So, the other day this olelongrooffan was passing by my brother’s, the jeepjunkie, Goodyear shop and as I was a bit thirsty, I thought I would stop and enjoy a cold diet sodie pop with him. While we were hanging out at the entrance to one of his ten bays, one of his customers comes rolling up in
this 1961 Daimler SP 250. Yeah, WTF is that?
This fin bearing, fiberglass British sports car
could barely contain its owner in the pilot’s compartment.
But really, it’s okay, it’s got a HEMI, SU’s and Lucas Electrics!! “Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh My.”
My fellow Hoons can read more about this rare roadster here. For a real treat, be sure to read through to the end.
And if are mildly interested in this, you absolutely have to listen to this week’s podcast.
Happy Holiday to my fellow Hoons.
Hooniverse Weekend Edition: It's A What?
The late '50s were difficult times for Daimler. They had too complex of a range for their small volume, and the extravagant spending habits of the managing director and his wife had bled the company dry. The SP250 was a desperate effort to sell cars in America, but it didn't keep Jaguar from taking over in 1960. Still, I have a hard time imagining the Daimler people standing around this weird and ugly roadster and saying "It's beautiful! We have to produce it!". There were plans to replace it with this car in the early 1960s, but Jaguar would not tolerate anyone muscling in on their sports car territory, so the project was killed.
When I've seen the SP250 at shows alongside other brit roadsters of its time, the styling actually makes sense, it looks distinctive (or weird if you prefer) because it was an unusual offering in a crowded field. But quite apart from the styling, the engine was the real story, and virtually no other small brit roadster could touch it at least for the first few model years. In my version of the history, Jaguar took over Daimler just in time to prevent it from capitalizing on its wonderful new Turner V8s, the tiny one here and the one in the Majestic Major. The Major was a faster and in many ways better car than the Jaguar Mk IX or Mk X, a realization not lost on Jaguar at the time.
I love those old Daimler Darts so much I made one that I found the very first subject of my then-new blog. The one I took pictures of was behind a chain link fence, and looked like it was having some work done on the rear end, but it was gorgeous just the same.
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