Robert Bowen
Robert Bowen
7/17/18 2:56 p.m.

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Think that’s an Ariel Atom? Look closer. It’s actually a custom creation hand-built by Jon Winterhalter in his normal suburban garage. While the English mid-engined sports car was the inspiration for Jon’s near-replica, he says he’s never seen an Atom in the flesh.

That little inconvenience didn’t stop him, though. In this Internet age, Atom owners proud of their $50,000 purchases have posted enough high-resolution photos for Jon to create his own scale drawings and build an almost perfect replica.

This amazing car is not, however, the result of beginner’s luck. Jon built a Lotus 7-like Locost a few years ago and entered it in the Grassroots Motorsports $2005 Challenge. It was even featured in a few other mainstream car magazines.

With that challenge behind him, Jon wanted something more impressive and a little more difficult for his next project. One of those high-resolution Atom pictures gave him the idea for this build.

“I liked the distinctive look of the curved tubes and wanted a bigger challenge than building another Seven-type car,” Jon explains. “But honestly, after building my first car I was not afraid, not surprised by anything. I knew I could build this one.”

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