Caterham has created a new 620S model, bringing a number of upgrades to the hardcore 620R model for a more road-friendly experience.
Caterham has launched the 620S model, a slightly toned down version of the extremely hardcore 620R model - designed for more comfortable road use. It retains the 620R’s 310bhp 2.0-litre Ford engine, meaning a supercar-busting 508bhp per ton power-to weight ratio.
As road-going Caterhams go, the extremely lightweight and powerful 620R model launched at the end of 2013 is one of the fastest ever made. Although its road legal, the 620R was always set up as a track car above all, which made it somewhat uncompromising on more bumpy roads.
The 620S looks to change this, with much more road biased suspension settings, although the aggressive limited slip differential and uprated brake master cylinder remain.
Gone is the R’s sequential gearbox – known for making low-speed and town driving uncompromising and difficult. In its place is a five-speed manual transmission with a lightweight flywheel. New 15-inch alloy wheels take the place of the 13-inch items on the 620R, allowing more road-friendly rubber to be fitted, in this case a set of 195/50 R15 Avon ZZS tyres.
Perhaps the biggest change is to the option list, which adds the longer and wider S5 chassis to the mix. Designed for larger drivers, this option is also the one to go for if you find the regular model’s luggage capacity somewhat lacking. Carbon seats, both heated and regular, remain on the option list, while the rest of the interior retains the carbon trimmings of its racier brother.
All these changes add up to what should be a much more usable package. It also means slower outright acceleration, with 62mph coming up in ‘just’ 3.44secs (compared to the 2.7secs for the R). The 620R remains the best choice for the committed track driver, but if you’d rather enjoy the occasional trackday with a mix of thrilling Sunday blasts, then the 620S is most likely the saner choice.