In response to our message about the Rizovari DX11 we got the maker's address through Martin Spoelstra. We will pursue that! But the message also put the kit cars phenomenon in the limelight once again. And because kit cars were often open, such a sun always comes in handy.
Kit cars: all classics
Kit cars are now all 30 or or at least 25 + ers. So classics. But bastard classics. And that they could also be delivered ready-made? Did that make the 'manufacturers' into car manufacturers?
Lots of VW and 2CV platforms
Many kit cars were based on VW platforms, engines and transmissions. Nice and easy. Also for type approval. Another large part was made up of an 'own' chassis where - more or less fitting - all kinds of parts of other brands and types could be submerged, added to and made up. That varied from front wheel suspensions to rear light glasses.
Over the years there have been hundreds and hundreds of kit car 'builders'. Some of them reached the production of 1 pcs. But of the Manx 'primal buggy' and Cobra Replicas, thousands have been made - usually without the permission of anyone. And even the copies were copied. But Porsche Speedsters, Lotus 7 and Jaguar E-Type 'fakes' are there to sort it out too. Don't necessarily think of 'plastic is fantastic' and 'Tupperware' stuff. A very nice Speedster replica can cost just € 40.000.
The build quality of those dreams varied 'ex works' as much as if they were made in drafty sheds or clean home garages. Because if you want to make your dream come true with limited resources and skills, then you have to compromise.
In the Netherlands we had Ruska from Amsterdam who sold hundreds of buggies a year. And the Zutphense Burton is of course a contemporary example of what is still possible and allowed.
Burton is also one of the suppliers that not only provides an excellent product, but also optimal guidance. Certainly in the past there were quite a few English 'manufacturers' who work with the French style. But if you find such a survivor now, most imperfections will have been worked out by now.
There are a number of kit car specialists and clubs here in the Netherlands. The General (VW) Buggy Club Nederland must be the largest of the clubs. In 1999 the club had its 25th anniversary. That party was celebrated with the publication 'the buggy, our holy cow'. We found a ZGAN copy of it via 'boekwinkeltjes.nl'. The ISBN number is 90-901-3260-0.
It is a fantastic, informative book that does not only cover VW-based kit cars. And it goes to show how heartbreakingly endearing some of the constructs were. But there are also copies of which you spontaneously become very greedy.
We are curious
Bottom line, we are very curious whether there are still free website owners of kit cars among the readers of this website. If you have something like this, you can register!