Finally, a supercar to really care about. This is the new Noble M500.
The new M500 will have a manual gearbox, a manual handbrake and go like the clappers. Surely this is the £150,000 supercar to have?
Many of the younger readers may not even know the company Noble such seems to have been their demise in recent years. Those who do probably have Top Gear to thank for it. They have always been giant killers on the track and the way they seemed to copy TVR’s attitude to speed and safety always put a smile on the drives face. Huge engine, lightweight body, no ABS and a chassis to die for, sounds pretty good. But the bigger question was why did nobody actually ever seem to buy them. I have never seen one on the road, remarkable considering I live in the north of England only about 40 miles from the factory. A shame really, but let's hope that will be fixed with the new car. It was first unveiled the 2018 Goodwood Festival of Speed Motor Show and rather oddly, I was there and it is still to this day the only Noble I have ever seen.
Headlines for the new M500are pretty impressive. Rather than the 4.4L twin turbocharged V8 from the M600, this will feature Fords very impressive twin turbocharged 3.5L EcoBoost V6, the same found in the recent Ford GT and Ford F-150 Raptor. It doesn't make a great sound, but that really is the only bad thing you can say about it. It has loads of torque, is powerful and is a small engine, exactly what a light, manual, rear wheel drive sports car should have. The M600 is renowned for its incredible speed, faster in almost every increment than a McLaren F1 would you believe, and the M500 should follow this trend. Power output should be around the 550 brake horse power mark. No discussion as of yet about what the torque figure will be, but considering the Ford GT could manage around the 550 lb ft, the word to use will probably be sufficient.
To keep the price down compared to the M600, the body would be made out of glassfibre as opposed to carbon. As for the looks, it really is quite a pretty thing. Not the shouty look at me design that so many supercars seem to be going for these days, but it reminded me of a Lotus, simple, pretty but you just know that it is all brilliantly fit for purpose. The only concern might be the price. It's meant to start around the £150,000 mark which is right slap bang in the middle some pretty stiff competition. The new 911 Turbo S on paper at least will be faster in a straight line, the new Maserati MC20 is a wonderful car and we all want it to do well because, it's a Maserati and the Audi R8 has a V10 masterpiece which is really all you'll ever need in a supercar. The Noble hits back however with something that nobody else can match. A 6-speed open-gate manual gearbox and a manual handbrake. After all the incredible fuss about the GT3 and its manual, hopefully this will be enough to tempt buyers out of some of the bigger names in the game. Let's hope so, no one wants to see yet another great British carmaker go down, particularly when their products are so brilliant.