• Doug Algie’s Tucker V8 in its workshop – the street outside his parent’s house – with a crowd of young admirers and future Formula One fans

The Man Who Sat in Nuvolari’s Seat

May 8th, 2019|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , |

The first time I saw Doug Algie he was sitting behind the huge steering wheel of a car that once had been driven by the great Tazio Nuvolari. It was February 1966 at a low-key club race meeting on a tidal area near the township of Karitane, north of Dunedin. Doug was driving an enormous [...]

  • Halfway between Glenorchy and Queenstown alongside Lake Wakatipu, with Robin le Roy passengering in his Alfa while his friend, Stephen Martin, drives

From Alfa to Zagato

June 27th, 2018|Tags: , , , , , , , , , |

Wim le Roy has been passionate for all things Lancia since 1965 when he owned an Aurelia 2500GT whilst resident in Europe, a passion that his two sons, Onno and Robin, inherited. And when Wim and his wife Astrid, along with Onno and Robin, emigrated to New Zealand during the late 1990s, they brought with [...]

1975 Alfa Romeo Spider – Rental Roadster

April 24th, 2018|Tags: , , , , |

As sung by Marianne Faithful, Lucy Jordan famously realised she’d never ride through Paris in a sports car with the warm wind in her hair. Well that’s all very romantic but if Dave Dobbyn had written that song, Nelson would have been the location for Lucy’s lament – and I’ll suffer no argument on that [...]

  • VW Golf GTi Mk 2

Hot Hatchbacks: 1970s-1983/84

February 21st, 2018|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

In the past two issues we’ve looked back at how performance cars moved from being the enjoyable playthings of lucky people within some sectors of society, to their availability as everyday cars for family use. This trend accelerated through the 1960s and continued through the 1970s, with manufacturers becoming more adept at developing performance cars, [...]

  • Riley’s fancy Mini – the Kestrel

Affordable Sports Saloons Part 2. 
The 1960s: GT or not GT

December 14th, 2017|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , |

The move towards more-fun-to-drive cars gathered pace through 1958 and 1959, as the big companies began to realise that brisk performance could be designed into a family saloon without much company design effort or expenditure and sell at a sensibly higher (and more profitable) price to add more appeal to their model ranges. While some [...]

  • Contemporary advert for the Spitfire Mk III

The Cass Files – Sports & GT Cars

August 17th, 2017|Tags: , , , , , , , , , |

By late 1967, sports and GT coupé fans here in New Zealand were eagerly awaiting sightings or considering purchase of some of the 1966–67 new models from Britain and Europe. We had read about them in Motorman and seen the road reports in UK Autocar and Motor magazines as well as in Wheels and Modern [...]

Alfissimo!

November 22nd, 2016|Tags: , , , , , , , , |

Having started his working life designing trucks, Vittorio Jano – an Italian of Hungarian descent – was hired by Alfa Romeo in 1923 as their chief engineer with a specific brief to produce race-winning cars. Jano easily showed that he was up to this task – his first design being the straight-eight P2 racecar [...]