Author(s): Patrick Harlow
At one stage almost all the cars sold in New Zealand were assembled in this country by big names like Holden, Ford and Toyota. Less known is the fact that during this time New Zealand was also the producer of many home grown cars and still is, but on a much smaller scale. The companies that produced these cars were forced to work on a shoestring budget and could not afford advertising campaigns to make their cars known. Largely ignored by mainstream motoring magazines they relied on word of mouth and success on the race track to get into the public domain. This book looks at the vehicles which make up an important part of our motoring heritage. Many have never appeared in print before. Included are cars such as the Heron, inspired by the Lotus Esprit, of which 28 were sold in turnkey form. The Escartus, a car that was going to be a supercar in the early eighties but only a few were built. The Mistral was a British body brought into the country in the late fifties and built into a competitive production car using Kiwi ingenuity. Included also is the Saker which is New Zealand's least known supercar, but was built in at least three different countries and has its own racing series called the "European Saker Sports Car Challenge". Inside these pages are New Zealand's automotive successes, the survivors and the short lived. As many as possible of these unique vehicles have been documented in this essential book for all car enthusiasts.