The BAC Mono
A long, long time ago, two brothers in England dusted off their tools and got to work. After 12 years of blood and sweat, they put their tools down
and basked in the glory of their 520bhp-per-tonne creation
No matter how many oil spills ruin Florida's beaches, or how many ice caps melt to flood Holland's plains, you can be safe in the knowledge that awesome cars aren't going anywhere. Because, even as manufacturers scramble to shove more resources into alternative energies and killing the free-revving internal-combustion engine, the environmental brigade can never put a stop to one thing; the enthusiast. We're certainly not undermining the effort to save our planet, but the fact is that when petrolheads get together and there happens to be some spanners lying around, something intricately brilliant will result… Something like the BAC Mono. Every enthusiast has at some point daydreamed about his perfect car. Editor Amit's vision is a cross between a Ferrari and a Lamborghini, shrewdly dubbed the Lambari, resembling a melted cement truck with a giant wing on the back, and powered by a V6 engine with 2,500 horses. How he's going to pull that off is anybody's guess. Each to his own, but what English brothers Neill and Ian Briggs dreamt up is a fair bit more realistic than a Lambari, and splendid too.
The BAC Mono — from monoposto, or single-seater in Italian — was created to offer race car levels of handling and performance but with mounting points for a licence plate. As such, the concept makes the Mono the perfect track day car, if not exactly a practical daily driver. With 520bhp per tonne, the power-to-weight ratio is equal to a Bugatti Veyron's, giving the Mono a 0-100kph time of just 2.8 seconds, while 160kph is despatched in 6.7 seconds. Top speed isn't as impressive — 274kph — but don't hold that against the Mono as it's focused on handling and acceleration. CFD-optimised aerodynamics and carbon fibre construction with a tubular steel chassis — yes, carbon monocoques are all the rage, but you'll know the reason for BAC's approach soon enough — are complemented by a 280bhp normally aspirated 2.3-litre Cosworth unit, driving the rear wheels through a paddle-shift, six-speed sequential Hewland transmission with a limited-slip differential. Race-style pushrod suspension features adjustable dampers, and AP Racing brakes hide behind rims wrapped in street-legal semi-slick Kumhos. The combination of all these goodies has resulted in a near-perfect 48:52 weight distribution. Neill says that all the cars are built to order, with BAC's annual production capacity being 50 to 100. Sticking to tried and tested methods and a Cosworth powerplant, as well as ditching the ultra-expensive carbon tub, means the Mono retails for a decent price of about Dh477,000, but that's including considerable UK taxes.
So you see, as long as there are men like Ian and Neill Briggs around, the petrolhead will never become an extinct species.
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