Noble Cars is one of the lesser-known supercar makers in the world. The low-volume manufacturer produces just one model, the M600. A few days ago, at the Goodwood Festival of Speed, the British firm displayed the Noble M500 Concept.
A starting point
The M600 is supposed to be quite a machine. It boasts 485 kW from a twin-turbocharged V8 engine mated with a manual transmission. Low mass (under 1,2 tons) means that the M600 is quick, and can be a real handful to contend with. Many regard the M600’s driving sensations to that of a modern-day Ferrari F40.
This new model, the Noble M500 Concept is supposed to be an entry-level derivative to attract more buyers to the brand. The sleek shape is quite far removed from the flat-surfaced M600, making it easier on the eyes. As a small-scale producer Noble uses parts sourced from larger OEMs. For example, the headlamps are borrowed from the Chevrolet Corvette.
Kudos if you spotted that C-shaped curve on the flank, reminiscent of a similar line on a Bugatti Chiron. At the rear, there is a subtly integrated wing.
Another borrowed item in the Noble M500 Concept is the powerplant, which is sourced from Ford. It is the same 3,5-litre twin-turbocharged V6 that does duty in the Ford GT sportscar. Peak power is rated at 410 kW and drive is transmitted to the rear wheels via a dual-clutch gearbox.
Noble used a Ford V6 engine in its very first car, called the M400. That car had a South African link as the fibreglass bodies were prepared by local firm Hi-Tech Automotive. The M500 will also make use of a fibreglass skin to keep the price down. The larger M600 uses more expensive carbon-fibre.
The car on display reportedly had no interior, so it is probably some time before we see a production version. However, the exterior treatment looks close to production ready, including regular-sized mirrors and off-the-shelf alloys hiding a full braking system.