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Ariel’s New Off-Roader Packs a Focus ST Engine Punch: Meet the Mighty Nomad 2

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Ariel's latest off-road vehicle will be powered by the engine from the Focus ST. The Nomad 2 outperforms its predecessor, the Nomad 1, in terms of strength. When discussing off-road toys, there are only a handful that can compete with the knowledge and madness of Ariel Motor Company. This small British manufacturer, once famous for the wildly innovative Atom, is now releasing the second generation of the fun-filled buggy, the Nomad.

This is an entirely fresh version of the Nomad, with only three components being carried over from the previous model. The most notable modification lies within, so to speak, the 'engine compartment'. While the original Nomad utilized Honda's 2.4-liter K24 engine (and later versions saw a Nomad R with a supercharged Civic Type R engine producing 340 horsepower), the latest model adopts the 2.3-liter turbo engine from the Ford Focus ST. Thanks to some enhancements, in the Nomad 2 this engine delivers 309 horsepower and 518 Newton-meters of torque.

This signifies a significant increase in power of 79 horsepower and 218 Newton meters compared to the previous model. However, the Nomad 2 is equipped with a switchable ECU featuring three distinct mappings. In addition to the high-end specification, there are configurations with 302 horsepower and 452 Newton meters for the mid-range model, and 260 horsepower and 385 Newton meters for the entry-level version.

Photo Gallery: Ariel Nomad 2

Due to its delicate structure and almost non-existent body parts, the latest Nomad model is exceptionally lightweight. To be precise, it tips the scales at 715 kilograms. This naturally results in an impressive power-to-weight ratio, which translates into stellar driving performance. The acceleration from 0 to 60 mph (0 to 96 km/h) takes just 3.4 seconds, and it can reach a top speed of 216 km/h. While it's not designed to set records on the Nürburgring's North Loop, it's likely to be one of the fastest vehicles off the paved roads.

With a wheelbase measuring 239.5 centimeters, this compact off-road vehicle boasts a length of just 3.40 meters, a width of 1.86 meters, and a height of 1.47 meters. Thanks in part to a 48-degree approach angle at the front and a 64-degree departure angle at the rear, the two-seater can conquer extremely challenging landscapes. It is equipped with 16-inch wheels fitted with Yokohama Geolandar A/T 235/70R16 tires and utilizes Eibach springs on both axles.

As a substitute for the Focus ST's six-speed manual transmission, Ariel introduces the option of a sequential gearbox from Quiafe for the Nomad 2, which is already being used in the Atom 4 and Atom 4R. There's even a hydraulic handbrake similar to the ones found in drifting and rally cars. As previously mentioned, only three parts have been retained from the first-generation model: the steering wheel, the pedal assembly, and the fuel cap.

In line with the additional power, the latest Nomad 2 model boasts brakes that are 40 percent larger. For an additional charge, Ariel incorporates the AP four-piston brake system with 290-mm brake discs from the Atom 4, installing it on all four wheels. Furthermore, the rigidity against twisting of the frame has been enhanced by over 60 percent.

There is a wide variety of choices available, including forged wheels measuring 18 inches and beadlock wheels at 16 inches. An additional cost is applied for the customizable ABS, which features selectable modes for on-road and off-road use. The so-called "Bikini Top" provides protection from UV rays, and the practicality of this dedicated off-road vehicle is enhanced by the rear-mounted luggage rack.

In the UK, the starting price is set at £67,992, which is roughly equivalent to €80,650, and that's before factoring in any of the 100 plus options available.

Even more wild off-road vehicles.

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