No Grinnall Scorpion review would be complete without first addressing the biggest reason many people will simply overlook it when looking for a kit car to assemble or drive…the fact that it has a wheel missing. That’s right, this stunning piece of automotive art is a three wheeler.
A reverse trike if you want to be more precise, as it has two wheels up front and the single wheel at the rear. This makes it more stable than if the setup was the other way round. Think back to the humble Reliant Robin if you want to compare!
However, over the next few paragraphs and on watching the video, I hope to change your mind once and for all. See, the Scorpion III is what a sports car should be – blisteringly fast, handles like a dream and simply great fun.
Don’t get me wrong, as an all-rounder, the Grinnall fails miserably. It only has two seats, so the school run will be limited to just one kid. Its low slung chassis makes it a poor selection for off-road antics and the lack of comprehensive weather protection will put most people off driving across the country during heavy rain or snow.
But as a thrill inducing weekend warrior the feisty Grinnall has it all in spades. With storage space for a couple of bags, you can be flashing along leafy country roads and on to your favourite weekend getaway, leaving the city in your wake.
The Scorpion III is powered by a BMW K series motorcycle engine through the shaft drive to a squat rear tyre that takes it from 0-60mph in about 4 seconds. Now while you may not want to drag start from the lights every time you set off, having this sort of performance under the hood is a reassurance when overtaking.
Top speed is reputed to be over 130mph but as the vehicle is so low slung, with your backside skimming above the road surface by just inches, you can be sure that whatever speed you are doing, it will feel much faster.
Gear changing is slick and smooth through the 5-speed or 6-speed sequential box, depending on the options chosen. The newer K40 powered Scorpions all have a 6-speed box that doesn’t feature a reverse – so be careful where you park!
Handling and Roadholding
The power is kept under control by a polyester powder coated steel tubed space frame and double wishbone front suspension that boasts inboard concentric coil springs and dampers. The rear end in kept under control via the standard BMW rear swing arm.
Thanks to its very low centre of gravity and wide squat profile, the Scorpion hugs the road while the light responsive rack and pinion steering column delivers smooth and reliable feedback as you flick effortlessly through the bends. This really is a drivers car.
When it comes to putting your hand in your pocket, you have a wide range of options. A starter kit is available from around 2 grand while a fully finished turnkey vehicle will cost from around 20,000GBP. Of course, your final price tag will depend on exactly what YOU want your car to be, so you are advised to check out with Grinnall for an up to date price breakdown.
One important point worth mentioning is that the manufacturers have a comprehensive catalogue of modifications available for disabled drivers. This alone indicates to me that Grinnall are serious about their vehicles and seem very easy to talk to, whatever your particular needs or requirements may be.