Thursday, 11 August 2011

De Joux: Blue but not true?

Arch Mini derivatives fan and multiple De Joux GT owner Graeme Farr from New Zealand (remember?) got in touch to say hello plus to tell about a blue De Joux that has turned up on a New Zealand auction website (see here). The car is offered for sale as a 2002 model which supposedly indicates it is a repro, probably made from the mould taken from an original body (in fact quite a few De Joux' appear to be unofficially made ones). Anyway: but when you look closer to the blue car it seems not quite right. Not just because of the modern looking spoilers and bigger wheel arches. Just take a look at the windscreen that is clearly taller and the roof line that is raised. Then there are the unusual door apertures that De Joux GTs normally don't have, as well as Morris Marina style door handles. There is a hatchback door, a fuel filler in the side panel plus double rear lights. And there are more details that seem strange. Just compare it with the pictures of the orange car that Graeme provided me with. What on earth is this much modernized GT?

UPDATE 11th August: It took Tim Neal only a couple of hours to come up with all the missing information. He wrote: "I know the car and owner. It was built from an original un-used shell. As it had never been built or registered it takes on the date of first years registration (under NZ laws). Also as it in effect is a new car it had to meet the current standards. The original screens do not pass the NZ standards, so the owner adapted the windscreen from I think it was either a Volvo or Saab and as its a modern screen it can't be cut down so they had to raise the roof line to get it to fit. The fuel filler had to be moved again for the same legal reasons. A lot of work has gone in to the car, but in honesty it's not been done especially well, its rough finish in areas, mechanically adequate but not stunning. At $12500 NZD its probably over valued. Last time I saw it was at Taupo Mini fun day about May 2010" That does explain a lot! Thank you very much Tim.

De Joux GT. Left the original, at right the modernized version

Double rear lights, hatchback door, raised roof line, relocated filler cap...

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