Monday, February 28, 2011

Marcos Mantis

This has to be a Marmite car, you love its obscure styling or you’re sick to your stomach. Produced in 1968, the Mantis was even sold in a kit form from 1971. Which, reading between the lines mean there were alot of spare parts lying around the factory, needing to be put together!!!!! Powered by a 2.5 litre Triumph TR6 six cylinder injected engine with 150bhp, at the time it was up there with its contemporaries, however it was expensive £3,185 (At this time the V8 Rover 3500 came with a UK sticker price of £2,150 including sales taxes.). Due to its looks and price, its reported that only 32 left the factory between 1970 and 71 when production ceased.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Crossley/Burney Streamliner

Originally built as a full streamliner by Streamliner Cars Ltd, owned by Sir Dennistoun Burney the designer of the airship R100, Crossley adopted the car design and gave it a little make over in the process. Namely a more conventional nose housing the radiator etc and put its Silver 6 cylinder 2ltr engine out the back, producing 60bhp and would power this car up to 80mph. Underneath was encased in steel sheeting to aid aerodynamics. Interestingly the spare wheel was housed inside one of the rear doors with the other again having either another spare or a cocktail cabinet. It also had 7 seats. As these were extremely luxurious cars no 2 were the same, which included the length. In all about 20 were produced in 1934 which is more than the original full streamliner which approximately 12 were built. This car comes from a time when traditional car building met the new wave of aerodynamics and strange halfbreeds were built.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Dubfreeze, Stafford

Okay its that time of the year when over in the UK the show season starts, for the midlands/north thats Dubfreeze. Primarily a swap meet/traders fair catering for the aircooled market it does have some advantages, its indoors and it has a show and shine competitions. Add to this a large car park that the organisers welcome clubs to means a full on unofficial car show ensues with a variety of both air and water cooled cars in attendance-

Saturday, February 19, 2011

1 year old today

Well "The Petrol Stop" is one year old today, and I would like to thank the people who keep coming back who must also enjoy looking at the more unusual and rare cars that were built. So far we've had about 15000 hits which it just fantastic fro across the glode which has really surprised me the most.

I have a list of cars and bikes that will be coming including more F1 cars, Indy cars, an awesome bike manufacture as well as the forgotten and long lost production cars. With the car show season starting in the UK they'll also be slide shows and reports popping up, the first is Dubfreeze tomorrow.

Remember if you like what you see here pass on the link and if you know of something that should be on here let me know.

Thanks again


Friday, February 18, 2011

Chenowth Scorpion DPV (Desert Patrol Vehicle)

If a certain government agency was asked to develop on fast off road vehicle for use in a desert environment in order to get combatants in to an area they shouldn’t be what do you think they would come up with. The answer is the this the Desert Patrol Vehicle, previously name the less politically correct Fast Attack Vehicle, but this was when they were first officially used in the early 90’s for Desert Storm for more discrete operations.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Peugeot 306 Rallye

So what was the quickest 306 of the all, the GTI-6, with its 6 speed box linked to the 167bhp 2ltr engine? It came with all the toys you’d expect from the top spec sports version, electric heated seats, electric windows, leather, fog lights, and electric mirrors. A real contender in the hot hatch arena, however the GTI-6 had a, as Peugeot would put it, more hardcore brother the Rallye. Coming with the same engine and gear box and therefore power it beat the GT1-6 to 60, how it went on a diet, losing all the luxury list above, it weighed in 52kgs lighter which boosted the performance, add into the mix a cheaper price tag and it should have been a winner. However, and I’m guilty of this, it was always seen as the poor man’s GTI-6 rather than the more hardcore version it should have been.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Bricklin SV1

When the actual full name of “Safety Car One” is used, a mid engine, gullwinged doored sports car doesn’t come to mind. But that’s what Canadian car builder Bricklin did. The concept by owner/designer Malcolm Briklin was simple to make the safest car possible. All sounds good except all that safety equipment like inbuilt roll cage, shock absorbing 12mph bumpers, fuel tank protection and side impact protection added weight, alot of weight the SV1 weighed in at 1600kgs. As a result the 175bhp V8 didn’t give the car the go that went with its coupe glass fibre body. The only thing the SV1 didn’t come with was a cigarette lighter and ashtray as Malcolm believed smoking while driving was dangerous. In truth the company ended up selling all of the 2854 cars at a loss or near as damn it.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Lotus Elite

 In the 1970’s Lotus decided to expand its potential market by adding a bigger car to its range. This car would comfortably fit 4 adults and still give that “Lotus” sports car experience. The result was the reimagining of the Elite a “saloon” with 4 seats and a hatchback. In its 8 year run from 1974-82 only 2535 were built. I suppose one of the main reasons for this was the image of Lotus, they built sports cars and people who went to Lotus for a car were looking for that. Another issue could have been the Eclat built between 1975-82, basically a fast back sportier looking version and still with 4 seats. Both were fitted with the same choice of engines including a turbo later on. So out of the 2 the natural tendencies of buyers would be for the Eclat. On the plus side for both, these days they are very affordable alternative Lotus’s, if you don’t mind the questions of “what’s that?” and “that’s not a Lotus”.

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Thursday, February 3, 2011

Straman Honda CRX Convertible

In the early 80’s Honda built the go-kart of a hot hatch the CRX, small powerful and wheels tucked as far into the corners as possible it was a modern drivers car. Straman, a coachbuilder from California renowned for its high quality convertible conversions, decided to take on the CRX. What’s even better this version was available through your local Honda dealer for approximately $5000. Numbers sold seem to revolve around 130 or so between 1984-87, making it a very rare version. It’s one of those love it or hate it cars, for me you can beat the original. But for sheer "build it because we can" attitude I think its great.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Holden EFIJY

So what do you get when an Australian car manufacturer turns to its designers and says make me a concept that harks back to the F J Holden of the 1953, Oh and make it a hot rod reincarnation. You get the EFIJY, a Chevrolet Corvette based one-off custom that takes the technology of our time and wraps it in an image of the past. What sets this apart though seems to be the reason for it, there doesn’t seem to be one i.e. it’s not a new model concept or to try out a new styling on the public, it was built for the sake of being built and it was a long time coming. First sketched in 1989 by Holden Chief Designer and project leader Richard Ferlazzo, it finally came to fruition in 2005 as this pillerless coupe that’s jaw droppingly gorgeous. Powered by what else but a supercharged V8 producing 645bhp and running on air suspension it’s also been built to drive. It’s just a shame these cars have to remain concepts.