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Caterham Seven Monaco
5/10

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Road Test

Caterham Super 7 Monaco driven

Driven December 2010

Additional Info

Don't be put off by the name - despite being called the Monaco, this Caterham isn't some hideously overpriced special edition. It's actually a slightly cheaper wayof owning a 1.6-litre Caterham 7. It'll cost you £20,995 (a couple of hundred quid less than the normal Roadsport), and for that you get leather seats thrown in for free, plus a posh twin stripe that apes the Monégasque flag colours, running down the bonnet. Very cool.

It's great that it looks special, but annoying that there haven't been any engineering tweaks, so, like the 1.6 Roadsport, it doesn't tick many of the boxes a fun weekend runabout should. You're constantly left wantingthat little bit more punch when you accelerate... yes, the 1.6 is responsive enough from low revs, but it runs out of puff above 60mph and sounds coarse over 5,000rpm. The feeling that you might run out of talent/road/country at any moment is noticeably lacking. Which is bad.

Overall then, best not to bother with the Monaco. A quick scan of Autotrader reveals a secondhand R300 Caterham for a smidge over £20k. If you're going to compromise on lots of the modern comforts a normal car offers, like a proper heater for instance, then you might as well compromise properly and get performance that tears your face off. An R300 in other words.

Piers Ward

On your drive for: £518pcm
Performance: 0-62mph in 5.9secs, max speed 112mph, n/a mpg
Tech: 1598cc, 4cyl, RWD, 125bhp, 120lb ft, 555kg, n/a g/km CO2

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