NO­MAD/ ACE

Top Gear (UK) - - TOW TEST -

Hands up who didn’t read the brief prop­erly? I ad­mit the Ariel Ace is a su­per­bike, not a su­per­car, and the No­mad is an off-road buggy thing, not an SUV, but in terms of com­bin­ing speed, util­ity and wet­tingy­our­self-with-laugh­ter, I’m stand­ing by my de­ci­sion. It’s not like the No­mad can’t do the school­run. In fact, it’s prob­a­bly sev­eral min­utes faster than an RRS SVR be­cause you can turn hard left through the near­est hedge, tra­verse a field at 70mph then leap the fence on the other side, ar­riv­ing at the school gates cov­ered head to toe in cow dung. Then when the sur­face is more... tar­ma­cky, lit­tle comes close to the Ace. More liv­ing sculp­ture than trans­port, it’s lav­ished with the same mi­cro­scopic at­ten­tion to de­tail you get with the Atom. De­tails like a match­ing dash con­sole to the com­pany’s cars, a mighty 175bhp Honda V4 en­gine and car­bon­fi­bre wheels. But it’s not cheap – start­ing at £20k, or £32k for the one I was cling­ing onto at the track. How­ever, in to­day’s com­pany that’s a bar­gain. My pair­ing, then, is smaller, cheaper, lighter, faster and more fun than any­thing else here. Any ar­gu­ments? Good. JR

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