Ares Design S1 is a 700bhp limited edition supercar

Production of the new Ares S1 will be limited to just 24 examples – each of which will be powered by a naturally aspirated 700bhp V8 engine

Ares, the Italian-based coachbuilding firm run by ex-Lotus CEO Dany Bahar, has unveiled its latest project – the S1. The limited edition supercar aims to tackle the latest mid-tier road rockets from the likes of Ferrari, Lamborghini and McLaren – albeit in a somewhat old fashioned manner.

Due to increasingly stringent emissions regulations, most modern supercars are moving in a uniform fashion towards either pure-electric or plug-in hybrid drive. Not the Ares S1, though – it’ll be powered by a traditional, naturally aspirated 6.2-litre V8 engine.

The company from which the engine was sourced is yet to be revealed, although Ares has confirmed that it will deliver 700bhp, resulting in a 0–62mph time of 2.7 seconds. The company has also confirmed that the unit will send drive to the rear wheels only, via an eight-speed dual-clutch gearbox.

To support all that performance, the S1’s chassis will feature double wishbone suspension, forged aluminium axles and adaptive dampers. An active rear spoiler and an aggressive aero package will help keep the car stable at high speeds, says Ares, and it should be light, too; all of the supercar’s panels are hewn from carbon fibre.

The Italian brand devoted much of its efforts to the way the S1 cuts through the air. Its body was designed to be as aerodynamically efficient as possible – for example, the engine’s exhaust system was routed through the rear clamshell, which helps reduce the amount of turbulent air flowing through the car’s diffuser.

Inside, there’ll be a pair of quilted leather sports seats, a hexagonal sports steering wheel and lashings of carbon fibre trim. Buyers will also get a digital gauge cluster, a narrow central infotainment system and an additional screen for the passenger, which displays items such as speed and navigation.

A full-scale prototype of the Ares S1 will make a public appearance later this month at Blenheim Palace for the 2020 Salon Privé. Production is set to start in January 2021, with the first examples reaching customers in late spring. Each example will cost €495,000, which works out at around £450,000.

Like Ares’s previous project, the DeTomaso Pantera-honouring Panther ProgettoUno, the S1 will be built in the firm’s 23,000 square-metre facility Modena.

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