The Ferrari has long been revered as the ultimate drivers car despite it leaving Maranello some 33 years ago. It was an ungodly recipe of minimal mass and bi-turbo charged V8. It was badly made poorly finished pure and simply because it was a racer with number-plates. The 2.9 litre boosted V8 was a laggy old brute producing 470bhp (500 all day long) with 577nm to match. Thanks to smatterings of carbon fibre, thin plastics and virtually no interior, the F40 weighed in something around 1300kgs. What resulted was a Rosso Red projectile that looked at fast as it was, with lashing of green electricians tape holding interior panels together. On the face of it the F40 looks to offer little but because of just that it gives you pure driving Nirvana. It’s a car you would man-handle and wrestle with when the boost came in from the massive turbos. But that was 1987 before Health and Safety, if you died you died back then, you knew what you were get into. Modern cars are bestowed with a multitude of electrical safety features, airbags, navigation and tech which makes them fat and heavy like me.
Step up Noble. It’s 2013 and the purists deserve something exciting and frankly quite dangerous. the Leicester based firm who’ve already enjoyed success with their M12 and M400 cars were going big this time. Not so much a sports car but a full bore supercar harking back to the “good old days”. Take a Volvo V8 strap some massive turbos to it, let Yamaha fettle with it and throw it in a gorgeous low-slung body. What results is a handmade British supercar that’ll give you 650bhp and 225mph sounds great right? But wait there’s more 0-60 in 3.7 seconds courtesy of an old touring-car like manual gearbox with the selector nestled closely to the wheel. I love Noble’s simple yet beautiful design, the body manages to be understated yet beautiful and the side profile is to die for. I like that it’s a bit of a parts-bin special yet choreographed perfectly to stimulate your senses and scare yourself to death if handled poorly, it’s a monster in a metallic and carbon suit. Albeit one without ABS so should your inputs be heavy-handed you’ll pay the price.
I actually really like the interior too. Carbon fibre and alcantara everything it seems with a few leather bits for comfort. The highest praise any car can receive is comparison to the F40. The daddy of what we know today as the supercar, 200 plus miles per hour, functionally sculpted body panels,low to the floor big brakes and an exhaust note to make your hairs stand on-end. As you can tell I adore the M600 and considering Tom-Hartley have one for sale for under £180,000 you’ve got to admit it’s a bit of a bargain. We saw an F40 burn to a crisp in Monaco recently which itself is a tragedy, most will reside under dust sheets and never get driven hard again. Why not capture the spirit of the F40 in a modern rendition, without guilt nor the multi-million pound price-tag. I doubt we’ll ever see another car enter the supercar elite in such a minimal and pure guise, the M600 will always be a very special thing no doubt a future classic.