New 2020 BAC Mono is a £165k slice of single-seater mayhem

Published: 03 March 2020

► The new 2020 BAC Mono
► More power, less weight
► 0-60mph in just 2.7sec

The BAC Mono is back with a bang for 2020 – and it follows the well-worn recipe of more power, less weight and more extreme design and technology in the pursuit of ultimate sports car thrills.

The Liverpool-bred single-seater is already a firm favourite at CAR magazine and the latest Mono is a major revision to the formula. It was due to be unveiled at the cancelled Geneva motor show this spring, but the world debut is ploughing ahead regardless.

Key specs and stats of the new £165,950 BAC Mono are pretty startling:

  • 0-60mph  2.7sec
  • Top speed  170mph
  • Engine  2.3-litre four-cylinder
  • Outputs  332bhp and 295lb ft
  • Kerbweight  570kg (10kg less than before)
  • Power-to-weight ratio  Staggering 582bhp-per-tonne power-to-weight ratio

The most extreme track day cars

The new 2020 BAC Mono

The engine is a Mountune-fettled Ford Mustang 2.3, which will help the new Mono meet emissions regs in different territories around the world, according to Briggs Automotive, the company behind BAC. Power is up 27bhp on the Mk1.

The new 2020 BAC Mono: the design story

Less is definitely more here, and the styling department have attempted to reduce the visual mass of the Mono. If bodywork isn’t needed, it’s jettisoned in the name of featherweight dieting. 

‘The design team’s overall brief was to make the car visually lighter, cleaner and more simplistic,’ the company says. The new Mono 2 is a considerable 20mm lower than its predecessor, as well as 25mm longer, with more aerodynamic front wheel arches and wider side pods.

New BAC Mono rear view

Note also the super-lightweight wheels, which weigh just 2.2kg each thanks to a new computer modelling programme designed to carve out mass but retain core strength. And the carbonfibre bodywork now incorporates graphene for super-strong panels.

Forty separate components are 3D printed on the BAC Mono, including the light surrounds, mirror arms and hinge mechanisms. 

The boss speaks

Neill Briggs, BAC’s director of product development, said: ‘The success of the first-generation Mono was beyond our wildest dreams and we can’t wait for even more success with the new model in brand new territories around the globe. This is a stunning new generation of an automotive icon and an exciting new way for us to take on the world.’

This or a Caterham or an Ariel? Be sure to sound off in the comments below. And read on for the last iteration of the Mono – the 2019 R spec, which paved the way for the 2020 overhaul.

Setting the tone: the earlier 2019 BAC Mono R

BAC Mono R

The BAC Mono just got more extreme. The car above is the Mono R – something BAC says is the second generation of its hardcore, road-legal single-seater. It was revealed at the 2019 Goodwood Festival of Speed.

The Liverpool-based brand even boasts that the new car is ‘the new reference’ point for the automotive industry. Big talk.

BAC Mono R: the engine

The ‘Gen2’ Mono is powered by a 2.5-litre Mountune turbo four-cylinder with 340bhp – 35bhp more than before. Tweaks like increasing the cylinder bore, a sharper throttle response, a redline increase from 7800rpm to 8800rpm and a Formula 3-spec ram air jet (no, that’s not a bazooka on the side) are responsible for the power increase.

That punch means the Mono R can hit 62mph in 2.5 seconds and blast onto a top speed of 170mph. BAC says its new car has a power-to-weight figure of 612bhp-per-tonne.

How does it manage that?

By being 25kg lighter than before. The regular Mono wasn’t exactly portly, but this new R weighs in at just 555kg. It’s worth stopping and reflecting on that achievement, in an age where many family cars tip the scales at one-and-a-half tonnes and beyond…

3D-printed parts, magnesium components in the transmission, titanium exhaust system and, most crucially, graphene-infused carbonfibre in the chassis help to shave that much weight off.

Mono R side jet

Besides the ram air jet, the overall design is curvier too, with the new ‘shark nose’ front end being the most noticeable tweak if you park an R next to an older Mono. All of the surfacing was redesigned from scratch, and BAC says it’s 20mm lower but 25mm longer.

Sign me up!

Hold your horses… BAC has only announced a production run of just 30, priced at £190,950 a pop. Said production run has already sold out, as BAC decided to flog them all to existing Mono owners, which we can’t quite understand the logic of. Happily, the new 2020 Mono will be more widely available.

Check our Goodwood FoS preview

By Tim Pollard

Editorial director of CAR's digital publishing arm. Motoring news magnet