Got a message from Matt Blackhurst that read I think you might appreciate a Golf bodied, Beetle panned, Ford ignitioned, Mazda rotary powered, Morris Minor wheeled, Triumph Dolomite seat framed car and instantly I was intrigued.
Being a very peculiar mix of several different cars and components I somewhat expected a haphazard mash-up, but what I found therein was quite the opposite. The Beetle pan underneath a water-cooled shell has been done a before but never quite like this.
According to Slam Sanctuary, where these photos originate, the running Mk1 was taken off the road last year for an engine swap.
After lengthy discussions, and no doubt some fire-water, a Mazda 13b rotary engine was chosen to be the new driving force of the car.
A rotary motor, with 210hp, in a car that weighs likely not a lot sounds like a hell of a time but doesn’t really put itself together so a lot of custom work has been necessary.
The motor is backed by a 4 speed pyramid bus transmission with a swapped in diff to prevent the drive line from grenading. There’s also a few other CV joint tricks throw into the mix to get everything to work out at the height the car sits at.
It’s also probably worth noting that the motor is a little big so a lot of the rear panel had to be sacrificed to get it to fit.
Then cooling considerations had to be considered as well as further modifications for the ride height. Really you should just head over to Slam Sanctuary and check out the build in it’s entirety. It’s truly crazy and remarkable.
Thanks for the tip Matt!