Having played the renegade on the ultra-lightweight sports car scene for so long, the Ariel Atom has now become a key part of the establishment it once sought to disrupt. Such progression doesn’t happen by chance; and this car is so typical of how cleverly its maker has developed it over the years to retain what makes it so special.
In a visual sense, the Atom remains an appealing car to anyone who likes the idea of being able to see their car working. It’s also so deliciously simple that it makes modern ideas of perceived quality and more meaningful built-in quality one and the same consideration.
A turbocharged engine has boosted the car’s usability as well as its roll-on performance with little entailed compromise, while Ariel’s other chassis and suspension tweaks have proven well worth making. The Atom retains so absorbing a dynamic character that it can be enormous fun on both road and track, when so many of its close rivals simply can’t do both.
If you want one, the waiting list is a staggering three years long; but we’d bet that it’ll still be the outstanding car of its kind in three years time, just as it so plainly is today.