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Caterham Seven is priced from $69,990*
and the new Seven 485 is priced from $108,990*.

Caterham Seven 485 arrives

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7th January, 2014

The most powerful Caterham ever offered for sale in Australia is now available for the 2014 model year.

Called the Caterham Seven 485, this new model comes with a specially developed Euro 6 emissions compliant 177 kW (240 bhp) Ford engine, which provides scintillating performance. The light weight design results in a zero to 100 km/h acceleration time of under 4 seconds, putting this Caterham model in with some select and far more expensive company.

The name may need some explaining. The Caterham factory in England has decided to use the iconic Seven (7) name more strongly in future. Last year marked 40-years of Caterham Seven production, but of course, the Seven was originally designed by Lotus founder Colin Chapman and the original Seven first saw the light of day in 1957. It was a vital model for the then fledgling Lotus marque and played a key role in the establishment of the Lotus brand.

By 1973, Mr. Chapman wanted to move more upmarket with Lotus products, resulting in him selling the Seven manufacturing rights to his biggest dealer, Caterham Sports Cars, located in the town of Caterham, south of London.

Over the years, the Seven has been extensively developed, for road and track use. By 2000, the new longer and wider CSR model was introduced, featuring inboard front suspension and a fully independent rear suspension. This was complemented by the SV range of Roadsport and Superlight models, being offered in the original Series 3 and also in the physically larger SV (Series 5) range. This was good news for Australia, as the older Series 3 chassis is too small to meet the current Australian Design Rules.

So after the short history lesson, in summary we saw the making of the Seven in 1957, designed by Colin Chapman, who was 5’ 7”. Lots of ‘sevens’ then.

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During 2014 and beyond a new range of Seven models will be announced, with the Seven 485 being the first. The ‘485’ moniker comes from doubling the 240 bhp power output, to give ‘480’. UK cars will use this moniker, but the European Type Approved cars, on which the Australian versions are based, delete the zero and add a five, hence 485, the ‘5’ indicating European emissions compliance.

In Australia, the new Seven 485 replaces the previous Superlight SV R300 model, but for the time being, the current Roadsport SV 120 (from $69,990*), Roadsport SV 175 (from $84,990*) and the CSR 175 (from $89,990*) models will remain available. With the Roadsport SV 120 using the Ford 1.6 litre engine, it is classified as a fuel efficient vehicle in Australia and consequently misses the Luxury Car Tax in standard form.

Some readers may have noted the new Seven 160/165 announced late last year, as a new entry model. This 3-cylinder Suzuki powered vehicle will not be coming to Australia, as it is only available in the smaller (and cheaper) Series 3 range. Likewise, Australians will be denied the Seven 620, a UK specification model only, not meeting European or Australian noise and emissions regulations.

Australian Caterham enthusiasts  have a wide range of models from which to choose, all offering motoring pleasure in its purest form, some more affordable, others faster, some extremely fast. But all are fun to drive!


* Manufacturer's List Price (MLP) excludes dealer delivery fees and the numerous statutory charges (commonly known as on-road costs). Additionally, please note that all prices, fees and charges are subject to change without notice, as are the specifications.



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