Still in the early 1960 sand another tale of two continents, but the contrast between last month’s lightweight South African / UK sports car and this month’s behemoth is very apparent. Who can tell us about this very flamboyant vehicle? Send your solution to email@example.com, or by mail to Mystery Car No. 258 August 2017, New zealand classic car, PO Box 46,020, Herne Bay, Auckland, by August 4th. Our mystery last month was the lively GSM Dart, or GSM Delta, sports car, which carved out quite a reputation for itself on racing circuits in the early 1960s. The car was first conceived in mid-’50s South Africa (SA) by Bob van Niekerk and Willie Meissner but didn’t begin to take shape until 1956, when Meissner, by then working in Britain, learned about fibreglass and van Niekerk hurriedly went to Britain to work with him again on their sports car project. Verster de Wit, working then at Rootes, also became involved to help out with body design. By mid 1957, van Niekerk and Meissner were back in SA, where they built the initial two GSM Darts, which first raced (and won!) on New Year’s Day 1958, using Ford 100E engines, converted to overhead valve (OHV) for more power. A fair amount of Ford running gear was used. ‘GSM’ was the abbreviation for ‘Glass Sport Motors’, and the body was a lightweight glass-fibre construction fitted on a tubular ladder-style chassis. The ‘finny’ styling was vaguely reminiscent of the Sunbeam Alpine at the rear — this was no accident, as de Wit had been involved in the body design of the Alpine while at Rootes. GT coupé versions were available. Production began soon after, and 41 cars were built in the next two years. A variety of engines could be fitted, ranging from sidevalve 100E and OHV small Fords to Peugeot 403; twin-cam Alfa; and, later on, Lotus Cortina as well. The cars certainly seemed to have enough roadholding to cope with that sort of power. They were successful in racing in SA, and well over 100 were eventually built there, plus there were possibly another 60 built by GSM Cars in Britain from 1960. The UK cars had to be renamed ‘GSM Delta’, as the ‘Dart’ model name was trademarked — Daimler’s SP250 sports car, originally announced as the ‘Daimler Dart’, was caught the same way. Information on the net about these cars is easily found, but contradictory — no surprise! The above notes on the early history of the car come from van Niekerk’s own account, so should be reliable. Writing as usual to an early deadline, we are unable to update on recent contest winners. More next issue, perhaps.