Grice/Bond Bathurst Commodore model + Fred Opert book + HDT Torana t-shirt + more - Gearbox 445

By: Unique Cars magazine

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gearbox gearbox

Inside this month's Unique Cars gearbox...


1. Bathurst Bomber


For many this will bring back strange days at Bathurst, when it was Mazda RX-7s and Commodores dominating the bruising James Hardie 1000. We’ve kind of got used to seeing the winning cars glorified across the years and it’s nice to see some of the cars close behind being given their moment in the sun. This STP Roadways-backed Commodore was driven to third place in 1983 by Alan Grice and Colin Bond. It’s a new release and these cars are generally priced around the $300 mark.

2. Wire world


While low-maintence mags are wonderful things, there are times when nothing but a proper wire wheel will look right.

Restoring a clapped-out unit is both time-consuming and expensive, so a new replacement can make sense. A mob called Australian Classic Wire Wheels will cheerfully sell you a set, plus a matching set of knock-on stubs, if you need them as well. Cost for the wheels is around $295 a pop. While the subs for an XK150 (for example) cost $285 each.


3. Fred Opert’s story


You’re forgiven if you’ve never heard of Fred Opert, but his story is one of those rollicking yarns that’s well worth a read. He’s credited with taking European formula racing to the USA, and introducing a number of American teams to Europe.

The back page describes his journey as taking him from a brief stint in a New York jail to the glitzy world of Formula 1.

It’s written by Peter R Hill and published by Veloce. Available through Motor Book World at $45.

4. Stop me


Power Brakes in Adelaide is something of a local institution. Over the years it’s changed from a general engineering shop, to an automotive workshop and brake component machinist, to a dedicated brake service operation that now does a significant share of its business on the internet. It has a massive databse collected over the decades, which means it can remake and adapt components for most things with four wheels and are the go-to place for the restorer.

5. Zed camber


Righto, for you Datsun 240/260/280Z builders out there, Kmac has a complete set of adjustable top strut mounts that allows the more technically-minded among you to adjust camber and caster in the front end. It’s billed as a track and street solution and would be an interesting mod for those of you chasing just that little bit extra in the handling department. The kit includes the two adjustable mounts plus assorted bushes and rubbers. Cost is $545 for a pair.

6. A9X wear


Do you fancy reliving the good old days when the pairing of Peter Brock and Jim Richards seemed unbeatable in that two-door rocket called the A9X? This shirt from HDT celebrates the 1978-79 success of the car on the Mount. It looks smart and we’re assured its a 180gsm combed cotton, printed in Australia. How much? To you, $35.


From Unique Cars #445, Oct 2020 

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