Dan Sherwood

Dan Sherwood

Dan Sherwood Dan Sherwood 200mph record-breaking twin-turbocharged 530bhp Citroen SM 1 year ago

SM enthusiasm

Chapeau! for your excellent feature on Jerry Hathaway’s Citroën SM racecar, truck and trailer.

Jerry was a very dear friend, whom I had the pleasure of visiting for 12 years, until Covid hit. I would spend two to three weeks annually learning and doing all things SM under Jerry’s supervision in his Santa Clarita workshop [below] before returning to Oz and passing my findings on to the local SM enthusiasts. Regarding his willingness to share his expertise, he commented: ‘All I want [to see] is that SMs are running good.’ As for the rig being sold to Europe, Jerry was pleased that it would form part of an impressive SM collection and that European enthusiasts would be able to see it. Personally, I was touched by Marc Sonnery’s closing lines: ‘Here’s to you, Jerry Hathaway. André Citroën would surely have raised his hat in tribute.’

Dan Sherwood Dan Sherwood 1988 Cizeta-Moroder V16T 1 year ago


The Auto Italia radar, I'm sure, detected that Antonio Mandelli has announced the revival of the Cizeta name, with what is tantamount to a new car, but still centred on that unique V16 engine. In the definitive book on the Cizeta cars by Brian Wiklem it is explained that, rather as Dauer bought Bugatti EB110 stock, Mr Mandelli did the same with Cizeta Automobili some time ago, to develop his own modified version, formerly known as the Mandelli Monza.

This Auto Italia reader noticed the repeat of one fact that was refuted by Mr Wiklem, that it was Giorgio Moroder's investment which turned Claudio Zampolli into an independent manufacturer. In fact the author alleges activity had been underway a year already, for Sylvester Stallone was the wealthy friend originally enthused by the talented Zampolli to back his enterprise. The famous actor was a customer of his, very into Lamborghini supercars at the time, evinced by the Jalpa in 1985's Rocky IV. It seems he moved on from Cizeta when the Mimrans asked him about becoming involved in Lamborghini affairs instead. Consequently, the V16 engine already existed and was secretly being road tested by Mr Zampolli in a cut-and-shut Ferrari 308 GTB by the time Giorgio Moroder came on board. He said himself that it was the sight of the engine that convinced him the endeavour was serious and had prospects. I still support the theory that the car was conceived by Zampolli in the early 1980s as an offering to Lamborghini's new owners, the Mimran brothers, to put into production alongside the Countach as a companion model, derived from it, but oriented at the US market. One can see why, when he was later turned down and Claudio decided to create and sell the car himself, he would not want people to see it as a Lamborghini reject. A car to be the next Lamborghini would explain why the Cizeta Moroder was to have a chassis of rectangular (cuboid) tubes instead of cylindrical tubes, a curious choice for a hand-built car. Roundsection tubes can be lighter for the same strength, so they were and still are preferred in motor racing and would be expected for a handmade prestige supercar of the highest quality and price, as the Cizeta eventually became. Round tubes were difficult to machine-weld at the time, so a series production supercar typically used squaresection tubes. The famous motor mogul Bob Lutz, at Chrysler under Lee Lacocca during the Lamborghini era, said that he asked Tom Gale and William Dayton of their Design Center to restyle the Diablo in 1987 precisely because it looked too much like the Cizeta Moroder and not enough like the Countach. It took a year to arrive at a compromise all could agree on — Gandini redid the nose, Chrysler redid the rear. Telling, though, that the altered Diablo still bore Gandini's name on the flank, whereas the purer Cizeta Moroder never did. Well, that's the theory I believe, anyway. Would that Claudio were still here to set the record straight for himself, although Auto Italia did interview him, so we have that. It is a sad fact that many of the people who knew the truth of the greatest era for the cars we like, the 1950s-1980s, are passing beyond the veil now, leaving a lot of vacuum that will fill with whatever prejudice people are happy to believe. I still read, if never in Auto Italia, assertions like Ferruccio Lamborghini storming off to make the Miura after a fight with Enzo Ferrari when in reality they never even met, or that the Lancia Beta and Fiat 128 are merely synonyms for rust bucket, not that they advanced front-wheel drive car design by at least 10 years. Bravo to those who keep trying, but please, heroes, do tell your stories. And tell them here!

Dan Sherwood Dan Sherwood 2022 Porsche 911 992 Safari nears release 2 years ago

The 911 992 GT3 Touring is an exceedingly special 911, there’s no question about that. In terms of moving the game on over the brilliant 991 before it, we’ve documented this with a back-toback road test beginning on page 14, but there’s a larger subtext here that’s relevant to the wider 911 story. That’s because it’s not simply bettering the 991 which makes the 992 GT3 Touring such an astounding accomplishment, but because it does so amid a challenging backdrop of evertightening restrictions and legislation across a breadth of areas. Whether it’s emissions or pedestrian safety, governments aren’t just moving the goalposts for traditional sports cars: they’re shrinking the goal entirely. As we’ve discovered previously in this magazine, Porsche’s GT department chief, Andreas Preuninger, has admitted to having sleepless nights trying to evolve such spectacular machines such as a GT3 while conforming to these increasingly stringent laws. It presents the ultimate conflict: how can you improve on something so revered… while having one hand tied behind your back? The fact we can still enjoy a high-revving, naturally aspirated engine in a GT3 is nothing short of miraculous, especially in a sphere where other brands have gone turbocharged or committed to electric power altogether. But not only is the traditional GT3 still present, it’s entirely relevant: it’s quicker, more powerful, has more grip and, crucially, is more efficient than ever before. Yes, its ability to please both lawmakers and petrolheads is borne out of a need to conform, but legislation has led to marvellous innovation, and the result is nothing short of astounding. Where can Porsche possibly go from here? I’m sure headaches are being had over that very subject as you read this, but nevertheless, the 992 GT3 must surely go down as one of the great triumphs over motoring adversity. Kudos, Mr Preuninger.

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