The World of Motorsport had all eyes on the first day of Autosport International 2014 as a range of major projects broke cover at the NEC in Birmingham.
Over 30,000 motorsport professionals are expected to attend the show, with international guests joining the British motorsport community to kick 2014 off in the best fashion possible. Doors open to the public tomorrow (Saturday).
The extent of motorsport to the UK economy was highlighted with the release of new data about its growth. Figures compiled and released by the Motorsport Industry Association show that Britain’s Motorsport Valley generated £9billion in sales in 2012, up £4.6billion since 2000.
“Our motorsport industry represents some of the best of British talent and ingenuity and it is imperative that we provide the right conditions so it continues to thrive,” said Business Minister Michael Fallon. “That is why we are investing £1 billion jointly with industry to ensure companies across the automotive sector have the support they need to develop the technologies of the future.”
A number of new projects were also unveiled at the show, including Zenos Cars’ first model, the E10. Zenos marks the new venture for former Caterham Cars CEO Ansar Ali and COO Mark Edwards, with the E10 being a track-focused, road legal open-top, two seater powered by a 200bhp engine, weighing just 650kg and covering 0-60mph in under five seconds. The car will be available from just £24,995.
“It’s been a huge day for Zenos Cars,” co-founder Ali said. “As a major event for the UK sports car industry, Autosport International is a great place to make the E10’s presence known. We’re really glad to be here, and hopefully by the end of the four days more people will be familiar with the Zenos brand.”
Local race preparation company JRM also took the opportunity to unveil a brand-new Group N specification WRX STI rally car at the show, signalling a partnership with Subaru Tecnica International, Subaru’s motorsport arm. Meanwhile, Ford introduced the Radical RXC Turbo, following the launch of the RXC twelve months earlier.
“It’s been a fantastic day to start Autosport International 2014, with a host of major projects among the new technology on display and members of the global motorsport industry on hand,” said Ian France, Autosport International Show Director. “As evidenced by the latest figures released by the MIA documenting the on-going growth of the UK motorsport sector, the industry is in a very healthy state and that’s represented by the atmosphere within halls at the show about the year ahead.”