Tom Ford: Understanding the Caterham 160 isn’t hard. Here we have the simplicity of a ‘pure’ driving experience made real: a bare-bones basic Caterham chassis with short wishbones, drum brakes and an LSD-less live axle. The aluminium bonnet hides a 660cc turbo three-pot the size of a couple of car batteries, and if you were worried about those drum brakes, don’t be - it weighs under 500kg, and only produces 80bhp and a similar amount of torque. Rice pudding skin will rest easy. It even has 14in steel wheels - not seen them in a while - wrapped in 155/65 tyres that have a smaller contact patch than most motorcycle tyres do. See? I understand. But having driven the thing, I simply don’t get why you’d ever actually want it. And if people keep referring to it as ‘The Mighty Caterham’, I’m going to have a less ironic sense of humour failure.
Words: Charlie Turner and Tom Ford
Photography: John Wycherley