Went to the launch of Keating and its “new British supercar” in Southport last week and came away disappointed, but not surprised, by what I saw. 

 

Fledgling Keating decided that no journalists would actually drive its SKR. But from this evidence, it seems to be another under-engineered British sports car with a big American V8, no heritage and an optimistic asking price.

The Merseyside likely lads behind Keating want £90,000-125,000 for the SKR. But that cost is “arbitrary” I was told, so it might be more, depending on ‘what the customer wants’.

So far Keating has built just one, and it’s a machine whose build quality is akin to a hobbyist’s kit car, not a £100 grand supercar. Despite the Ford Sierra switchgear, the interior’s not nearly finished, which makes me wonder if the Keating dream has run out of money and now needs customers, who’ll essentially pay to complete the car’s development. Which would explain the ‘arbitrary’ price. 

As things stand, the SKR would tempt only the clinically insane away from an Aston Martin, an Audi R8 or a Porsche 911 Turbo.

But Keating’s press briefing had a good go at convincing us anyway, littered as it was with grandiose performance and reliability claims, which I’m afraid were met with scepticism. One of Keating’s men then got up and said: “Proud British companies are now owned by Germans, Americans or Indians, taking the best of British and using it for their benefit. We’re bringing back the best of British.”