Wednesday, 2 March 2011
It's not everyday I stumble upon a vehicle manufacturer I have never heard of but at last weekends Race Retro I came across two such manufacturers the first the subject of today's blog is Warwick.
The origins of the Warwick lie in Peerless Cars Ltd founded by John Gordon and James Byrnes, Peerless built approximately 325 fiberglass vehicles with tubular space frames designed by Bernie Rodger around Triumph TR3 running gear. A Peerless GT Coupe driven by Peter Jopp and Percy Crabb finished 16th in the 1958 Le Mans 24 hour race.
Peerless Cars Ltd failed in 1960 and Bernie Rodger upgraded his design with a stiffer chassis, one piece forward hingeing bonnet and marketed it under the Warwick name though the vehicles were actually built in Colnbrook, Berkshire. Around 40 Warwicks are thought to have been manufactured from 1960 to 1962.
Meantime Peerless founder John Gordon teamed up with Jim Keeble to carry on manufacturing vehicles based on the original Peerless chassis with Chevrolet motors and completely new bodywork designed by Guigiaro and built by Bertone marketed under the Gordon - Keeble brand.
In 1961 Warwick manufactured two prototypes with all aluminium 3.5 litre / 215 cui Buick (BOP) 215 engines, the four tail pipes on this vehicle are evidence that this is one of those two prototypes.
The Warwick appeared at Race Retro on the Central Scanning stand, a company that specialises in scanning old parts so that they can be reverse engineered, thus making it theoretically possible to remanufacture almost any part for any vehicle that has ever been built so long as an original copy exists to be scanned.
I hope you have enjoyed today's Forgotten Marque edition of 'Getting a lil' psycho on tyres' and that you will join me again tomorrow for another forgotten marque. Don't forget to come back now !
05/09/11 Looking into the name of this model I have come to realise it is properly called a Warwick 350GT not 305GT as originally published. Apologies for any confusion.