BBC Autos

Magnum MK5: Canada’s new track weapon

Four-hundred sixty horsepower per tonne. Zero to 62mph in 3.2 seconds. A top speed of 150mph and over 2g of lateral cornering force. Enough fastness, then, to outpace even the sprightliest grizzly bear. Meet Canada's latest track-day lightweight, the Magnum MK5.

It's made by a man named Bruno, whose father Jean-Pierre built Magnum's first formula racer in the late 1960s. This MK5, then, has been a long time coming. It's built for the track but is actually street-legal, much like our favourite lung-crusher, the BAC Mono. Size-wise, think a slightly swollen Lotus Elise.

The Magnum MK5 features a mid-mounted 250bhp four-cylinder engine that revs to a dizzy 11,000rpm – that'll be a bike engine, then – that feeds the rear wheels through a six-speed sequential gearbox activated by a centre-mounted shifter. There's also a limited slip differential and F1-style pushrod suspension with two-way adjustable dampers front and rear. 

A weight of just 545kg (1,202lbs) results in that healthy power-to-weight ratio, and reduces the strain on those four-piston calipers and ventilated discs – complete with a custom pedal box and cockpit-adjustable brake bias, hidden under 18in lightweight alloys.

There's functional aero on the carbon fibre composite bodywork, while inside you get racing carbon fibre seats, six-point harnesses and a suede-wrapped steering wheel with GPS with mounted lap-timer. Serious stuff.

Prices start at $139,000 excluding taxes and deliver. That's a lot more than an Ariel Atom but a lot less than a BAC Mono.

A version of this story originally appeared on TopGear.com.