New Zealand Classic Car 166, October 2004

Chrysler has been producing cars for many years but its been a long time since a Chrysler sports coupe has been available in New Zealand. This month we take a look at the new Chrysler Crossfire.

Our brief was simple; take one '55 Chrysler New Yorker Newport Deluxe and one spanking new Chrysler Crossfire and see how the marque has changed and progressed over the last 50 years.  We also look at Chrysler and aerodynamics – with a brief comparison of the state-of-the-art '30s style, as represented by the '30s by the Chrysler Airflow, and current thinking - as represented by the smoothly styled Crossfire.

There is little doubt that the Fiat Dino Coupe is one of the most beautiful cars to ever emanate from Bertone's famous styling studio - and, with an engine that would also find a home in exotic sports cars such as the Lancia Stratos and in Ferrari's Dino 246, there is no doubt that the lovely Fiat Dino has plenty of latin brio. Tim goes all Mafioso on us as he drives a 2.4-litre coupe while recalling the part the Fiat Dino played in the classic Michael Caine movie The Italian Job.

Remember the Trekka? Looking rather like an underfed Land Rover, the Trekka emerged in the mid '60s and for a time became a very familiar sight on our roads. Perhaps the Trekka's main claim to fame is that it remains New Zealand's only true production car. This month, Todd Niall (whose new book The Trekka Dynasty is due for release in November) looks back at this true Kiwi icon - relates the story behind the car's conception, design, production and final demise. It's a story every Kiwi motoring enthusiast will want to read about.

Connaught & Jim Richards Classic Motorsport:  This month we've got a real feast for classic motorsport fans, leading off with an article that examines ones of the more unusual looking cars to ever race in New Zealand - the Connaught Streamliner. This car was brought to these shores in 1956 by Leslie Marr and competed successfully in that seaon's international race series. Eoin Young talks to Leslie about his single season of racing in New Zealand - and the article is accompanied with many rare photographs of the Connaught racing in New Zealand, with a selection of equally rare photographs showing the first Connaught Streamliner being tested in the UK.

John Nicholson - usually known as'Johnny Nick' - is probably not a well known name to all our readers, but he was a real contender in open-wheel racing and was also one of only a handful of Kiwis to ever start a Formula One Grand Prix. Michael Clark examines John's racing career.

Finally, of course, we continue out countdown to the 10th Anniversary of the Dunlop Targa NZ. This month we check out three quite different Targa cars and their pilots: Ken Williams' Mercedes-Benz 280E, Kirsten and Mike Courtney;'s Hillman Avenger and Malcolm Flynn's Jaguar XJ-C. Gentleman Jim Returns to Targa Jim Richards is bringing his Porsche 911 back to New Zealand for the 10th Anniversary Dunlop Targa – so we take a brief look at Jim's more recent racing career. Talk of Jim Richards naturally leads us to V8 touring cars - so it is perhaps appropriate that this month we jumped at the chance to take Paul Manuell's Orix Team V8 Touring Car for a quick sprint around the track at Pukekohe.

All this, and a Ford Model A Coupe, the second part of our Spotter's Guide on Jaguar and Daimler saloons of the '60s, road-testing the new Triumph Rocket motorcycle, GT News, classic events, regional classic car news and, of course, all our usual columns and workshop advice


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