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Thread: Icon and Caterham

  1. #1
    Electron
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    Icon and Caterham

    I had 2 days of business in LA this week and, having a few free hours after landing at LAX, I decided to hop on the 405 to check out Icon in Van Nuys. Icon (icon4x4.com) began as a restorer of Toyota Land Cruisers and now hand builds a line of FJ and CJ vehicles, as well as a new Bronco, which I wanted to see. After going to the Van Nuys location, and then learning they closed the shop and moved 12 miles to Chatsworth, I reluctantly jumped back into LA rush hour traffic to visit their shop. And I'm glad I did.

    I got a tour of their facility, and saw several of their FJ, CJ, Bronco, and "Derelict" restorations in progress. They had 22 folks working the floor, and I learned that over 400 hours of manual labor goes in to each vehicle. That effort translates to the eye-popping prices of $125,00-250,000 for each unique vehicle.

    I learned Jonathan Ward, the owner, had a part in the early Brammo Atom days and seemed to know the Sector111 folks well.

    Jon and I had a short conversation in his office, then he said, "Here, let me show you something we're working on." He then showed me about 15 renders of next-generation carbon fiber bodied Caterhams that are in design and development. Absolutely stunning is about the only way I can describe them. The nose looked like a mate between an Atom and F1 car, keeping pushrod geometry exposed, with really smooth flowing lines to the rear, more like the DP4. He flipped through them so quickly I couldn't get a good mental note on all of the design details, other than that they were overall stunning. Some had enclosed cockpit options for all weather driving, reminding me of a Donkervoort cab, but much more slick looking.

    From looks alone, better looking design that the BAC Mono even, and he said their design requirement was that they be kept street legal and readily pass emissions requirements. The renders were done by some fancy-schmancy European design house, whose name I should remember past the "S", but I don't. I don't think the designs have been publicly released, because I certainly would have remembered them had I seen them.

    I'll certainly be interested to see what "the competition" releases next.

  2. #2
    Neutrino MadMaxAtom's Avatar
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    "better looking design that the BAC Mono even"..wow..that is a pretty high benchmark in my book. Can't wait to see them! I do hope they are not priced in the bazillion dollar segment,though..
    The power of an Atom is a terrible thing to waste! Atom owner/operator since 2007. The more you chase perfection,the faster it becomes. John Force for President! (I asked him once in person...he laughed)

  3. #3
    Electron
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
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    I think I found the designers Icon used:
    www.spadaconcept.com - Home Page

    Icon has a "Reformers Gallery", and they posted the designs on a 1960 Aston Martin DB4 Zagato roadster that Spadaconcept did for them.
    Reformer Gallery | ICON

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