Ariel is about to rewrite history with its upcoming Atom 500, a V8-powered mini-space shuttle that pulls out figures of over 1,000 bhp per tonne. This from a 2.4-litre V8, which is perhaps paying homage to current Formula One rules. It is supercharged and revs to 10,000 rpm.

The 6-speed sequential gearbox is just the correct package to go with Atom 500, that along with launch control will quickly make toast of the wheels on take-off, probably almost every time. Built with an integrated function steering wheel, carbon fiber panels and aerofoils, Atom 500 is all about lightness, as seen on the bathroom scale when it hits its maximum mass of 500 kilograms.

“For a few customers the Atom 500 will be the ultimate expression of lightweight performance,” says Simon Saunders who is director at Ariel, “and represents the outer limits of what is achievable in a road registered car. We also use this sort of project to explore the possibilities of how we can improve our standard cars.”

Pricing will be confirmed soon and production is strictly limited to a few units. Those lucky, or brave enough to buy one, will probably experience what very few humans on earth have ever experienced.

Got a tip for us? Email: