Described as an “exciting new chapter in its history”, Caterham – the British carmaker famous for the Seven – has unveiled the SP/300.R sports prototype racer at the Autosport International Show in Birmingham, UK. Created in partnership with British engineering brand, Lola Cars, the “aesthetically-sensitive” prototype will feature Caterham Motorsport’s new supercharged version of the Ford Duratec engine, expected to produce around 300 hp.

That’s enough to propel the sub-600 kg car from rest to 60 mph (0-96 km/h) in around 2.5 seconds. The gearing of the car has been selected to reach maximum rpm in top gear at the end of Spa-Francorchamps circuit’s Kemmel Straight, one of the more frequently-visited trackday venues. Top speed will be around 270 km/h.

Lola led the downforce development and aerodynamic styling using CFD (Computational Fluid Dynamics). The basic chassis is an aluminium tub with a longitudinally mid-mounted engine, coupled to a stress-bearing rear transaxle. A forward splitter and large rear wing reduce lift, while a flat underbody maximises ground effect benefits. There’s also an F1-style raised nose section and sectioned panels, which will help reduce repair costs, ease maintenance and allow single-handed removal of body panels on track.

The SP/300.R gets full race suspension – front and rear dual wishbones with pushrod dampers plus adjustable ride height. The rear suspension architecture is derived from Lola’s Formula 3 cars. The tyres are bespoke items by Cooper Avon fitted to 13-inch race rims.

Only 25 SP/300.Rs will be manufactured each year. Caterham is planning a one-make series in which the SP/300.R will star, but details are yet to be finalised.