Caparo T1 Prototype debuts at Monaco

18th April 2006

 

The first ever Caparo T1, the world’s most exclusive prototype high performance road and track car, will premiere at the world’s most prestigious motoring event: the Top Marques show in Monaco.  The dramatic 1,000bhp-per-tonne T1, which defines an entirely new breed of supercar that is lighter than a Caterham but with twice the power-to-weight ratio of a Bugatti Veyron, will be unveiled at the show by His Serene Highness Prince Albert II. 

This exclusive preview of the first prototype T1 forms a significant centrepiece for the show, which is being held at the Grimaldi Forum in Monte-Carlo in the heartland of one of the world's most glamorous locations and centres of motoring heritage.  The presentation of the aerodynamically formed supercar will be witnessed by Angad Paul chief executive of Caparo plc together with Caparo Vehicle Technologies’ design director Ben Scott-Geddes and engineering director Graham Halstead, the two ex-McLaren engineers whose inspiration helped create the car. 

The ultra lightweight T1, which weighs less than 500kg, is a British designed 2-seater which has been developed using aerospace and high formula racing technology.  The compact Caparo V8 engine develops approximately 500bhp and the resultant 1,000bhp-per-tonne power-to-weight ratio endows the T1 with an extraordinary 0-60mph time of 2.5 seconds, 0-100mph time of 5 seconds and 0-100-0mph time of less than 10 seconds making it the world’s fastest accelerating and braking road car.  It is also fast round corners with 3g braking and cornering ability equivalent to a Le Mans Prototype. 

The T1’s high power-to-weight ratio delivers phenomenal performance on the track.  Similarly, the same principles of lightweight design in a car one-third the weight of the average family saloon combined with a normal 15 gallon (70-litre) fuel tank means a range better than the average car of up to 500 miles (800km) on public highways.  And that is sufficient to tackle seven hours of driving from London to Le Mans, a distance of 338 miles (544km), without refuelling, before putting in a blistering performance on the circuit.

Commenting on the mould-breaking Caparo T1 Angad Paul said: "This car is in a class of its own when it comes to overall performance; but it also addresses in the most dramatic way possible fundamental design issues facing the automotive industry today. The same approach to aerodynamics, choice of materials and efficient design, which have allowed us to achieve the world’s most reasonably priced supercar, can be applied in equal measure to create affordable, safe, yet lightweight, fuel-efficient family cars.” 

This will be the first time that Caparo Vehicle Technologies has exhibited at any event.  The stunning T1 was created to demonstrate the company’s ability to design and manufacture the world’s first 1,000bhp-per-tonne road and track car, whose performance is close to that of a formula one racer.  More than a concept, this ultra high performance car is designed for low volume production to underscore the company’s technical know-how and competence in whole vehicle design.  With deposits already being taken the hand built car will be available to the first customers later this year.

Event director Robert Evans said: "We are delighted to welcome the Caparo T1 to the Top Marques show in Monaco where up to 10,000 high net worth collectors and enthusiasts, together with 120 journalists and television crews from around the world, will view an amazing mix of luxury cars and rare supercars at this prestigious motoring event.  The T1 is a truly exceptional car and its groundbreaking approach will appeal not only to our VIP visitors but also mainstream automotive engineers facing the enormous challenge of how to stop cars from getting heavier and heavier with each new generation.”

Caparo has confirmed that it will present the T1 prototype for the duration of the show, which runs from Thursday 20 April to Sunday 23 April 2006 in the week following Easter.  Some of the most exclusive car brands in the world will feature at the show with manufacturers present from around the globe.

As well as opening the show and unveiling the Caparo T1, Prince Albert will officially bestow his high patronage by hosting a gala dinner for 450 wealthy, titled and influential VIPs where a substantial amount of the proceeds will be donated to some of the Prince’s charities.

Ends
Further information:  Please note that 09.30 to 12.30 Thursday 20 April and Friday 21 April are reserved for press and VIPs.  If you are attending the show and require further details of the T1 and an interview with members of the Caparo team then please contact Rob Palmer.  
Tel: +44 1582 763255.  Mob: +44 7768 242761.  rpalmer@palmerpr.com

This announcement and previous T1 news releases together with high resolution photo-realistic renderings can be downloaded from www.caparo-T1.com or www.newspress.co.uk

To apply for a press pass please email press@topmarquesmonaco.com and the event organisers will send you a press accreditation form.  You can pick up your press badge at the press office, which will be open during the show and this is located just inside the entrance to the Grimaldi Forum.  For further information on the Top Marques show (www.topmarquesmonaco.com) please contact Robert Evans.
Tel: +44 7071 738267.  Mob +44 7071 738267 robertevans@topmarquesmonaco.com

Note to editors:  Caparo (www.caparo.co.uk) is a £650m ($1.3bn; €1bn) multinational with business interests in manufacturing vehicle structural components.  The group is the largest single-owner business in the UK with a variety of aluminium and steel processing facilities employing 4,500 people globally.  

In March 2006 the group announced its advanced automotive technology and engineering design company called Caparo Vehicle Technologies.  The new company will provide advanced technology development, materials engineering and design services to mainstream automotive, motorsport and aerospace markets.  Coupled with its global manufacturing resource and capability Caparo aims to accelerate the use of lightweight materials in vehicle structures.

To launch the company Caparo acquired the automotive consultancy established by Ben Scott-Geddes and Graham Halstead.  Both engineers were part of the team that developed the iconic McLaren F1.  Their automotive engineering skills have spawned the impressive T1, which will now be launched as the Caparo T1. 

In addition to their skills in vehicle design and engineering the two engineers have particular expertise in materials technology, having been responsible for the Mercedes SLR McLaren sports car; the first advanced composite all carbon body structure to undergo Euro NCAP testing.  This unique capability and understanding of materials performance, including how materials as dissimilar as aluminium, advanced composites, engineering plastics and high strength steel can be joined - and which is the best material for a particular part of the car - is important to manufacturers needing to reduce the weight of vehicles to make them more fuel efficient without compromising active and passive safety.

Caparo has recruited ex-Ricardo head of computer-aided engineering Mark Findlay as managing director, whose first task is to recruit an elite team of around 30 professional engineers with the skills necessary for handling sophisticated engineering design contracts from carmakers and first tier suppliers.  Emphasis will be placed on rapid turnaround of projects so that concepts can be developed for production as quickly as possible in order for clients to gain advantage from being first to market.

Caparo group chief executive Angad Paul takes the position of chairman while fellow main board director Richard Butler also takes a seat on the board.  Sean Butcher who identified the commercial opportunity and brought the two parties together has been appointed commercial director.

Caparo is a fast growing company with business interests in steel and automotive components in Britain, Spain, the US, Canada and India.  The group runs seven plants in India with plans to build ten more this year catering to the needs of carmakers including among others Honda, Maruti, General Motors and Ford. 

The group was founded in 1968 by British Asian industrialist and Labour peer Lord Swraj Paul who was part of the board of Olympics that helped win the bid to host the Games in Britain in 2012.  As chief executive, his son Angad Paul, continues to focus on the same strategy for growth, achieved through the acquisition and turnaround of existing businesses and by the organic growth and development of Greenfield start-up projects, which underpins the group’s skill at building innovative technology companies from scratch and penetrating export markets.


 

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