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Hideous OPC-powered 'go-kart'

2008-08-25 07:44
Jetstream’s Extreme SC250 powered by Opel. Running

Jetstream’s Extreme SC250 powered by Opel. Running on bio-ethanol it provides very quick, very ugly, guilt free motoring.

Vehicle Specs
Manufacturer Jetstream
Model Extreme SC250
Engine 2-litre turbo
Power 183kW
Torque 320Nm
Transmission Six-speed manual
Zero To Hundred sub four seconds
Top Speed 265km/h
Weight 700kg
From Cornwall comes the latest lightweight British performance car, Jetstream’s Extreme SC250.

The once proud British auto industry has either been vanquished or bought by former colonial entities. British lightweight, low volume performance car manufacturers though, still exert an influence way beyond their size in the consciousness of the global auto trade.

The latest British low-volume producer is Jestream. Headed up by John Donnelly, the company came into being during May of 2006.

The idea has been to produce a lightweigh, minimalist performance car with low environmental impact in both design and operation whilst retaining a unique styling presence.

Looks like a dog, a very fast dog

Donnelly styled the SC250 himself initially and then let Brian Rossi - of contemporary Ford Thunderbird fame – finish off the design.

Diplomatically put, we think it has great aerodynamic proprieties, which must have been a key design imperative – but it's a bit of minger in the aesthetic department.

Giving form to the ridiculous styling is a hand fabricated composite (read 'plastic') body covering an aluminium monocoque chassis with steel sub-frames front and rear.

Side impact safety is aided by the honeycomb monocoque side panels that also benefit the car’s rigidity by eliminating any “flexing” of the structure. We can't imagine anybody crashing into you driving one of these though; it's looks so terrible most people will stop and pull off the road for you to pass; fearful of being contaminated by the SC250's hideousness.

Both front and rear suspension consist of unequal length wishbones with fixed coil over shocks supplied by Netherlands-based Intrax, owned by Henk Thuis who was formerly Michael Schumacher’s suspension guru at Benetton F1.

OPC power

Powering the SC250 is a rear-mounted 2-litre, Opel sourced, Ecotec turbocharged engine producing 183kW and 320Nm. The engine employs an Emerald ECU set-up enabling either standard road-going mapping or a more track biased ignition and timing regimen for high-performance driving.

With the SC250 weighing only 700kg and driving through the standard six-speed Opel gearbox sprinting capability is explosive, with a 0-100km/h run of only well under four seconds.

Despite the hard-edged styling Jetstream claims a 265km/h for its open-topped SC250; restrained driving should return 7.5l/100km consumption.

Runs on bio-ethanol too

For those performance enthusiasts who enjoy tail-out driving antics yet fail to see why the humble polar bear has to drown because of their driving indulgence, all SC250 Opel engines are compatible to run on bio-ethanol.

The Tilton twin brake system features balance bar bias adjustment and ventilated 285mm front discs, with 278mm rear discs and standard GM callipers. Wheels are 16-inches up front and 17-inches at the rear whilst being shod with Toyo Proxes tyres.

An optional upgrade is available to a 4-pot calliper brake package from AP Racing for those owners who are keen to take their cars to track days – and if you buy one you really should.

Being a minimalist British performance car the SC250 hardly majors on comfort and convenience features. Inside you’ll find two custom moulded composite seats upholstered in high-grade vinyl – which is akin to taking a member of the Royal Family to dinner at Steers on a Wednesday evening.

Keeping taps on the dynamic behaviour of your SC250 can be done via either a digital and analogue dash display from SPA.

Jetstream says the SC250 has been designed to suit all year round usage with the addition of a water-fed heating system, which is great, only problem is they forgot to fit a roof. At least you get an auxiliary input point to power your iPod, mobile phone or GPS system.

Having liberally raided the GM parts bin for most components the SC250 can be serviced at most Opel dealerships, greatly reducing the laborious ownership experience (in both cost and effort) so characteristic of minimalist performance cars. The SC250 retails for £29 495.


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