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Sheer beauty and exceptional performance in the latest New Zealand Classic Car

13 March, 2016

There is absolutely no doubt that for sheer beauty combined with exceptional performance, nothing compares with the elegant Mercedes-Benz 500K and 540K supercars of the 1930s. Chief among these is the 540K Roadster penned by Hermann Ahrens, epitomizing the company’s masterwork.


This month we take a look at a fabulous 540K Roadster. This massive, handcrafted, art deco sculpture was the absolute pinnacle of automotive desirability from the moment it was launched in Paris back in 1936.

We also take a look at a vehicle that was owned since new, then left unloved for many years — our featured Rover SD1 was lovingly resurrected by the grandson of the original owner. Read his story as he and other family members rally together to create something very special indeed.

We also buckle ourselves into the latest monster from across the ditch — the latest HSV Clubsport LSA R8 — and put it through its paces. Read our final verdict.  

It’s Targa time once again, so be sure to check out the Special Stage maps, itinerary, and competitor listing for this year’s Targa Bambina.

For those of you who were not able to attend the NZFMR Porsche Festival at Hampton Downs, we bring you all the action, thrills and spills in a full report plus coverage of Leadfoot Festival, the New Zealand Classic Car Show, and other events from around the country.

Plus our usual full complement of news items, along with other features such as Behind the Garage Door, Club Corner, and Editor’s Pick to keep you reading.  

Grab a print copy or a digital copy of New Zealand Classic Car Issue No. 303 below:

The Jowett Jupiter turns 70

John Ball has always enjoyed tinkering with old boats and cars. He’s old enough to think having gearbox parts on newspaper on the floor of his bedroom, while the relevant car sat waiting on nail boxes, was a normal part of growing up. His passion has always tended towards old British bangers. He reckons he’s fortunate not to have got caught up in the American muscle scene.
John’s love affair with this Jupiter started in December 2015 when, with some time on his hands during a Christchurch trip, he searched online for ‘cars, before 1970 and in Christchurch’.

A passion for classics and customs

In the highly competitive field of New Zealand classic and custom restorations, reputations are won or lost on the ability to maintain consistently high standards of workmanship. A company managing to achieve this is D A Panel beating Ltd, of Rangiora near Christchurch. Is your classic or custom car restoration stalled, or in need of a refresh, or perhaps you are looking for experts to rebuild that recent import project out of Europe or the ‘States?