Take a look at five decades of local rallying

30 January, 2017

Apart from motor racing, the early days of New Zealand’s motorsport scene consisted of car trials and timed events designed to keep to the legal speed limits.

Then in the late ’60s, the influence of European special-stage rallying (closed roads where drivers could go as fast as possible) started to take over.

New Zealanders took to this new form of motorsport like ducks to water. Our smooth-flowing gravel public roads, and the abundance of well-maintained government forest roads, saw the early days of rallying quickly build to events that attracted up to 135 starters.

Grab your copy of the February 2017 issue of New Zealand Classic Car Issue No. 314 to read the full story.

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.

Super Leicht Gullwing

It’s fair to say that nothing much in the classic Mercedes world gets past Mercedes-Benz Club stalwart Garry Boyce so it wasn’t surprising to learn that around 15 years ago he had sniffed out an extremely rare 300SL lightweight Gullwing as well as a 1958 300SL Roadster hiding away in the Waikato. The cars were not for sale but Garry eventually managed to persuade the owner to allow him and his restoration team to take a look at the Roadster. They discovered a very distressed but largely unmolested car. The car was so original that the body had never been off the chassis, meaning most of the parts and fittings were still present and correct, as they had been fitted by the factory.