Tag Archives: Enrico

Planet of the Bee’s – Piaggio Ape Cross Country

It is well known that Rolls Royce once avoided extreme embarrassment in Germany by a last minute change of name of one of their models from Silver Mist to Silver Shadow.

Piaggio Ape Cross Country

It must be questioned if inventor of the Vespa scooter Corradino D’Ascanio and Enrico Piaggio who’s company manufactured the scooters were aware of the English meaning of “Ape” when they named their chose the name for their three wheeled pick up in 1947 or if they were just monkeying around.”Ape” pronounced ‘ah-peh’ in Italian translates to bee in English.

Piaggio Ape Cross Country

Ape’s have been in continuous production since then with a variety of motors this 2004 model has a 49 cc / 3 cui motor which allegedly has good torque though low gearing keeps the top speed down to around 40 mph.

Piaggio Ape Cross Country

As well as being a tremendous success in Italy variants of the Ape are even more popular in India where the design serves as the most numerous form of motorised Taxi known as tuk-tuks which are manufactured by Piaggio India.I well remember a hair raising ride on a tuk tuk in New Dehli many years ago which convinced me that if I wished to leave India alive I’d probably best taking four wheeled transport for the rest of my stay.

Piaggio Ape Cross Country

But after I took a ride on a New Dehli bus and I was not so sure that was any safer.

Thanks for joining me on this busy bee edition of ‘Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres’ I hope you will join me again tomorrow. Don’t forget to come back now !

PS Don’t forget …

Automobiliart GALPOT Seasonal Quiz

Automobiliart, Paul Chenard

December 26th – January 2nd

Win a set of Paul Chenard Greetings Cards

Sports-GT cars set, Paul Chenard

Set 1 Sports & GT Cars

Phil Hill, Sharknose Ferrari Set, Paul Chenard

Set 2 Phil Hill World Drivers Championship 50th Anniversary Edition

1934 GP Season Card set, Paul Chenard

Set 3 1934 Season

1950s Grand Prix Engines

Set 4 Grand Prix Engines of the 1950’s


Mike Hawtorns racecars Card set, Paul Chenard

Set 5 Mike Hawthorn’s Race Cars

The Automobiliart GALPOT Seasonal Quiz will comprise 8 categories.

Overall winner chooses one set of Paul Chenard Greetings Cards from the five sets shown above.

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Which set will you choose ?

The free to enter Automobiliart GALPOT Seasonal Quiz will run from December 26th – January 2nd Entries close January 8th 2012, Winner announced January 16th 2012.

Full details on December 26th at GALPOT.

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You can’t reverse that thing here mate ! – Lotus IX

Moving up the field at Thompson CT on 20th July 1958 today Ed Arnaudin’s photo’s feature a Lotus IX driven by Len Bastrup a respected Lotus driver who finished 2nd in Race 1 for class G, HP & HM cars.

Around thirty Lotus IX models were manufactured from 1954 to 1955 with a variety of engines available from MG, Connaught and Bristol, this particular model had the most common 4 cylinder 1098 cc / 65.4 cui Coventry Climax Class G spec motor .

The body was penned by Frank Costin, brother of Mike who gave the Cos to Cosworth, and manufactured by Williams & Pritchard, who GALPOT regulars might remember were responsible for an all time favourite of mine the special body on a BMW 315/1.

Colin Chapman the dynamo behind Lotus Cars and accomplished racing driver entered a IX for the Le Mans 24 hours in 1955.

During the race he crashed his car into a sand bank. Thinking nothing of the incident he reversed out and was promptly disqualified for unauthorised reversing.

Len Bastrup was racing from at least 1953 to 1960 starting in MG’s and then moving to Lotus cars in 1955. He shared a Lotus XI at the Sebring 12 hours in 1956 with Lotus founder Colin Chapman which burst into flames after an accident in practice which caused terminal damage and withdrawal from the race before it had started.

My thanks to Ed Arnaudin for the photographs, his son Steve for sending them on and Terry O’Neil for the race results.

Hope you have enjoyed today’s 45.5cui edition of Gettin’ a lil’ psycho on tyres’ and that you will join me again tomorrow. Don’t forget to come back now !


HM Racer – Nardi MD4 Spyder

Todays post comes courtesy of photographer Ed Arnaudin who’s photo’s were kindly forwarded to me courtesy of his son Steve.

Featured today is a Nardi ND 4 Spyder, seen here at the New York Championship Race meeting, Thompson CT July 20th 1958 where it came in 11th driven by John Igleheart in Race 1, a race which I will be returning to tomorrow.

Enrico Nardi was an Italian racing driver, engineer and designer who worked for Lancia and the works Alfa Romeo Scuderia Ferrari Team. Enrico is credited with being one of the first two drivers to race the Auto Avio Costruzioni 815, considered to be the very first Ferrari model in all but name, in the 1940 Mille Miglia.

In 1951 Nardi established his own workshops on Via Lancia, Torino to build prototypes and one of the strangest vehicles out side of Can Am 2 the twin boom Nardi Bisiluro for the 1955 Le Mans 24 Hours.

The mid 1950’s ND4 Spyder is one of many of Nardi’s 750 cc vehicles which came in a variety of shapes powered by a variety motors including JAP, Crosley, Panhard and in the case of this particular vehicle a 4 cylinder 43 hp 747 cc / 45.5 cui FIAT unit sourced from the FIAT 600 parts bin.

John Igleheart driver of the #95 seems to have been a specialist at racing cars with small motors he is known to have raced from at least 1953 to 1968, he seems to have been most successful driving a ‘Bobsy’.

My thanks again to Ed and Steve Arnaidin for todays valuable contribution and to Terry O’ Neil for the race results.

Hope you have enjoyed today’s 45.5cui edition of Gettin’ a lil’ psycho on tyres’ and that you will join me again tomorrow. Don’t forget to come back now !