12 October 2004

Caterham has unveiled the most significant new Seven since it took custody of Colin Chapman’s legendary two-seater over 30 years ago: the CSR. It features fully independent rear suspension, a more contemporary cabin and a larger capacity 2.3-litre four-cylinder Cosworth engine.

The new Seven CSR will be offered in two guises: £27,450 CSR 200 and £33,950 CSR 260. At the rear, the familiar De Dion axle makes way for independent double wishbones. Up front, an inboard pushrod arrangement replaces the exterior struts. The front track has also grown by 50mm, making it wider than the rear’s.

The exterior gets a mild makeover, with a larger, remodelled nose and cycle wings improving cooling and downforce. Inside, it gets a ‘spaceframe’ fascia featuring more modern-looking instruments. Indicator arms behind the new steering wheel replace the toggle switches.

In 260bhp, 200lb ft form, the 570kg CSR (120kg heavier than the R500 Evo) hits 60mph in 3.1sec and goes on to 155mph; with 200bhp and 165lb ft those figures become 3.7sec and 140mph.

Caterham will continue to make the K-series-powered Superlight R range as long as the demand is there.

Our Verdict

Caterham Seven

The Caterham Seven is a stripped-down sportscar offering one of the most pure driving experiences available. It is a true classic and available in nine iterations

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