Caterham has a new owner

British track-car specialist Caterham has been sold to VT Holdings, the company responsible for the sale of Caterham cars in Japan.

VT Holdings sells about 120 Caterhams in Japan annually and has approximately 200 showrooms, where it also sells products from Lotus, Royal Enfield, and other brands.

The company is also run by a former racing driver, Kazuho Takahashi, who has previously competed in Super GT and the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Caterham Super Seven 1600

Caterham’s current lineup consists of a range of models all based on the iconic Lotus Seven platform. Its most recent addition was the retro-inspired Super Seven 1600 launched a year ago.

In a statement made Tuesday confirming VT Holdings’s acquisition of Caterham, Takahashi said he saw his company as a custodian of Caterham, and that he will “protect and develop the Seven to meet the legislative challenges that lie ahead.”

Caterham’s previous owner was a consortium led by Malaysian businessman Tony Fernandes, CEO of budget airline AirAsia. Fernandes and his partners wanted to turn Caterham into a more mainstream brand by adding a sports car and eventually a crossover. The sports car was jointly developed with the Alpine 110 but canceled once Caterham started to experience money issues caused by a disastrous Formula One stint. Under Fernandes, Caterham entered Formula One in 2012 but pulled out after its team went bankrupt at the end of the 2014 season.

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