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About tough to crack puzzle #166: MGA Special by Panelcraft

About tough to crack puzzle #166: MGA Special by Panelcraft
Our puzzle number 166 was quite a lot tougher than expected, or so it seems. We received one (1!) answer from regular Fried Stohl, counting a beautiful one hundred words exactly and giving all the information hoped for. He wrote: “First thoughts were Triumph TR4 (rims) or even a Sunbeam Alpine. In the end it appeared to be a MG MGA twin cam L4, seen here on a test day in 1960 at the Goodwood circuit. Design came from the D.N. Stephenson project and custom coachwork was done by FLM Panelcraft of London. Registration number 97 PPA. According to the MGAguru.com in 2011 it stated ‘after the test the team celebrated the completion and had one too many’, so the car was wrecked into a railway bridge, the remains were then destroyed in a fire at a MGA club member.”

Well, although a sad end, it’s at least known now! See the source that Fried found here to read a bit more about the car’s unhappy end. Before you start with adding that it’s better for this car to have ended this way, we wanted to let you know once more that we encourage every form of automobile individualism. And so we can only endorse an article from The Autocar magazine, who wrote about the Panelcraft bodied car as ‘An MGA with an attitude’. Oh - congratulations Fried. Well done once again!

(Words editor, pictures Ludvigsen library/The Autocar)

  

Saturday, 09 September 2017

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Back to back Goodwood Girls edition: Jaguar or Maserati?

Back to back Goodwood Girls edition: Jaguar or Maserati?
Over to Goodwood, where the action takes place this weekend during the Revival meeting. It’s the world’s largest historic motor racing festival with some 150,000 visitors attending, the majority of them dressed in period in order to create ‘A magical step back in time celebrating the halcyon days of motor racing’.

But while the pit street, paddock, track, car parks and all the roads to and from the circuit are brimming with classics, you’ll find some of today’s motor manufacturers here, too. A good thing? Some of it seems quite exiting. TVR has announced to come back to life once more and chose the Goodwood Revival to launch the latest reincarnation of their sports car (much more here). Bruce McLaren is being celebrated with a parade of 30 cars from his career, but the manufacturer will definitely take the chance to show some of their more current models. Daughter Amanda is likely to be driving one. And she’s won’t be the only girl attending. May we present to you the Goodwood girls from Maserati and Jaguar that were showing off last year? And now that we got your attention; may we also ask which of the two groups will draw you towards their display? And eventually perhaps towards the purchase of a brand new car, too..?

(Words editor, pictures Maserati and Jaguar PR)

Friday, 08 September 2017

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Monte Carlo majesty

Monte Carlo majesty
Several cars have been graced with the ‘Monte Carlo’ designation, but not many of them were as elegant as the Ford Comète Monte Carlo. The car can in fact be named as the forerunner of the great Facel-Vegas of the late 1950s, as the idea for a French-built Grand Tourer sprung from the mind of industrialist and Facel-Vega instigator Jean Daninos. First he teamed up with Pininfarina to build a small series of the Bentley Cresta. A beautiful car, for sure, but perhaps not quite French enough?

Enter the Ford Comète, launched in Paris in 1951. This was a French Ford unlike any other. Using the Flat head V8 engine of 2.2 litre that the Ford Vedette used, too, it was powerful. But using a Daninos-supervised Pininfarina-inspired coupe-body of aluminium made it one of the prettiest car France saw in the early 1950s. What was next? It was the Monte Carlo version, launched in Brussels in 1954. Now with truck-sourced Ford V8 of 3.9 litres capacity, it was more powerful and quicker, also due to a new gearbox. And then there was the added luxury. Wire wheels, chromed grille aperture (dubbed ‘coupe-frites’ by the French who saw it as a (French) fry cutter), air intake on the bonnet (no function though), gorgeous dash in stainless steel and lovely leather interior.

It was not meant to be, though, as the Monte Carlo proved to be way too expensive at its time. And despite its name it wasn't very succesful at the Monte Carlo Rallye either. By October 1955 Simca had taken over Ford of France and the model was dropped. Less than 800 Monte Carlos were built. Just 30 are believed to survive in France. There is one for sale at the moment in lovely two-tone yellow and black with a black leather interior. An excellent example of the breed, fully restored by its previous owner. See it for sale here.

(Words editor, picture PostWarClassic)

Thursday, 07 September 2017

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Tobacco and T-Ford parts in Rhodesia

c.1950 Chevrolet 3-ton truck
Reader Andre found another African image that he'd like to share with us, which we quite like. He wrote: "This picture shows a Chevrolet 3-ton truck of around 1950, being loaded at a rural tobacco farm in Southern Rhodesia (Zimbabwe). The load mainly consists of tobacco bales, but on top of the bales, near the front, appears to be a back axel and silencer of a Model T - Ford. Other machinery is also being loaded for repair in Salisbury (Harare). The bales are being send to be sold at the tobacco auction house in the capital." Now, we love it when there's so much detail from a picture. Places, faces, background and even recognition of those old parts. Oh - and it's good to know that even in Rhodesia in the 1950s people were caring about classics, too, isn't it? Feel free to share your (pictorial) memories with us, too!

Wednesday, 06 September 2017

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