Au­to­mo­bilia mod­els

C ar­ry­ing on from our fea­ture M3s, we have two drop-top E30 Corgi mod­els fea­tured this month. In the mid 1980s, was there a surer way to show your sud­den growth of wealth than by buy­ing a brand-new BMW? If you re­ally wanted to show the neigh­bours how well

New Zealand Classic Car - - AUTOMOBILIA -

Back to Blighty this month. Built and cat­a­logued by a ma­jor man­u­fac­turer, but a short and in­ter­mit­tent pro­duc­tion run amounted to only 46 units be­tween Novem­ber 1956 and Au­gust 1959.

Send your so­lu­tion to edi­tor@ clas­s­ic­car.co.nz by July 15, with ‘Mys­tery Car245’ in the sub­ject line.

Last month’s mys­tery was a low-drag sport­ing coupé built in small num­bers by Pan­hard. Its pro­duc­tion dates are listed as 1963–’65, and our pic­ture came from the Auto Univer­sum an­nual of 1964, which broadly tal­lies with that. The CD (CD stand­ing for Charles Deutsch, de­signer of the car and an aero­dy­namic spe­cial­ist, plus no doubt an oblique ref­er­ence to Cd — co­ef­fi­cient of drag) was de­vel­oped from the CD sports rac­ing coupé with the 702cc flat-twin Pan­hard en­gine that won the In­dex of Per­for­mance at the 1962 24 Hours of Le Mans race.

Deutsch was an aero­dy­namic wiz­ard, and this pro­duc­tion CD coupé is quoted as hav­ing an ex­tremely low Cd of 0.22. Deutsch’s 1964 CD Le Mans racer (the finned car in the pic) is listed as hav­ing a Cd of 0.12 — in­cred­i­ble.

The pro­duc­tion CD used the usual air-cooled Pan­hard Ti­gre ohv flat-twin en­gine in its 848cc size, with power quoted at 44kw (59hp) for the twin-carb Ral­lye ver­sion. It was FWD, with a four­speed gear­box (early ones very gnarly, later ones slightly bet­ter), and had rack-and-pin­ion steer­ing, with IFS by trans­verse leaf spring, and tor­sion-bar rear suspension, with the rear track con­sid­er­ably nar­rower. This al­lowed Deutsch to slim down the rear body — part of his aero­dy­namic bag of tricks. The dry weight of the CD Ral­lye with its polyester body (four me­tres long) is quoted at 580kg (1279lb). It was a rather noisy and rough-riding ve­hi­cle though, which goes part way to ex­plain­ing why only 159 (or 160) cars were built.

Top speed is quoted at 180kph (112mph) for the Ral­lye ver­sion, an im­pres­sive fig­ure from only 44kw of flat-twin power, and 165kph (102.5mph) for the Grand Tourisme sin­gle-carb model.

Pan­hard had a long his­tory of in­ter­est in low-drag ve­hi­cles, hav­ing built spe­cial record­break­ing sin­gle-seaters with low frontal area in the 1920s and 1930s, then air-smoothed sa­loons in the 1930s, and af­ter WWII, giv­ing fac­tory sup­port to man­u­fac­tur­ers such as Monopole and DB to pro­duce low-drag sports cars with Pan­hard en­gines, be­fore build­ing their own rac­ers in col­lab­o­ra­tion with Charles Deutsch. Their 1950s/60s pro­duc­tion sa­loons and coupés used low-drag bod­ies too, giv­ing them ex­cel­lent fuel econ­omy and high top speeds, pow­ered only by small twin-cylin­der air-cooled boxer en­gines be­tween 610 and 848cc. These cars never achieved big-vol­ume sales, how­ever, and by the 1960s Citroën by de­grees took over the com­pany and ceased Pan­hard car pro­duc­tion in 1967.

At last we can in­form you of a win­ner for one of our re­cent mys­ter­ies, no. 242. John Bartrom knew all about the rare Healey G-type, 3.0-litre sports con­vert­ible, or Alvis-healey, and some early en­tries to Mys­tery no. 243 were very close, iden­ti­fy­ing the ve­hi­cle as a Ford Vedette, though care­ful ex­am­i­na­tion of our pic­ture con­firms it to be the big V8-en­gined Ford Ven­dome, rather than the small V8-en­gined Vedette.

With no sports car ex­pe­ri­ence to fall back on, Daim­ler en­gi­neers looked to ex­ist­ing de­signs for in­spi­ra­tion. What British sport model did Daim­ler re­port­edly copy many of the SP250’S fea­tures from? It was ini­tially named the Daim­ler Dart, what com­pany al­ready owned the name ‘Dart’, caus­ing Daim­ler to re­name the car the ‘SP250’? The name ‘SP250’ re­ferred to the car’s project code. What did it stand for? What year and where was the Daim­ler Dart (as it was called then) un­veiled? Ed­ward Turner de­vel­oped the new 2.5-litre Daim­ler SP250. What was Turner renowned for? Turner was the chief ex­ec­u­tive of what com­pany’s au­to­mo­tive di­vi­sion when asked to de­sign a V8 en­gine for Daim­ler? In which English city was the Daim­ler SP250 built be­tween 1959 and 1964? In what year did Jaguar pur­chase Daim­ler from BSA? Which iconic British sports car sealed the Daim­ler SP250’S fate? Who was Jaguar’s chair­man when it bought Daim­ler?

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