While the Ariel Atom and KTM X-Bow are small, quick and handles like a go-kart straight out of the box, they are both open seaters that expose you to the elements – unlike the Praga R1 that is. Shaped and designed similarly to something you might see at the prestigious Le Mans 24 Hours meet, you not only get a roof over your head, but a 4-cylinder Renault engine mounted mid-ship as well.
Praga is a company head quartered in the Czech Republic that was founded as early as 1907 that later went on to produce engines and gearboxes for the light Panzer 38(t) tanks and even aircrafts.
It the company is returning with a RenaultSport partnership in its hip pocket, a 2.0L 4-cylinder engine packing VW-like power outputs of 210bhp at 7,500rpm. However, it does come in weighing significantly less, about half that of a VW GTI’s kerb weight, at 590kg; giving the R1 a power to weight ratio of 356bhp per ton.
Power is sent to the rear wheels via a 6-speed Hewland JFR sequential gearbox with pneumatic control and a self-locking differential as well as some race-safety equipment such as a safety fuel tank, an integrated OMP fire suppression system, a 6-point racing harness and neck restraints – found in and around a carbon fibre monocoque with built-in crumple zones.
There’s even Koni dampers for shock absorption duties, an AP Racing clutch and braking system as well as a Motec electronic engine management to boot for this hand-built Le Mans look-alike that stands 4,170mm long, 1,800mm wide and only 995mm tall. It will carry a price tag of 98,000 EUR (about RM400,000 at current exchange rates).
Now watch it get flung around by Danny van Dongen at the Slovakiaring!