This car was built by two guys from the Oneonta, New York area in the mid fifties. They began with a 1941 Oldsmobile frame shortened 18 inches, and a small diameter tube frame was built to hold the hand formed aluminum body. The racer was built using an Olds Flathead 6 but soon was replaced with a Olds 394 CID Rocket V-8 sporting three Stromberg 97 carbs, and fitted with a 1963 Corvette transmission purchased new from the local Chevy Dealer. The car retains this drivetrain along with the hand fabricated exhaust system. Read More
Well, this is a first for us at Mint. Although it isn’t a real Gordini, it is the next best thing. The Renault R8 succeeded the Dauphine but shared the same concept of lightweight, rear engine and rear wheel drive. The folks at Renault knew racing sells cars so they latched on to Gordini to help them prepare performance models and win races. Sort of like a French Carroll Shelby. And boy were they successful. Renaults were the giant killers of the day along with the Mini Coopers with an opposite engineering strategy. Read More
The first Turner models were produced between 1951 and 1966 by Turner Sports Cars Ltd, a company established by Jack Turner in England. Turners were available in kit form and as complete cars. In 1966, the company closed, after the founder had a heart attack. These Turners are terrific vintage racers and an excellent way to get into the sport. The drivetrain is pretty simple and the body design is pleasant. You could buy a competitive MG or Triumph for similar money – around $20 grand, but the Turner will stand out on the starting grid. Read More
As a member of the VSCCA and because of our close proximity to Lime Rock Park Race Track, we get to see quite a few 356 Comp cars. They are all pretty terrific and one might say, they are right at home and definitely where they belong when they scoot by on the track. But esthetically, some are just way cooler than others. That doesn’t mean they are faster or the driver is more skilled, it means the owner cares about what things look like too. All of the architects we know are like that. Every decision is based on what it looks like and does it contribute to the overall success of the project. So when we spotted this 356A Competition car we stopped in our tracks. Read More
Why would we feature a Datsun 510 Tribute racer on Mint? Well because the BRE team was really good at building competitive cars and Pete Brock, the founder of BRE, was one important car guy. At the age of 19, Brock was the youngest designer ever hired by GM Styling. In November of 1957, Brock drew the sketch which GM VP of Design Bill Mitchell picked off the wall to become the next Corvette, the Stingray. Read More
This isn’t just any old drag racer, it is The Termite. Now if that doesn’t strike fear in the hearts of those or us who live in wood houses, we don’t know what will. This is a racer that qualifies for any historic racing events but it is best suited for events that go in a straight line and don’t last too long. Read More
The most beautiful car ever designed looks good as a race car too. Today’s featured Jag is similar to the one we featured last week. Although this one is capable of being driven on the street. Wow! To be honest, we don’t know how truthful that statement is. It has a cut-down racing windscreen with no wipers and god knows what else you need to drive on the street. But the thought of doing it is kind of neat. Read More
California-based Aldin ‘Red’ LeGrand was a senior mechanical engineer in the aerospace industry who built a series of cars that bore his name. His first creation was a Renault-based racing special which was completed in the very early 1960s. His second car was called the Cheetah which was designed to compete in Formula 4. The Formula 4 series never really caught on. LeGrand used an air-cooled BMW 700cc engine and transaxle for his car. Read More
In November of 1934 Maytag began selling their toy racer to dealers for promotional purposes. They were used in campaigns to lure parents in for demonstrations of their laundry machines. Many of these Maytag Toy Racers were given away in local contests. Others were retained by regional managers or local dealers for use in parades or to give rides in payment for children distributing their sales literature. The company manufactured nearly five hundred toy racers that demonstrated the power of Maytag Multi-Motors and helped convince the public of the quality of Maytag washers. The Multi-Motor is a single cylinder unit but later models than this featured racer had twin cylinder Multi-Motors. The seller had a MayTag store and presumably, was the recipient of the racer back in the day. It was totally restored and placed in a plexiglass display case. It is in perfect condition. Click here for the eBay auction.
The terrific part of our hobby is competition. Those of us who love old cars have a secret passion for competition. While some feed that passion with a trip to a Concours, others take the gritty route of racing. Racing has diversity within the category. It can be on a track or off. The track stuff speaks for itself. You bring a race car to a track, pass safety and scrutineering and off you go. Of course, you need a license and a modicum of skill. But it isn’t always about winning. Read More
Panhard was one of the oldest names in car manufacturing, dating back to 1872. By 1955 they had lost their upmarket image and had to be rescued by Citroen, who eventually bought them in 1965. Their post-war design, the Dyna, featured a jewel of a little 848cc air-cooled flat twin, pushing out over 60 Hp in stock trim. The firm of DB, (Deutsch-Bonnet, the full names of the owners being dropped to avoid anti-German post-war sentiment) used this wonderful engine as the heart of their advanced sports coupe, designed for endurance racing. Read More
We like the Northwest. It gave us the 747 and Starbucks. The folks up there are really cool and keep their cars in one piece. Our Mercedes 230S came from Seattle, so we know from experience. And they have their own group of vintage racers out there – SOVREN, Society Of Vintage Racing Enthusiasts. A great group of enthusiasts and they do great philanthropy so we are told. If you want to play with them you need a car. A really neat car – one you can see in the fog and drizzle.