Liverpool has been one of the fastest growing cities in the UK over the last ten years, so perhaps it’s not surprising that one of the world’s fastest cars is now accelerating out of the blocks from Merseyside. BAC, or Briggs Automotive Company to give its full name, makes the Mono – the world’s first road legal single-seat super car.
The company itself is just over three years old, and already has won numerous awards for innovation. It recently also won the Business is GREAT campaign’s GREAT Face of the Festival competition, in association with BT. This competition identified innovative and exciting small and medium-sized businesses in the north-west and ties into the International Festival for Business (IFB), which runs until the end of July.
The development of the Mono was led by brothers and automotive engineers Ian and Neill Briggs, who believed that an ultra-lightweight design could be the basis for a new niche super car that combined the technology and performance of a race car while being sympathetic to the demands of road use.
The proof of the pudding, of course, is in the driving. It has a top speed of 170mph and can go from 0 to 60mph in 2.8 seconds. The Mono’s performance on street and track has won numerous awards; it was even declared by Top Gear “Stig’s Car of the Year,” notching up the second fastest time for a production car on the TV programme’s “power lap.”
But the BAC story is not just about the creation of an exhilaratingly fast car.
This is a business that is working hard to build exports and skills and developing strong relationships with the local community.
The launch of the car has whipped up an export storm. Dealer agreements have been struck across four continents to create an order book in excess of 200 cars. BAC is receiving export support from United Kingdom Trade and Investment (UKTI).
Space and capacity constraints at BAC’s initial facility meant the company had to move to a larger, dedicated factory. That was facilitated last summer when BAC secured support from Liverpool City Council’s Mayoral Investment Fund.
The renovated facility now operates as BAC’s global headquarters, with a show room, offices and 11,000 sq ft of manufacturing, logistics and service space. Up to 60 jobs are expected to be created at BAC over the next five years and more than 100 further jobs in the supply chain. An apprenticeship scheme is starting this year.
Activity is under way to strengthen the company’s local supplier base. More than 30 per cent of the Mono’s components by value are locally sourced and BAC plans to increase this percentage further.
As a supporter of Business in the Community, BAC regularly showcases the car at various schools and educational centres to inspire future generations of local engineers, designers and entrepreneurs.
“The government support we have received has meant that we have been able to move forward with our growth and exporting plans,” says managing director Neill Briggs.
“We’re proud to be a Liverpool-based company flying the flag for UK business globally.”
Watch this 30-minute video of the Briggs brothers and their development of the Mono in this video.