Two Flip Of The Century Lightweights

With rules for each security and emissions coming thick and quick, we received’t ever see automobiles like the Renault Sport Spider or Lotus 340R produced by main producers once more. These form of automobiles serve no concessions to fashionable conveniences; their existence is solely for driving enjoyment.

Previous to January’s Sunday Scramble at Bicester Heritage, I’d solely ever seen a 340R out within the wild as soon as (that was over a decade in the past, on a summer season afternoon) and I’d by no means seen a Spider in particular person. So whereas most individuals flocked to the supercars close by, I used to be immediately drawn to this diminutive pair.

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The Renault Sport Spider was created out of the French automaker’s want to additional promote its capacity to supply sporting, enjoyable automobiles. Designed as each a street automobile and for a one-make racing collection, only one,800 Spiders had been produced over its four-year manufacturing run from 1996 to 1999.

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When you had been in a left-hand drive nation, you may order the automobile sans windscreen, however all of the right-hand drive automobiles got here fitted with one as commonplace.

Sharing the F7R motor with the Renault Clio Williams, the 150hp energy output could appear meagre, however an aluminium chassis and composite panels meant a weight of 853kg (1,880lb) and due to this fact a robust power-to-weight ratio.

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Whereas the Lotus 340R and Renault Sport Spider had been by no means on sale on the similar time, the identical ethos was utilized to each.

The Lotus was launched in 2000, with the restricted run of 340 automobiles all snapped up earlier than launch. Taking the already lithe, 725kg (1,598lb) Exige Collection 1 and eradicating a big portion the bodywork netted a revised weight of simply 675kg (1,488lb). Fibreglass panels barely clothed the extruded and bonded aluminium chassis, with no doorways or roof to talk of.

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The elective efficiency pack bumped energy as much as 190hp, which whereas wanting the goal 340hp-per-tonne objective nonetheless supplied stout efficiency.

Lotus has continued to make limited-run automobiles in the same vein to the 340R with the 2-Eleven and 3-Eleven, however neither of those had been as uncooked and centered as the unique.

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Each automobiles are very cool in their very own proper, however I’m to know which one you would take dwelling given the prospect, and why?

Chaydon Ford
Instagram: chaycore