Sunday, 30 April 2017

Be still, my Takechi-Project-Sprint-ing Hart..


Makes perfect sense, right? Zero confusion? That battle's on the cards?


Well you know what? It doesn't bloody matter.

Because it's time for another wheel-in-detail post, very much along the same lines as the wheel posts from last year.. or hell, the ones before that.

Cherry-red and literally-cherry pair of Sprint Harts I picked up ~18months or so ago.
NOS, complete down to the cap and valve packaging, and a bit of colour on the box. How am I supposed to say no to that?! I'm not made of stone! here they are.

Heat-gun in hand, eyes full of tears; carefully peeling away decades of excess tape and stickers..


Grand-tour of the twenty-seven-year-old cardboard box..

...the colourful panel...

...and a niiiice, clear shot of the tremendous tale used on the wheel:
Now I'm not quite fluent in.. uhh.. Spanish? German? Maybe French? Yet have managed to translate:

You and I are fond of automobile racing.
It has had a noticeable effect on the hobby of your choice. 
As a result, we should have a competition using our vehicles.
Regards, Hart Motor Sports. 

Uh? Yeah, we're going with that.

Now for the wheel. The pretty little red thing from not-so-far-away - it's the wheel in detail:
Takechi Project, Sprint Hart.
15x6.5" +35
4H 114.3
October 1990.

Simple two-piece welded cast-alloy wheel by Takechi Project, introduced sometime at the end of the decade. Available in 13-15", 4H100-5H114.3, and in at least the solid red, white, and a black...
...while the 60mm castellated caps are identical to the small-stud-patten SpeedStar mesh part...

...with that snappy little paragraph proudly printed on the decal...

...and yet again on the outer lip...

The rest of the cap's text? That's here - 180degrees around to the other side.


When my baby's walking down the street
I see red, I see red, I see red..

How can someone wicked walk 'round free
I see red, I see red, I see red.

I see reeehh-ehhhh-ehhhhhhhh...
I see red!

Flipped over for a look at the back-side of the wheel.

Date-stamp for an October 1990 casting, while on the spoke to the left: "HART".

"6 1/2"

A tiny detail, but I always appreciate when the decal is stuck on squarely. It's paper and peeling, but nope.. that's a nice effort.

The whole fit-and-finish of the wheel is noticeably high, reminding me of those Heroes Racing CXs from a couple years ago..

For a brief cap comparison:
Alongside the 60mm (small PCD) shot SSR mesh cap mentioned above.

..and for the sake of wrapping-up with something from their heyday: they are in a 1993 HyperRev (HyperRev 1 : Eunos Roadster). Fun. Colour-coordinatey.

Aaaand we're done.
That is all.
A useless chunk of faff, dribbled around some so-so images; but we've had fun, right?
It's worth it: giving the predecessor to the all-white Sprint Hart CP-family (CP, CP-F, CP-R..) another shot in the spotlight.

Thursday, 27 April 2017

André Courrèges alloy-wheel alphabet. Again.

..or 'revisited'.. which I would've gone with had it started with an A.

...because that's what we're doing here. It's another look at the French design fabulous-ness, hurled into the spotlight in that post from May last year.

Eleven-months-between is just too damn long. 

Actually, I'd been asked by someone (writing an article on the brand's automotive efforts) for higher-res versions of the previous scans, as well as any others I could relatively easily find.
Well eventually I sat myself down for a good skim through those thirty-year-old magazines - no easy task when this series of adverts ran off-an-on for five damn years, every.. say.. second month or so, in a magazine with 400-odd very distracting pages. 
Finding them is a goddamn ordeal.
A poorly-spent evening later, I'd skimmed through a bunch of magazines (even at a minute a mag, 5years is a full hour..) scanned the ones I'd found, and emailed them away. Good. Great. Done.

..but a couple of weeks after that, while looking for something else? Another advert. Then another. Urgh...

Anyway... THESE ARE THOSE OTHERS! No, not the recent other-others, but the few-weeks-ago-scanned-and-sent others; as finding these when I need to.. yeah, that's not easy. 

Starting with an early one from '83, and what'd be the last of the not-particularly-abstract adverts. Yep, just a plain old shot of an actual car - in this case a narrow-body Honda City Turbo - and the original low-alphabet AC wheels...

..which are out of order, of course, because non-conformist: The ACA, ACB-P(ink) and ACB-R(ed).

Jumping to late 1984, with a woman boxing with an ACF for a hand. This comes after the rollerblading and skiing adverts in the previous post, and is clearly from the same tremendous series.


It's only a year later, but the A's and B's have already been joined by C, D, E, and F!
There was seemingly only a small period where this complete early alphabet was even possible, as the original ACA's and colourful 1984- ACC's were gone by 1986..

..and then too the swoopy ACE's, which through '85 look to have been available in a less-obnoxious mostly-white colourway (the ACE-W)..

So when we then take another largish step to early 1987...
...there's their later-'86 replacements, the ACG and ACH. André Courrèges charging well into the alphabet at this point, although it is getting a little patchy...

Ah, yes.. and the whole advert. Courrèges earrings, binoculars, and an ACD-clad City Cabriolet; the model looking dreamily into the distance, pondering other Courrèges products she could purchase in the future...


That'll do for now anyway. Well, until I bump into those other-other adverts again!

Thursday, 6 April 2017


..following-on from the previous post's Subaru Rex with even more commercial-Kei.
Spotted at the TCCAV Classic Japan show back in December 2016:
It's Kei-sized.
It's adorable.
It's sporting 10's.
...It is a 1986 CA71V Suzuki Alto Van.

Just like the previous post's Fiori (the Rex), this is another case of the Australian market receiving a bare-bones stripper 'commercial' version of what is otherwise a regular commuter kei-sized vehicle. While Japan had versions as wild as the twin-cam, intercooled-turbo, all-wheel-driving Alto Works RS/R, Australia? A featherweight commercial vehicle, complete with mind-melting 980kg GVM, two seats, a stripped rear interior, and a whole heap of missed-opportunity button blanks.
From a late-1985 introduction (production starting in Japan the year earlier) through to the end of the 80s; if you were shopping for an Alto in Australia... this... this is what you'd get.
Happen to have ten thousand late-80s Australian dollars to spend on a small runabout? Here you go - the Alto GA. One trim level. No options. Job done.
Happen to have $20,000 just burning a damn hole in your pocket..? "Well.. uhh.. how does two new Alto GA's sound..?"

If nothing else, it's basically the superleggera 'competition' version of an already dainty vehicle (right!?).. so yeah, there's that. I have no doubt it'd be a blast to pedal fast...

Glamour shots of the Alto's 543cc F5A; a single-cam, carb-feb, three-cylinder unit that pumped out literally dozens of horsepower from around the 6000rpm..
Push-button badge to release the bonnet catch - a detail I'd genuinely swooned-over on an '85 Swift (Cultus) two years ago...

Suzuki Alto - GOAL ATTACK.

Step-aside Kenworth.

Pre mid-90s-ish seven digit phone number, on a sticker for what could quite well have been the original dealer.

..and the two-spoke wheel that dwarfs the four 10" nungers that pin it to the race track; rounding-up my photo tour of 3.2 adorable little meters of metallic-blue briquette..

Done. Good fun.