As the VUHL 05, Lotus 3-Eleven and Caterham Seven chase this race-helmet owner group, Americans have a very compelling alternative to consider. And this one is road-legal and costs just a slice of the price.
Running on three wheels makes the Slingshot a motorcycle — but that is only the start of the intrigue. From the design outside, people will be shocked by the sci-fi beauty and exposed chassis first. Only on third or fourth glance will they not see a stunning, Lambo-meets-Batman mashup.
Polaris really aced the look of this car. The sharp flow of body color into the front bumper splitter is addictive from all angles. The quad lighting is elegant and functional — and far more modern than the giant sealed-beam lamps preferred by Morgan on the Three-Wheeler. Or Caterham via their new USA sales arrangement with Superformance.
There is a real beauty to the long-hood feel of the SlingShot in profile, and the way its slimline grille with central lamps sinks below the painted leading edges of the vehicle.
Versus the cheapest of the competitive set mentioned above, the Slingshot’s $20k base price is even more impressive. A 1.0-liter Suzuki triple forms the base Caterham, which is delivered ready-to-drive stateside from about $48,000.
The loaded SL LE is the hottest of the Slingshot lineup — and even this is just $24,999. Best of all, the car’s handling and performance.
A super-cut steering wheel has just three spokes — a bit larger than a racecar but same futuristic hunter/killer design feel as the rest of the machine. Painted dash cowls create a freakily open mood on the road. You might be tempted to graze the pavement with fingers as you fire around corners.
Performance for the SlingShot SL LE is not officially available — but a 5.0-second sprint is widely cited online. Check out a full-throttle launch below. The Slingshot is peeling out all through first and second gear!
173 ponies from a 2.4-liter four-cylinder in the Slingshot is ripe for improvements via the aftermarket.
While the Slingshot cant (yet) match the $100k VUHL 05’s 3.7-second sprint to 60, and the hard specs of weight and power outputs shade many trad UK track stars.
The final treat is that the single rear wheel makes the Slingshot extremely playful when you want to get wild in corners. Less overall grip in back paired with a rock-solid front race suspension is the best way to make any driver a driftmaster in no time.
Our wishlist for the Slingshot configurator? A few more colors and perhaps some graphic body wraps. Optional HID or LED lighting up front would be handy for buyers as well. Some sweet LEDs in a box shape would make this nose even meaner.
2015 Polaris Slingshot SL LE
2015 Polaris Slingshot SL LE
US MSRP Starting At
Plus Freight & Set up
OWN THE ROAD AND STEAL THE SHOW
Slingshot® SL LE
|DIMENSIONS / CAPACITIES|
|Dry Weight||1684 lbs.|
|Curb Weight||1743 lbs.|
|Overall Length (in/mm)||149.6 in/3800 mm|
|Overall Width (in/mm)||77.6 in/1960 mm|
|Overall Height (in/mm)||51.9 in/1318 mm|
|Track Width (in/mm)||69.1 in/1755 mm|
|Wheelbase (in/mm)||105.0 in/2667 mm|
|Ground Clearance (in/mm)||5.0 in/127 mm|
|Displacement (cid/cc)||2384 cc|
|Bore and Stroke||88mm x 98m|
|Valve Train||DOHC, VVT|
|Fuel||91 octane or higher|
|Rev Limit (RPM)||7000 RPM|
|Peak Power (HP)||173 HP @ 6200 RPM|
|Peak Torque (ft-lbs)||166 ft-lbs @ 4700 RPM|
|Fuel (Gallons/Liters)||9.77 Gallons / 37.1 Liters|
|Brake Rotors (Front)||Vented, 298mm diameter|
|Brake Rotors (Rear)||Vented, 298mm diameter|
|WHEELS AND TIRES|
|Front Tire Type||Kenda 799|
|Front Tire Size||225/45R18|
|Front Wheel Type||Forged; 10 Spoke|
|Front Wheel Size||18×7.5 J|
|Rear Tire Type||Kenda 799|
|Rear Tire Size||255/35R20|
|Rear Wheel Type||Forged; 10 Spoke|
|Rear Wheel Size||20×9.0 J|
|Clutch Type||Dry, Single Plate, Hydraulically Actuated|
|Transmission Type||5 Speed Synchromesh with Reverse|
|1st Gear Ratio||3.753:1|
|2nd Gear Ratio||2.258:1|
|3rd Gear Ratio||1.512:1|
|4th Gear Ratio||1.000:1|
|5th Gear Ratio||.729:1|
|Reverse Gear Ratio||3.672:1|
|Gear Shift Pattern||H|
|Bevel Drive Ratio||2.312:1|
|Final Drive Type||Carbon Fiber Reinforced Belt, 36mm x 147T|
|Final Drive Ratio||1.590:1|
|Assist||Polaris EPAS, Speed Sensitive|
|Steering Turns, lock-to-lock||3.2|
|Headlight||2x Projector Hi/Lo H9 65w (Center)|
|Auxiliary Light||2x Projector H3 55w (Outboard)|
|License Plate Light||LED|
|Speedometer & Indicator Lights||LED|
|ABS (Anti-Lock Brakes)||Standard|
|ESC (Electronic Stability Control)||Standard|
|Factory Warranty||2 Years|
Tom Burkart is the founder and managing editor of Car-Revs-Daily.com, an innovative and rapidly-expanding automotive news magazine.
He holds a Journalism JBA degree from the University of Wisconsin – Madison. Tom currently resides in Charleston, South Carolina with his two amazing dogs, Drake and Tank.
Mr. Burkart is available for all questions and concerns by email Tom(at)car-revs-daily.com.