Ginetta Cars Limited
Founded 1958
Founder(s) Walklett brothers
Headquarters Leeds, West Yorkshire, United Kingdom
Industry Automotive
Products Sports cars
Ginetta G15 875cc August 1972

1969 Ginetta G15

Ginetta G21 1974 Castle Hedingham near factory 2008

1974 Ginetta G21

Ginetta G33 V8

1992 Ginetta G33


1996 Ginetta G27 series 3


2005 Ginetta G20


1997 Ginetta G4R


2006 Ginetta G12 by DARE

Ginetta Cars was founded in 1958 by the four Walklett brothers (Bob, Ivor, Trevers and Douglas) in Woodbridge, Suffolk, England. The cars are currently (2011) made in Garforth, West Yorkshire.

The first car, not destined for production, which subsequently became known as the G1 was based on a pre war Wolseley Hornet.[1] From their original base, the company moved to Witham, Essex in 1962 and between 1972 and 1974 operated from larger premises in Sudbury, Suffolk before returning to Witham where they remained until 1989.

Under the Walkletts, Trevers was mainly responsible for styling, Ivor for engineering, Douglas, management and Bob sales. The company enjoyed 31 years of solvent trading without any Government handouts and under the skilful leadership of Bob Walklett the company always adapted to suit the economic conditions of the day.

Following the retirement of the Walkletts in 1989 the company was sold but failed and was then bought by an international group of enthusiasts and was based in Sheffield and run by managing director Martin Phaff producing the G20 and G33.

In late 2005 Ginetta was acquired by LNT Automotive, a company run by Yorkshire businessman and racing car driver Lawrence Tomlinson and in mid 2007 Ginetta moved to a state-of-the-art factory near Leeds to replace the Sheffield works with a target to sell 300 cars a year including the G40 G50 and G55.

In March 2010, Ginetta acquired British sports car manufacturer Farbio re-badged the Ginetta F400. In March 2011, Ginetta launched its latest model the G55, running in the GT4 Michelin Ginetta GT Supercup and contender for GT3.

Road carsEdit

The first car, the G2, was produced as a kit for enthusiasts and consisted of a tubular frame chassis to take Ford components and aluminium body. About 100 were made. The G3 was introduced with glass fibre body in 1959 to be followed by the G4 in 1961. [2]

The G4 used the new Ford 105E engine and had a glass fibre GT style body and the suspension was updated to coil springing at the front with Ford live axle at the rear. Whereas the G2 and G3 had been designed for competition the G4 was usable as an everyday car but still was very competitive in motor sport with numerous successes. Over 500 were made up to 1969 with a variety of Ford engines. In 1963 a coupé was introduced alongside the open car and a BMC axle replaced the Ford one at the rear. [3] On test the car reached 120 mph (190 km/h) with a 1500 cc engine. [4] The series III version of 1966 added the then popular pop up headlights. Production stopped in 1968 but was revived in 1981 with the Series IV which was two inches wider and three inches (76 mm) longer than the III.

The G10 and G11 from 1964 were higher powered versions with 4.7 litre Ford V8 and MGB engines respectively. The G12 was a mid-engined competition car.

In 1967 the G15 was launched with Hillman Imp engine. This two seater coupé had a glass fibre body bolted to a tube chassis and used Imp rear and Triumph front suspension. Over 800 were made up to 1974 and the car was fully type approved allowing for the first time complete Ginetta cars to be sold. Eight G15s were engineered for Volkswagen engines and called the Super S.

In 1970 it was joined by the larger G21 initially available with the 1599 cc Ford Kent engine or 3 litre Ford V6 engines.[5] The 1725 cc Sunbeam Rapier subsequently became the standard four cylinder engine for the car. The model was later updated to become the closed G24 or open top G23. The G19 was a Formula 3 single seater but only one was ever made.

Not quite in the tradition of the sports cars was the GRS, a large estate car based on Hillman Hunter mechanicals.

Following reorganisation the company moved to Scunthorpe and started making cars in kit form again in the 1980s starting with the G27, an update on the old G4, and the G26 G 28 G30 G31 using Ford parts. It was also decided to re-enter the complete car business with the mid engined G32 with a choice of 1.6 and 1.9 litre 4 cylinder engines available as a coupé or convertible and the G33 convertible with 3.9 litre Rover V8 capable of 145 mph (233 km/h) and a 0-60 mph time of 5 seconds. In 1990 the G32 coupé cost £13700, the convertible £14600 and the G33 £17800.

Racing carsEdit

In 1964 Ginetta produced a Formula Three racing car with a monocoque glass-fibre chassis. An earlier spaceframe car was built but never raced. [6] The car, fitted with a Ford engine, was entered by Ginetta Cars Ltd., for Chris Meek to drive at the Crystal Palace circuit on 5 September 1964.[7]

Ginetta Challenge ChampionshipEdit

Ginetta G20 Junior

An example of a Ginetta G20 hardtop, used in the Ginetta Junior Championship.

Julien Draper Ginetta G50

Julien Draper's Ginetta G50 at the 2009 BTCC Festival in Edinburgh.

The Ginetta Challenge Championship represents a low cost opportunity to become involved in competitive motor racing in the Ginetta G40 race car. The Championship is a one make series updated for 2008 with sealed Ford Zetec 1.8 litre engines, sealed gearboxes and differentials. Combined with controlled tyres and suspension parts, this ensures that it is the most popular, cost effective but competitive racing series in Britain. The 2011 series is composed of 20 rounds over 10 dates as part of the support package for the British GT/Formula 3 and two stand alone BARC Truck Festivals.

Ginetta Junior ChampionshipEdit

Main article: Ginetta Junior Championship

Junior Ginetta Championship was introduced in 2003 for racers aged 14 – 16 years old as a natural progression route from kart racing. The affordable one make series with sealed Ford Zetec 1.4 litre engines ensures safe, controlled racing due to the tubular steel chassis, full integral FIA approved roll cage and fibre- glass shell. The 2011 series consists of 24 rounds over 12 dates in support of the British Touring Car package and two stand alone Ginetta Festivals.

Ginetta GT SupercupEdit

Main article: Ginetta GT Supercup

Ginetta has launched a new British sports car for 2011. Nominated the Ginetta G55, the car has been designed in-house at Ginetta’s new purpose-built factory in Leeds and is powered by a front-mid mounted Ford 3.7 litre V6 delivering 300 bhp (224 kW/304 PS). The G55 will be a versatile race car able to race not only in its own one make championship but also in the British and European GT4 and GT3 categories. It will also be eligible for numerous British & European GT categories of the like of Britcar, Spanish GT etc.

A G50/G55 single-make race Championship will run in 2011 with the focus on keeping running costs to a minimum by using control tyres, control fuel and low maintenance costs through clever design. This car and its Championship is designed to bridge the gap between single-make sports car racing such as the current Ginetta Challenge championship – and GT cars such as the new GT4 Championship, GT3 and GT2 racing.


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See alsoEdit

References / sources Edit

  1. Georgano, N. (2000). Beaulieu Encyclopedia of the Automobile. London: HMSO. ISBN 1-57958-293-1. 
  2. For road test see Motor Sport, September 1962, Pages 690, 693.
  3. Motor Sport, May 1963, Pages 345-346.
  4. Motor Sport, April 1964, Pages 260-261.
  5. "Motor Show Number: Car by Car Guide and Ginetta advertisement", Motor nbr 3565: Pages 21 & 175. date 17 October 1970. 
  6. Motor Sport, July 1964, Page 532.
  7. Crystal Palace Official Programme, National Car Race Meeting, Page 10, 5 September 1964.


  • Walklett, Bob (1994). Ginetta - The Inside Story: 31 Years of British Specialist Car Manufacturer. Bookmarque Publishing. ISBN 1-870519-28-0. 
  • Rose, John (1988). Ginetta: The Illustrated History. G T Foulis & Co Ltd. ISBN 0-85429-685-9. 
  • Pyman, T (2004). History of the Ginetta G4. Bookmarque Publishing. ISBN 1-870519-69-8. 

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