At first I don’t want to drive it but just soak up its appearance and engineering instead. Its wafer-thin aluminium body is simply gorgeous, the quality of its simple chassis just outstanding. They’re such sticklers for accuracy, it still has points ignition and a dynamo instead of an alternator. It may have been built in the 21st century, but the look, sound and feel is identical to the cars raced by Stirling Moss and Archie Scott Brown, the great 1950s driver who made Lister’s name. 

The cockpit is tight but, if you’re a Lister customer, they will position the pedals and steering wheel where you like. Fed by three twin-choke Weber carburettors, the engine blasts into life at first twist of the key and settles into a gruff, rough idle. 

We set off, me noting how soft it seems and how good the ride is despite its race suspension, wondering how it will feel when the roads clear. Happily, I do not have long to wait. 

It offers total sensory immersion at the first proper press of the pedal: you hear the engine snarl, see the horizon leap towards you, feel the car lunge forward and smell incinerated hydrocarbons. The four-speed ’box is slow but accurate, the engine flexible below 3000rpm but really only on song thereafter. But when it’s pulling hard – well, you’d never credit a 60-year-old design with performance like this. 

It handles beautifully, too. The grip levels of its old-school Dunlop racing crossplies are easily exceeded but, unlike a modern slick or track-day tyre, they’re designed to work with a slip angle, which is why old racing cars are always seen drifting. On the road, it is set up not to understeer but to operate within a delicious window ranging from essentially neutral to mild oversteer. The brakes, devoid of servo assistance, have the best pedal feel of any car with a numberplate I have driven. If it has a problem, it’s that it’s almost impossible to drive slowly. It’s tractable and tolerant enough, but you can think only of the adventure you’re missing, like going on safari and never leaving your room. What’s more, because it is narrow and light, you can use it with confidence on the public roads for which it was never designed, far more so than, say, an Aventador. 

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