The Beast, Tamed: Rezvani’s Custom Car Is Not Just For The Boys

Rezvani Beast

Imagine climbing into this car.

There are no door handles, only a molded, curved sculpture of carbon fiber to glide over on your way into a custom-fitted seat. The car will roar when you fire it up, and your body fits into the interior perfectly, just the way you ordered it.

Only five of these cars have been produced. FIVE. It’s sleek, incredibly lightweight (almost unbelievably so) and simple to maintain. Basically, it is as sharp as a Lamborghini but as easy to own as a Honda Pilot. It’s a Beast.

Ferris Rezvani, president and CEO of Santa Ana-based Rezvani Motors, the company that hand-builds the Beast with a core team of four people, says each vehicle takes over 4,000 hours of work. It sounds like a boy’s toy, but there are women who love this Beast.

Returning to her “sports-car ways”

About a year ago, Chicago businesswoman Terri Gardner, was having a hard time getting to sleep, so she began channel surfing. A feature story about a car caught her eye: It was her first look at the Beast.

“They were taking it off the flatbed, and I thought it was a beautiful car,” says Terri. “Here, it was 2 AM, and I emailed Ferris and said, ‘How can I get one of those?’ A couple of weeks later, I made arrangements to see his shop in California.”

Terri had fallen in love with a Ferrari she once owned. But when her daughter arrived, the Ferrari took a back seat and was garaged for some time. Eventually she decided to trade it for a family-friendly four-door sedan, and she promised herself when her daughter turned 16 she would have a sports car again. Her daughter’s 16th birthday was in September 2015, and Terri ordered the Beast shortly after that.

Every week, Gardner flew out to Santa Ana to see her car in production. Rezvani Motors finished her Beast in January 2016, and one of the first drives she took was to Jay Leno’s garage. Leno is a renowned car collector and broadcast a review of the Rezvani Beast when he took it for a spin. You’ll notice in the video that he points out the custom horn; Gardner requested that her horn play the theme from Jaws. You’re going to need a bigger boat.


Terri Gardner and her canary-yellow Ferrari

Beauty and the Beast

Hand crafted perfection; no detail too small; the essence of beauty fulfilled: women love the Beast for the same reason they love a Birkin bag or brass-studded pair of Valentino heels. Rezvani says, though, that women are sometimes put off by the lack of function: doors that open, a top, air conditioning. However, the fact that every Beast is customized for the exact size and shape of the buyer is an attractive trade-off. Everything is customizable, including color, interior, wheels, and more. Gardner’s Beast is fitted with a clear bra to preserve the paint and finish where she enters the car, and the steering wheel is removable, like a true race car.

Incidentally, the Beast is currently available with automatic transmission for a cool $35,000 added on to your bill. But we wouldn’t recommend it because shifting is half the fun of driving a Beast.

Rezvani Motors is about to unveil their newest Beast, the Alpha, in late October or early November of this year. Beast Alpha will have opening doors, power windows, a removable top, AC, and airbags, all of which the company believes will appeal even more to women.

“The few women you come across who have an appreciation for this kind of car know their stuff,” Terri says. “When I’m sitting in the Beast and someone approaches from the back, they can’t tell who is in it. People are shocked that it’s a lady. I think girls like my daughter’s generation will like cars more and more. With people like Danica Patrick in the public eye, it is becoming more acceptable.”


It’s an Atom…with clothes on

In Jay Leno’s review he reveals that the Beast is an Ariel Atom, the super car that looks more like a go cart with very little framework around it and an exposed engine. However, the Beast has a carbon fiber body and powered by a Rotrex supercharged Honda K24 series I4. “It’s an Arial Atom with clothes on,” Leno says. The Beast is available in two models: a 500-HP Beast S and the Beast X, which boasts 700HP. Priced at about $200K, it’s firmly in the supercar class with the features and muscle to match, but the price point is lower than a Ferrari 458 and a little higher than an Audi R8.

Beasts are not available for a test drive for just anyone; Rezvani says you have to put down a deposit first and then you get your hands on the goods. Since I don’t have a down payment on a Beast any time soon, I’m going to imagine that I’m driving a Lamborghini Aventador, but with about 2500 fewer pounds. Feel the zip. Gardner calls is “torquey”, which means it takes off like a rocket with minimal acceleration. And she says it sounds like an animal, with a throaty growl.

This car is not for someone who doesn’t like to drive. There is no power steering. No power brakes. No ABS. No computer chip to make subtle driving corrections on the fly. Basically, Rezvani set out to build something that was manual in the middle of a computerized age.

What it’s all about: the girl, the car and the road

“Cars today have so much technology,” says Gardner. “In the Beast, you feel very accurately what the wheels and the steering wheel are doing. You have to be a present driver – you can’t just cruise. You drive it.”

Gardner is not your average driver. She says she has been a fan of cars “forever”, and she purchased a Porsche 928 in her mid-20s. She joined a Porsche club in Chicago, and scheduled days at the track with the club. “I had a trailer with a winch in it and if I could sneak away from work, I’d take it to the track,” Gardner says. “I had to trailer it because it wasn’t street legal; I towed it with an old-school Chevrolet Suburban.”


1948 Packard limo Terri Gardner had restored in the 80s. Photo: Terri Gardner

And she’s earned bonus car-fanatic points: she owns a ’48 Packard limo that she had restored.

Gardner'S Beast-Driving Gloves

Gardner’s Beast-driving gloves Photo: Terri Gardner

Yes, it really is easy to care for.

If you are still stuck on the fact that the engine in the Beast is a Honda engine, it’s by design: It makes it relatively inexpensive to maintain and service once it’s in your hands. You could walk into a Honda dealership and get your engine serviced. If you have ever owned a Porsche or Ferrari, you understand the cost difference.

As Terri and I close our conversation, she tells me that she’s heading out to add some miles to her Beast.

“Just about any time I can, I try to drive in it,” she says. “I drive it for what I call my ‘therapy time’; the car is open, so I have this panoramic view. I can see flocks of birds flying over me, and I can see and hear and smell everything more accurately. It’s an invigorating experience in many ways.”

What do you think, ladies? Could you tame the Beast?

Rezvani Beast

Kristin Shaw in the Rezvani Beast. She, too, fell in love at first sight. Photo: Scotty Reiss

Writer. Car fanatic. Mom. Kristin is the co-owner of auto review site Drive Mode Show and a nationally-published writer... More about Kristin Shaw