If you didn't think BAC could make the Mono any better, you were wrong.
Andrew KrokReviews Editor / Cars
Cars are Andrew's jam, as is strawberry. After spending years as a regular ol' car fanatic, he started working his way through the echelons of the automotive industry, starting out as social-media director of a small European-focused garage outside of Chicago. From there, he moved to the editorial side, penning several written features in Total 911 Magazine before becoming a full-time auto writer, first for a local Chicago outlet and then for CNET Cars.
The BAC Mono is part of a weird corner of the automotive industry that makes race cars legal enough to be driven on the road. It's an absolutely wild car, and now, at the 2019 Goodwood Festival of Speed, there's a new one that's even more bonkers than the car that preceded it.
BAC on Thursday unveiled the new Mono R, heralding the second generation of the company's road-legal track toy. It's lighter than before, but it's also more powerful than before, which means its performance should easily trounce its forebear.
The whole package weighs just 1,224 pounds in its R form, which is ridiculously light and also some 55 pounds lighter than the standard Mono. All that weight savings comes from a confluence of lightweight parts, including a magnesium chassis, magnesium transmission parts, carbon-ceramic brakes, a titanium exhaust system, lighter AP Racing brakes and a carbon fiber floor. The body panels are also made of carbon fiber.
Watch this: BAC Mono R unveiled at 2019 Goodwood Festival of Speed
Speaking of the body panels, the new Mono doesn't look too different compared to its predecessor, sporting the same wildly styled look that's more at home on a racing circuit than your local village road. But BAC has paid extra attention to the aerodynamics, growing wider side pods while improving the efficiency of its rear wing. LED headlights up front keep things nice and bright, because when you're going that fast, you need all the help you can get. (Maybe save the high-speed antics for the daytime.)
Under the body is a 2.5-liter I4 producing about 340 horsepower, about 35 more than the standard Mono. That extra power comes from a larger cylinder bore, a shorter crankshaft stroke, a new air intake, revised throttle bodies and a tweaked cylinder head. It should be even better to drive, too, thanks to revised suspension geometry that reduces body movements under braking and a gas tank that helps lower the center of gravity closer to the core of the planet.
If you're looking at this and thinking, "Man, I need one," I hate to say it but you're out of luck. Only 30 BAC Mono R models will be built, and all of them were offered to existing Mono owners around the world, so they're now sold out. Better luck next time?