The fundamental design of the Seven hasn’t substantially altered since 1957, although it has been refined and updated. However, Caterham can still be considered to be taking inspiration from this car’s history in search of the lightness, cost-effectiveness and simplicity that are vital to a new entry-level budget model such as this.
Like all other Sevens, the 160 and 165 have a tubular spaceframe construction clothed in stressed body panels made mostly of aluminium. Composite panels have been adopted in places, though, to save weight.
At the rear, the car uses neither the de Dion semi-independent rear axle adopted by Sevens since the 1980s nor the fully independent set-up of the Seven CSR, but a live axle suspended via trailing arms and a Panhard rod.
The axle saves weight and, it can be surmised, cost. It will also add unsprung mass at the rear end, which may present in a more uneven ride for the car over particularly bad surfaces. Wheels are steel, 14 inches in diameter and 4.5 inches wide, wrapped in balloon-like 65-profile tyres.