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Ariel Atom 4 debuts with Honda Civic Type R power

13 July 2018

The most important part of the new Ariel Atom 4 lies under the hood, and is the same engine normally found in the latest Honda Civic Type R.

The Atom 4 retains the inboard, pushrod-operated damper system but features all-new suspension geometry, which includes revised inboard and outboard points plus anti- squat and anti-dive meant to reduce unnecessary body roll and weight transfer. Only the pedals and fuel-filler cap make it over from the previous generation vehicle.

Just like its predecessor, the Atom 4 boasts impressive headline performance figures: 0-60mph is dispatched in 2.8sec, 0-100mph takes just 6.8sec and it'll reach a 162mph top speed. Avon ZZR will be the standard tire on the new Atom.

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Ariel has revealed an all-new Atom for 2018, with the small British firm's latest ultra-lightweight sports auto gaining power from the latest Honda Civic Type R. The heart of this beast is a 320hp Honda Type R turbo engine.

Traction and launch controla are also available to get the most out of the Honda engine, and drivers will also be able to set boost pressures - in the same way the Type R's R+, Comfort and Sport modes do.

The exhaust system has been created to meet race track noise regulations with stainless steel twin outlets.

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Ariel still uses a tubular chassis that's developed and built in-house, though the latest version features larger diameter tubes which help to increase torsional stiffness to the tune of 15 percent over the outgoing model. A revised suspension features tweaked inboard and outboard points, along with anti-squat and anti-drive to keep the auto as flat as possible when cornering. The Bilstein dampers sit inboard operated by pushrods via new geometry bellcranks.

Ariel has given the Atom 4 a revised steering-rack for a wide range of road conditions, though a quicker, track-focused module is still available. Multi-spoke alloy wheels are standard but there is also the option of full carbon wheels for the first time.

The bodywork is all-new and more aerodynamic than before. There's optional, carbonfibre wheels, which save 16kg in unsprung masses, too. The new design better directs air over the cockpit, within which the twin-seat unit has been ditched in favour of individual seats. A big-brake package is also offered, courtesy of AP Racing, which features 290mm, ventilated discs all-round.

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Further aero-honing extended to the aero screen.

Ariel Atom 4 debuts with Honda Civic Type R power