Tag Archives: Hansgen

Another Alternative C-Type – Sulprizio Hagemann GMC

Like Walt Hansgen a few years earlier when United Engineering & Machine co owner Babe Sulprizio found he was too many dollars short to own a C-Type Jaguar he set to building his own special in 1955.

Sulprizio Hagemann GMC, Rolex Reunion, Laguna Seca,

Babe started by building a steel tube ladder frame to which he fitted Jaguar Mk VII independent front suspension and rear axle , a Morris Minor steering rack and a 5 litre / 302 cui GMC six cylinder ‘Jimmy’ motor mated to a 4 speed Moss gearbox.

It is said the ‘Jimmy’ GMC motor was chosen after the local Oakland Chevrolet assembly plant refused to supply a 265 cui V8.

For the bodywork Babe took his chassis with some sketched bodywork idea’s to expert english wheelman Jack Hagemann. Babe insisted the completed body be painted bright red which led to the car often being mistaken for a Ferrari.

I have not been able to establish any competition results for the car which appears to have been known as the Hagemann GMC or Sulprizio Hagemann GMC, if you know of any please do not hesitate to chime in below.

In 1976 the current owner bought the car and appears to have installed a Jaguar XK 120 motor, XK 150 disc brakes and tired of telling the inquisitive his car was not a Ferrari had it repainted in metallic British Racing Green.

Note this car is not to be confused with the 1957 Cozzi Jaguar Special which was also painted red and fitted with a Jack Hagemann body.

My thanks to Geoffrey Horton for sharing his photo of the Sulprizio Hagemann GMC taken at last years Rolex Reunion at Laguna Seca.

Thanks for joining me on this “Another Alternative C-type” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow for a look at a Shadow. Don’t forget to come back now !


Hansgen History For Sale – Hansgen Jaguar Special

Walt Hansgen was working at the family F.G. Hansgen body repair shop in Westfield, New Jersey when he was bitten by the racing bug aged 32.

In 1951 he managed to scrimp, save and borrow enough to buy a brand new Jaguar XK120 but despite ever improving results soon found it was not fast enough to keep pace with the competition and the new C-type Jaguar first seen in September 1952 in particular.

After racing in borrowed vehicles most of the way through 1952 Walt and Emil Hoffman built the chrome molly steel frame for today’s featured Hansgen Jaguar Special and transferred the running gear from his XK120 to save around 700 lbs in weight.

Hansgen Jaguar Special, Lime Rock, Ed Hyman,

Photo Copyright Ed Hyman 2007

Walt is known to have raced the car on at least 9 occasions through 1953 winning the SCCA Regional Cumberland Cup third time out and culminated by winning the 6th Annual Grand Prix of Watkins Glen.

Walt sold the car to Paul Timmins for the 1954 season and continued racing with a C-Type he bought from Marsten Gregory until he was eventually picked up by Briggs Cunningham to race as a professional.

Paul scored at least four second place finishes from at least eight known starts in the Hansgen Special.

Hansgen Jaguar Special, Lime Rock, Richard Rowley

Photo Copyright Richard Rowley 2014

Today the Hansgen Special is owned by Bob Millstein who bought her in 1983 and set about a six year restoration which was rewarded with a Jaguar Club of North America’s National Concours Champion award in 1989.

Since then Bob has continued to race the Hansgen Special which is seen in these photographs at Lime Rock. Ryan ‘Racer 187’ Smith, seen in the Daimler in the top photo, tells me the Hansgen Special is up for sale. If you would like to know more about this piece of Hansgen History, I will gladly put you in contact with the vendor, usual disclaimers apply.

My thanks to Ryan Smith for arranging permission for me to use the first photo by Ed Hyman and the second by Richard Rowley.

Thanks for joining me on this “Hansgen History For Sale” edition of “Gettin a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow when I shall be looking at an unusual Japanese Formula One Car. Don’t forget to come back now !