British track car and motorbike specialist Ariel has revealed a new ultra-light off-road buggy, dubbed, appropriately, Nomad.
The new off-roader shares its basic architecture with Ariel’s track car; the Atom. And like the Atom, it utilises a simple design approach using a lightweight bronze welded chassis, assembled by hand.
These images and video show a highly-modified platform, including a comprehensive roll-cage, increased ride-height, underbody protection and long-travel suspension.
It also features a quadrant of chunky mud-terrain tyres, signalling its off-road intentions.
Despite its looks, the Nomad is rear-wheel-drive only, making it more suitable for rally stages than technical rock crawling.
The all corner independent suspension should help this cause, and retain high-speed handling characteristics on bitumen or dirt.
At just 670kg and with 175kW/300Nm, Ariel engineers have achieved a power-to-weight bettering that of the BMW M3 and M4 twins but unlike the 2.0 litre Atom, the Nomad gets a 2.4 litre engine - also sourced from Honda.
Engineers focused on delivering low-end torque and resistance to mud and water, hence the new power plant. Protection from mud and dust also means this is the most body-clad Ariel yet, even featuring a windscreen.
However, it’s still confined to bare essentials, with most of the chassis still exposed and no doors or roof.
The new body-panels, bonnet and engine cover will allow for some personalisation however, with customers able to select colours and materials to suit their taste.
Buyers can also opt to upgrade the standard mechanical-slip differential for more technically advanced options.
One option that isn’t expected to be available is an automatic transmission, with just a six-speed manual on offer.
The Nomad will go on sale later this month, with first deliveries expected mid-year. No Australian availability is expected, but UK pricing starts at £30,000 (AU$58,000).