TITLE: CATERHAM 7 Cars at Auto Lemon - Used Car History Check

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CATERHAM 7 CAR

CARS > USED CAR HISTORY > CATERHAM 7

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CATERHAM 7 (1973-) CAR HISTORY

Car review on CATERHAM 7

The basic design of the Caterham 7 can lay a strong claim to be the oldest still in production. Its origins stretch back to the 1957 Lotus 7, a car that engineering genius Colin Chapman said he "knocked up in a weekend". Lotus made the car for 15 years, while Graham Nearn's Caterham Cars sold them, often when everyone else had given up on it.


When Lotus decided to end production of the 7, Graham Nearn's special relationship with Colin Chapman enabled him to acquire the rights to make the car in 1973. Initially, Caterham Cars struggled to make the plastic-bodied Series 4 Lotus 7. Soon, however, it turned to the simpler and ultimately more purist aluminum-bodied Series 3.


In many ways, the 7's appeal lies precisely in what it does not have. There are no gadgets, no complicated electronics, and no expensive compound- curved body panels. The 7 is fixed on one goal: providing the maximum driver enjoyment with the minimum of material. This was the very essence of Colin Chapman's committed crusade for light weight.


In construction, the 7 had a tubular steel chassis clothed in aluminum panels; only the nose cone and wings were made of glassfibre. The rear axle came from either Ford or Morris, and later Caterham devised its own de Dion rear-ends.


For its engines, Caterham initially continued using Lotus's brilliant126 bhp, 1558cc Twin Cam, but eventually stocks ran out and it switched to Ford engines in a variety of states of tune: GT (84 bhp), Sprint (110 bhp) and Super sprint (135 bhp). If you wanted more power you could go for a Cosworth BDA engine with up to 170 bhp and, later, a Vauxhall 2.0-litre unit with175 bhp. From 1991, Caterham switched to Rover K-series engines: 1.4 (103 bhp), 1.4 Super sports (128 bhp), 1.6 (115 bhp) and 1.6 Super sport (138 bhp).
The ultimate 7 was, however, the JPE (which stood for Jonathan Palmer Evolution, after the Formula 1 driver who helped develop it). With its 250 bhp race-spec engine, lack of windscreen, carbon-fiber wings, extreme light weight and phenomenal braking, this was a very fast car: it did 0-60 mph (0-96 kph) in under 3.5 seconds and could beat a Fen-am F40 to 100 mph (161 kph).


Caterhams of whatever type offered more fun for your money than any other car. Most were bought in near-complete kit form with some components needing to be installed by the customer, which kept costs down and got round the need to Type Approve (legalize) the design. Most production was exported — Caterham received the Queen's Award for Export in 1993. Even today, over 40 years since the 7 appeared, the Caterham remains the absolute benchmark as far as handling and pure fun for the driver is concerned.


CATERHAM 7

 

SPECIFICATIONS

 

ENGINE TYPE

4-cylinder

CAPACITY

1298-1998 cc

POWER

72-250 bhp

TRANSMISSION

4/5/6-speed

TOP SPEED

100-150 mph (161-241km/h)

NUMBER BUILT

Still in production

 

 

 

 

 

 
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CATERHAM 7 CAR

CARS > USED CAR HISTORY > CATERHAM 7


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TITLE: CATERHAM 7 Cars at Auto Lemon - Used Car History Check

Cars Directory: CATERHAM 7 Auto, Automobile, Automotive, Car, Cars, Classic, Classic Car, Used Cars, New Cars, Used Car, New Car

Site Description: CATERHAM 7 Used Car History reviews and guide on classic and older model cars. Including car designers from Italy and Germany. Learn history of cars from classic, exotic, used, new to prototype model cars.

Cars Topics: CATERHAM 7 Classic Cars, Price, Prices, For Sale, Part, Restoration,
Classifieds, Classified ads, pictures, muscle car, picture, and photo , AutoCheck, KELLEY BLUE BOOK, USED CAR HISTORY, VIN number, VIN SEARCH, Lemon Car Check