A NEW APPROACH IN AN AGE OLD BUSINESS+44 (0) 1926 691 141
Sold for: £30,375
Noble Automotive Ltd. was founded in 1999 by British entrepreneur, car designer, and engineer Lee Noble and using his experience from his time spent at Ascari, he quickly established his company's commitment to designing and manufacturing high-performance sports cars with a mid-engine, rear wheel drive layout. As chief designer, he oversaw the evolution of the company's first model, the M10, into the M12 which was first produced in 2000. This soon became a benchmark for its incredibly compliant ride, pin sharp handling and impressive power delivery, receiving almost universal praise from, frequently difficult to impress, motoring journalists. Lee Noble sold the company in August 2006 to Peter Dyson and later moved on in 2008 to work on other ventures, however, as well as being a knowledgeable collector of exotic cars and a successful business entrepreneur, Dyson was an M12 owner and a huge admirer of both Noble Automotive and the M12's attributes. He has taken Noble Automotive forward, with new hi-tech premises in Leicestershire and their current model, the M600, is a highly regarded supercar and a serious competitor to many more established and revered marques. The M12 was produced in four versions (GTO 2.5, GTO-3 3.0, GTO-3R 3.0, with the M400 being the ultimate variant), all being powered by a sympathetically tuned (forge decompressed rods, cylinder block modifications with cylinder bore oil spray jets, crankshaft balancing, and turbo oil feeds built into the heads, along with ST 220 camshafts, coil top plugs, and a new MBE engine management system) twin-turbocharged Ford Duratec V6 engine.The basic structure is a steel tub with a full steel roll cage and G.R.P composite clam shell body parts. These cars are extremely lightweight and stiff, with the ability to perform very well on both road and track, and offer surprisingly good ride quality and lots of confidence-inspiring feedback. At launch, the M12 had 310 bhp with the help of its pair of Garrett T25 turbos, giving a top speed of 165mph and a 0-60 mph time of 4.1 seconds. With its quasi-racer feel, being heightened by the very visible, Alcantara-trimmed roll-cage and no-nonsense instruments, this really is a driver's car. There was no ABS, no traction control and no ESP, just real engineering integrity and a brilliant design. These special cars were able to compete dynamically with the best junior supercars of the day. The car offered here is a 2001 M12 GTO 2.5. Rarely for a Noble, we are informed that this car has only ever been used on the road and never tracked, and its fantastic condition and originality would strongly support this. This M12 has been well maintained, having covered just over 15,700 miles, which must make it one of the least driven examples currently available. This mileage is backed up by a series of old MoT certificates and a number of receipts, and is supplied with uk V5c and fresh MoT.