Last produced in 1939, a modernised completed Atalanta will be displayed at the fifth International Concours of Elegance at Windsor Castle on 2-4 September 2016.
The world’s rarest cars from around the world, spanning more than 100 years of automotive progress, will gather at the Concours of Elegance at Windsor Castle this September. Amongst the icons, look out for the reawakening of a lesser-known British automotive rarity – the new Atalanta.
Atalanta, established in the 1930s, was arguably the most technically advanced British sports car of the era. Their innovative design approach delivered exceptional performance, handling and ride comfort. The marque was raced at Brooklands, Le Mans, and attained a team win in the 1939 Welsh Rally.
Only 21 cars were produced before the outbreak of war. Automotive aficionado’s have long revered their tenacious handling and performance, beautifully packaged within elegant lines. Indeed, a 1937 Atalanta Sports won Best of Show at the 2007 Goodwood Festival Cartier Style et Luxe.
Reawakening history, the new Atalanta brings the original British vintage sports car up to date, yet remains true in spirit and sympathetic to the style and function of the original Atalanta sports car design of the 1930s. Atalanta’s original design philosophy – to produce a performance sports car with lightweight construction and reduced un-sprung weight coupled with a light but powerful four cylinder engine – is still embraced today.
Today’s Atalanta is modelled on the elegant original sports car, still packaged in a classic and traditional aluminium over ash coach built body. A considered blend of today’s materials and technology is seamlessly incorporated to improve reliability, performance and safety.
Only a few cars can be created each year, as they are truly handmade, working closely with only the best British craftsmen in their field. Each one is individually built to order in any combination of statement colour and trim. There is also the option for customers to develop further the sporting performance of their Atalanta, or work closely with the Atalanta designers and craftsmen to create their own one off coachwork design utilising the latest Atalanta platform.
The result is a unique car that reproduces the positive and enjoyable characteristics of vintage motoring, in a reliable and usable way, relevant to today’s driving environment. An exhilarating drive with easily accessible ‘torque derived’ performance; a comfortable ride with assured traction yet engaging handling that delivers driver satisfaction even at modest speeds. A traditional British sports car that will patinate gracefully and can be appreciated for a life time.
Rory Watson, Son of Neil Watson, (Atalanta’s original founder), comments: “I never thought that something my father helped create all those years ago could be revived. I know he would be so very proud of what Martyn Corfield and his team has achieved with Atalanta Motors”.
Atalanta’s presence at this year’s Concours of Elegance affords a rare opportunity to see and commission a piece of motoring heritage. The New Atalanta costs from £149,950, including VAT. Limited commissions are available and each is built to individual specifications.
Atalanta Motors Heritage
Established in December 1936 and based in Staines Middlesex, Atalanta Motors Ltd designed and produced innovative and exciting sports cars for just over two years before the outbreak of war halted development and production after only about 22 cars were made.
Atalanta Motors were the only pre-war British car manufacturer that instigated and brought together innovative design features that included fully independent coil spring suspension; adjustable damping front and rear; full hydraulic brakes; electric operated pre-selector gearbox (an early semi-automatic!); three valve twin-spark cylinder head, and made use of lightweight materials such as electron, duralumin and hiduminium for many of its castings. Initially, the Atalanta was offered with Albert Gough’s aluminium 1½-litre 78 bhp and 2-litre 98 bhp four cylinder engines initially developed for Fraser Nash cars. A supercharged option was also available and later in 1938 a more reliable 4·3 litre V-12 Lincoln Zephyr engine producing 112 bhp was introduced.
Atalanta cars were available in a variety of configurations including an open two-seat sports car, two door saloon and a drop head coupe; these advanced and expensive sporting cars were regularly tested by both their owners and the works in various competitive events with some success in the late 1930’s. All Atalanta models benefited from a lightweight construction that contributed to delivering excellent performance and coupled with revolutionary road holding (that was reviewed in a 1939 road test as “beyond criticism; rough, almost colonial sections can be treated like main roads. The Atalanta has the tenacious quality of a racing car when cornering, and it is nearly impossible to cause the tyres to squeal”) the cars gave great traction and high levels of grip.