The Seven 620 R is listed by Caterham as being the fastest road car they’ve ever made – and the only reason they stipulated “road car” is because they have a Formula 1 team with cars that are marginally quicker.
Discussing specifications can sometimes give you a good idea of what a car’s capabilities will be, but with the Caterham they almost don’t do it justice – it has a 310bhp supercharged 2.0 litre Ford Duratec engine, a sequential six-speed transmission and a kerb weight of 545 kilograms (1201 lbs).
It can do the 0-62 mph dash in 2.79 seconds, which is enough to whip your eyelids back over your forehead and leave them flapping in the breeze.
The original Seven wasn’t quite this quick, it was developed by Colin Chapman and released in 1957 as a blue collar chap’s weekend race car. It could be driven from your cottage in the English countryside to your local circuit or hill climb – where it was capable of dispatching far more expensive and powerful motor cars. Once the final chequered flag of the day had fallen, the little Lotus Seven could be driven home – or more likely, down to the pub.
Lotus built the original Seven between ’57 and ’72, a difficult decision was made to discontinue the model in favour of the newer cars being built by the marque, but customer demand for the Seven never waned. Rather than seeing the car relegated to the annals of British motoring history, the team at Caterham (at the time, the largest Lotus dealership in Britain) came to an arrangement with Chapman to buy the tooling and the rights to the design – renaming it the Catherham Seven in the process.
Caterham have produced the Seven and it’s derivative models for the past few decades without a hiccup – the model is still seen by many in the motoring community to be the purest form of road legal driving in existence, and new versions like the dragon-slaying Seven 620 R go a long way to ensuring that the humble little Seven will carry on well into the 21st century.
Click here to read more about the Caterham Seven 620 R.
Articles that Ben has written have been covered on CNN, Popular Mechanics, Smithsonian Magazine, Road & Track Magazine, the official Pinterest blog, the official eBay Motors blog, BuzzFeed, Autoweek Magazine, Wired Magazine, Autoblog, Gear Patrol, Jalopnik, The Verge, and many more.
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