In 1967 DAF made a bold move away from the aircooled powered roots for it’s motor cars and introduced it’s passenger car the “goat nimble” DAF 55 powered by a 50hp 1108cc 4 cylinder water cooled Renault engine.
In one of the earliest copies of MotorSport I bought in 1973 this 5 litre / 302 cui 450 hp V8 Oldsmobile powered DAF 55 got a mention when driver Tony Hazelwood recorded a Super Saloon lap record of over 100mph at Thruxton, the year after the DAF 55 model went out of production.
Ray Kilminster the builder of this device took a Dutch DAF 55 Coupe shell hooked it up with suspension, brakes and transmission from a March Formula 2 single seat vehicle and then shoehorned the largest available engine into what ever space was remained, then fitted F1 spec wheels and tyres before letting it loose on the race tracks of Britain.
Weighing only 700 kgs the vehicle had good weight distribution, because it followed the original DAF 55 pattern of having an engine in the front and transmission in the back, the Super Saloon regulations to which this car was built mandated pretty much anything, except any variation of the original engine and transmission layout which the car was supposed to represent and aerodynamic wings.
Tony Hazelwood the original driver, seen in the top photograph about to enter the car at Goodwood Festival of Speed, restored it with some of it’s other previous owners, due to improvements in tyre technology he has had to fit stiffer springs so that the car is now faster than ever before.
More details about the car and how you could take a stake in it and or drive it are available from Tony’s website linked here.
Thanks for joining me on this “No Wings” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow. Don’t forget to come back now !