I recently had the car flat floored by Rob at Rat Race Motorsport, and during the process the car was weighed to enable each corner of the car to be setup correctly. The weight figure for the car with 16.1kg of fuel and fluids is a shocking 575kg! Which is 69kg heavier than the quoted 506kg weight...
|Caterham R500 'Superlight' Duratec going onto the scales - eventually weighing in at 575kg|
- 22 litres of fuel (the weight of the fuel would be 16.1kg)
- six litres of oil
- a litre of diff oil
- a litre of gearbox oil
- five litres coolant
- brake and clutch fluids
"Weight savings are achieved through a philanthropic application of carbon-fibre goodies, bringing the total weight of the car in at just 506kgs."
...they go on to say:-
"Mathematicians amongst you will have already calculated that anyone committed enough to strap themselves into the Kevlar race seats will be deploying a mighty 520 bhp-per-tonne with their right foot, capable of firing the car from 0-60 mph in just 2.88 seconds."
There's no suggestion or disclaimer mentioning that the 506kg is a dry weight, so I'm not sure how anyone would be able to 'deploy' 520 bhp-per-tonne with their right foot if the car doesn't have any fluids - as it won't run... which to me - is clearly advertising the car as ready to run in a 520 bhp-per-tonne state. Using the following online calculator the only way of achieving 520 bhp-per-tonne is by the car weighing 506kg, not the 575kg mine does - providing the engine is actually outputting the quoted 263bhp too!
|Caterham R500 advertised weight and bhp-per-tonne|
- Heater (probably a kilo)
- FIA roll bar (five kg extra max?)
- Carpets (max two kg)
- Hoodsticks still fitted underneath boot cover (max one kg)
- Lowered floors (extra couple of kg max?)
Let's put it this way - if you add the car (in a useable state with fluids as specified above), then add a driver - (I'm 83kg clothed with crash helmet) you're looking at a total weight of 658kg! Checking that in the power to weight calculator that gives exactly 400 bhp-per-tonne... hmmm... That's a very long way off the 528 bhp-per-tonne quoted...
I'm also certain that my car isn't any heavier than any other 'Superlight' R500 Duratecs, so I'd like to see what Caterhams stance on this is... I feel a letter to Caterham HQ coming on!!! :-)