Ariel supercharges the Nomad


In case you haven’t heard of the Nomad, all you need to know is that its the off-road loving variant of the face-bending Ariel Atom. The Atom was unleashed upon the world about 10 years ago now, powered solely by a naturally-aspirated Honda 2.0L 183kW (245hp) VTEC engine, which despite sounding fairly pedestrian, could propel it from zero to the national highway speed limit in next to no time at all, thanks to the Atom’s extremely low kerb weight.


The Atom was was later released with a handful of different engines, but arguably it was at its best when optioned with a supercharger. The whine of the supercharger’s drive belt and instantaneous throttle response best suited the personality of the car, which with its tubular exoskeleton and completely naked bodywork could only be called insane.


Ariel’s success with supercharging the Atom means it comes as no surprise that the off-road only Nomad is now going to receive the same treatment. So if you tick the relevant box on the options list, it’ll now come fitted with a 2.4L Honda engine producing 216kW (290hp) and 340Nm (251 lb-ft) of torque. All that extra grunt means the Nomad’s 0-100kmh time is reduced to just 3.4 seconds, which despite being extremely fast is still noticeably slower than the Atom, due in part to the off-road tyres and slightly higher kerb weight.


The supercharger option will drive the Nomad’s 30,000-pound starting price ($46,300 at today’s rates) up by 6,000 pounds (about $9,300). And don’t worry, if you’re one of the lucky few that’s taken delivery or already ordered your car – the blower can be retrofitted to existing Nomads.