British sports car start-up Elemental Cars unveils RP1 lightweight racer
By Stu Robarts
June 23, 2014
Having teased the the RP1 recently, Elemental has now taken the covers off its debut car. In addition to a host of images showing an open-topped broad-shouldered racer, Elemental has also provided more details. The RP1 is highly tuneable and lightweight, with a road-hugging profile and aerodynamics.
Gizmag featured the RP1 when it was announced, with a handful of photos that hinted at what was in store. The new images show the car's two-seater cockpit, muscular look and tapered curves. In designing the RP1, one of Elemental's aims was to ensure it was easily configurable.
"One of the core guiding principles behind the RP1, was to enable someone to drive across country to their track of choice, quickly adjust the vehicle dynamics to their requirements, drive to their limit, unencumbered by a road-going set-up and then adjust everything easily back for the drive home," the firm says in a press release.
Accordingly, the chassis has been designed to provide ease of access to the car's innards, and Elemental says that its possible for "one person [to] make any adjustment they need, without assistance, with just a couple of spanners and an Allen key."
Elemental says its production development vehicle is powered by a Ford 2.0-liter EcoBoost engine that kicks out 280 bhp. The company believes the RP1 will hit a top speed of over 155 mph (250 km/h), but says it has yet to confirm that in practice. The engine is longitudinally mounted and paired with a paddle-shifting Hewland 6-speed sequential gearbox.
The car's dash-panel wraps around the driver and passenger. As well as the engine start button and a multi-function dash display, a variety of custom dash options are available, including G-load sensors, data logging and a means of monitoring powertrain variables. The car has halogen projector headlights, while the indicators, brakes, tail lights and daytime running lamps are all LEDs.
Elemental has also announced that it intends to build a limited number of GT-Cup-spec versions of the RP1, in time for the 2015 racing season. With a length of 3,740 mm (147 in) and a width of 1,775 mm (70 in), the RP1 GT is not small. It has a wheelbase of 2,525 mm (99 in) and Pro Race wheels with Yokohama tires.
The car features subframe-mounted, long arm, double wishbone suspension with Eibach springs on Nitron dampers at both the front and rear. Braking is provided by way of Caparo AP four pot calipers on 280 mm (11 in) vented floating discs.
The Elemental RP1 will be revealed to the public for the first time at the 2014 Goodwood Festival of Speed this weekend.
Source: Elemental Cars