The Norfolk-based company found considerable acclaim with its lightweight E10 line-up, yet Zenos has now had to close its doors
Mark Tisshaw
18 January 2017

Zenos Cars, the Norfolk-based sports car maker, has entered administration, the company has confirmed.

Zenos has now been saved from administration by a consortium led by AC Cars

The company blamed a recent downturn in trade as the primary reason, adding that a spate of cancelled export orders late last year caused a funding shortfall, which ultimately led to the company's demise. Irvin Cohen and Gary Shankland of Begbies Traynor have been appointed as administrators. 

Read our review of the Zenos E10 R here

Zenos boss Mark Edwards said: "It is with great disappointment that the board has had to take this step. We still believe that our products offer unrivalled affordable fun and we have already made very good progress in developing the next product in our strategy."

Zenos was set-up in 2012 by ex-Caterham and Lotus employees Ansar Ali and Mark Edwards. Ali departed the firm in 2015 but remains a shareholder, since joining McLaren, and Edwards has led the company since.

The firm was set-up to offer an alternative to the likes of the Lotus Elise and Caterham Seven, and it based itself close to Lotus’s headquarters and had staff with experience from Lotus, Caterham and Zenos.

The first car was the E10, a no-roof sports car that came in at £25,000 and was created to try and offer serious performance machinery at an accessible price. More potent E10 S and E10 R models have followed since.

Read all of our Zenos reviews here

Back in September, Zenos claimed it had its production slots for the rest of 2016 filled, and that it had orders going into 2017. It made the announcement as it delivered its 100th car.

This year it planned to follow-up the E10 with the E11, a version with a removable soft-top roof, and the E12, a fixed-roof coupe. The pair were conceived to be more accessible, and bring Zenos to a wider market.

Join the debate

Comments
5

18 January 2017
Hopefully it can be saved. Really nice bit of kit.

18 January 2017
Wasn't Caterham looking to build a affordable more road biased car to sell along the Seven. Put a roof on this and you have a proper everyday sports car. Madness not to.

19 January 2017
that is a really good idea

18 January 2017
Saddened to hear this, a great looking car that was thoroughly well engineered. Met some of the staff a couple of times at car events; they were nothing but welcoming....

18 January 2017
How much of our money went into this venture, they seemed to often be winning grants for development ?

Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

  • Jaguar XF Sportbrake TDV6
    First Drive
    19 October 2017
    The handsome Jaguar XF Sportbrake exhibits all the hallmarks that makes the saloon great, and with the silky smooth diesel V6 makes it a compelling choice
  • Volkswagen T-Roc TDI
    First Drive
    19 October 2017
    Volkswagen's new compact crossover has the looks, the engineering and the build quality to be a resounding success, but not with this diesel engine
  • BMW M550i
    First Drive
    19 October 2017
    The all-paw M550i is a fast, effortless mile-muncher, but there's a reason why it won't be sold in the UK
  • Volvo V90
    First Drive
    19 October 2017
    The Volvo V90 is a big estate ploughing its own furrow. We’re about to see if it is refreshing or misguided
  • Kia Stonic
    First Drive
    18 October 2017
    Handsome entrant into the bulging small crossover market has a strong engine and agile handling, but isn’t as comfortable or complete as rivals