Getting an open-wheel single-seater race car titled for street use in America is nearly impossible. Unless you’re in line for a Mercedes-AMG One, the next best thing is the BAC Mono, which is manufactured in strictly limited numbers in England. Finding one is difficult, but there’s a 3,000-mile example listed for sale on Cars & Bids.
BAC stands for Briggs Automotive Company, and it’s not a household name unless you’re well-versed in small, obscure car manufacturers based across the pond. Formed by two brothers in 2009, its goal was to create what it describes as “a road vehicle that offers the most authentic and pure driving experience possible while implementing the very latest racing technology.” Using an existing chassis was out of the question. BAC developed the Mono in-house on a blank slate, and it enlists the help of over 100 suppliers (95% of them British) to secure parts.
Carbon fiber keeps the Mono’s weight down to about 1,200 pounds, while a pushrod-style suspension system on both axles helps it deliver the kind of handling only race car pilots are normally acquainted with. If it rains, drive faster or wait it out in a dry spot; there are no wipers because there is no windshield, and a roof isn’t available.
The Mono’s engine comes from Ford, though it takes a trip through the Cosworth workshop before settling in ahead of the rear axle. It’s a 2.3-liter four-cylinder that provides around 280 horsepower and 207 pound-feet of torque, and it’s bolted to a six-speed sequential gearbox that the driver must shift manually using paddles on the steering wheel. Note newer models use a different 2.3-liter Ford four that’s turbocharged to comply with emissions standards.
The example currently live on auction platform Cars & Bids was manufactured in 2014, shipped to the United States, and finally completed in 2017, which is the year listed on the title. It shows about 3,000 miles on a digital instrument cluster embedded into the steering wheel, and it’s unmodified with the exception of a red exterior wrap. Built for serious track use, it’s equipped with AP Racing brake calipers gripping carbon ceramic rotors, an adjustable suspension system, an exhaust system made with Inconel, and a five-point harness provided by Williams. It’s the opposite of a regular road car: its seat is fixed, but its braking bias can be adjusted by the driver.
Bidding is up to $42,068 as of writing with about five days left on the clock (four days as of publishing). We suggest adding this Mono to your watch list if you’re in the market for one; a little over 100 have been made since production started in 2011 so used examples rarely come up for sale, especially with an American title that’s ready to be transferred to the next owner. Bust out the measuring tape before placing a bid, though. The seat was made for a driver that measures between 5’7″ and 5’10” with an inseam of 32 inches or less. If you’re tall, or if your legs are long, you might not fit. BAC has never crowed itself a champion of practicality, but it released a variant of the Mono that’s a few inches wider in 2016.