Build Your Own Ariel Atom With This Kit!

Over the decades, the kit car scene has become increasingly more sophisticated, and the performance levels have also increased enormously. The venerable VW Bug used to be the most common basis for a kit, but it is now possible to buy impressive kits from a variety of manufacturers. This Altra is a reproduction of the Ariel Atom, and the owner makes it abundantly clear that not only isn’t it an Atom, but it is part of the conditions of sale that the new owner does not attempt to represent it as such. You can park what looks like a nicely made kit in your workshop for a BIN price of $11,000. The kit is located in Houston, Texas, and is listed for sale here on eBay.

Your starting point for this kit is a tubular chassis. It is unclear what sort of tubing is used, but a close inspection indicates that all of the welds seem to be of good quality. The chassis has been powder-coated in silver, and fiberglass panels are also included, just waiting for you to paint them in your choice of color. Apart from an engine, transmission, and a few minor items, everything that you need to complete the kit is there. The items include a gas tank, seats, pedals, master cylinder, lights, turn signals, and mirrors.

What the new owner will need to bring to the party to complete this car, apart from labor, is an engine, transmission, exhaust system, brakes, wheels, and tires, along with springs and shocks. The kit is designed to utilize a Honda K20A engine and transmission. This engine provides pretty impressive performance in its natural home of a Civic, so it is hard to imagine what it will be like sitting in a vehicle that weighs less than half the weight of a Civic. The kit also includes a steering rack, front and rear pushrod suspension, shifter and cables, and dual radiators with cooling fans.

This Altra Kit Car looks like it would be a blast to drive once it is completed. The one note of caution would revolve around whether the vehicle could be registered in certain states. There will be states where the only purpose for this will be as a track-day car. But if you live in a state where this could be registered for road use, then it would be an absolute blast to own!


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  1. Jesse Mortensen Jesse Mortensen Staff

    Oh man, I’ve dreamt of driving an Ariel Atom since they came out! So, this is very tempting. Especially when you consider that new ones cost over $75k! Caterhams are cool, but the Atom is the ultimate track day toy. Well, apparently it’s a fun off-road rig now too (see the Nomad).

    Like 4
    • LARRY

      Jesse…. Still want to build that ARIEL ATOM CLONE?
      Contact Me. I HAVE THEM.

      Like 2
  2. Victor Anderson

    For a kit car that needs to be put together, this is probably one of the easiest kits out there to assemble as there just are not a whole lot of parts to it.
    It would be interesting to know just how close of a match it is to an Atom – like is it a tube-for-tube copy of it? And if not – what’s the differences – is the metal used the same, and does it weigh the same?

    Like 5
  3. Ron

    Imagine this with an engine from a Honda S2000…

    Like 1
  4. Bruce

    The atom and this look to be one of the most fun ways of getting a speeding ticket I can think of. Automotive LUST at it’s bests. LOL.

    Like 1
  5. Dale

    When I see somthing like this, I start dreaming about a swoopy fiberglass body to drop on it and make it a little more weather-friendly.

    Like 1

      do you have an idea of the type of top you would like to drop on it? share if you have pics.

  6. Wrong Way

    Love the idea of making a cool coustom out of this. However I don’t want it!

  7. John

    These are Chinese copy’s of the Atom. Buyer beware. There were a few kits built buy the Chinese Manufacture about 10years ago and they were eventually shut down. A few kits made it to the US and have been bounced around to naive buyers ever since. There are many differences in these and a real Atom that make parts incompatible and essentially make the kits useless without major fabrication/modifications.

    Like 6
    • Jesse

      Yep, the pictures used in the posting are from the Chinese factory and have been floating around for years.

      Like 1

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