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The tangled and interesting history of this Lotus 22

8 December, 2016

As part of international Diamond Jubilee celebrations, many overseas Formula Junior racers are scheduled to compete alongside locals in special races to be held at Hampton Downs, Taupō, Ruapuna, Levels, and Teretonga this summer. To mark the occasion we look at the history behind the Lotus 22 once raced in New Zealand by Roly Levis in the early ’60s

In September 1963, Roly Levis placed an advertisement in the classifieds columns of UK magazine, Autosport. Looking to purchase a Lotus 22, Roly’s advert called for a car in good condition with a Hewland five-speed gearbox at a ‘non-comic’ price.

Subsequently, he purchased the Lotus directly from Jonathan Williams who, in 1967, would drive his one and only Formula 1 Grand Prix for Ferrari as teammate to Chris Amon in Mexico — coincidentally on the same day as Denny Hulme was crowned world champion.

Have a look at a few additional photos that didn’t make it into the feature in the January issue of New Zealand Classic Car (Issue No. 313) — grab your copy here to read the full story.

Taipan – surpassing interest

“It’s merely a passing interest,” insists Selby — despite owning three variants of the classic VW Beetle, including an unusual VW van that was sold as a body kit for a Subaru. In his defence he points to a 1961 Ford Thunderbird, a car that he converted to right-hand drive. However, on the VW side of the ledger, since he opened Allison Autos in Whanganui 27 years ago, Selby has built 15 VW-powered Formula First cars, followed by a beach buggy, restored a derelict Karmann Ghia, and hot-rodded a common or garden Beetle into something that has to be seen to be believed. As speed is not something generally associated with classic VWs, though, Selby is still waiting for this particular modification to catch on amongst the hot rod faithful.

Travelling companion

It’s easy to see why the Morris Minor Traveller was one of the best-loved variants of the Morris Minor. Introduced in 1953, it was equipped with the same independent torsion bar front suspension, drum brakes, and rack and pinion steering as its saloon sibling but, with their foldable rear seat increasing versatility, many Travellers were used as trade vehicles, says Derek Goddard. Derek and Gail Goddard, the owners of this superbly restored example, have run Morris Minors since before they were married in 1974.
“Our honeymoon vehicle was a blue Morris Minor van — it was a rust bucket,” says Derek.