it’s very affordable. I’d say it’s one of the best packages that Caterham has ever come up with.
Caterham Seven Supersport
Price £19,995 (kit); Engine 4 cyls, 1595cc, petrol; Power 140bhp at 6900rpm; Torque 120lb ft at 5790rpm; 0-62mph 4.9sec; Top speed 120mph; Gearbox 5-spd manual; Kerb weight 520kg; Economy NA; CO2 NA