Marcos Mantis - Sold - £23,995
The British sports car industry is renowned for producing fantastic sports cars that offer great style and a unique driving experience. Often the quest to create cars that brought great success both on the road and on the circuit was often outweighed by the true commercial economics to produce them profitably generally leading to a turbulent existence.
Companies like Lotus, TVR, Ginetta and Marcos are all names that have succeeded and failed in equal measure over the years.
Jem Marsh and Frank Costin, who took the first three letters of their surnames to devise a name for the new company, founded the Marcos marque in 1959. The first cars drew on Costin’s aviation experience and were remarkable in their use of wood laminates for the monocoque body/chassis unit. Lightweight and good streamlining gave outstanding performance from the relatively modest 1 litre and 1.5 litre Ford engines they used.
Marcos earned its market pedigree on the racetrack in the early days with notable customers including Jackie Stewart, Derek Bell, Jackie Oliver and Jonathan Palmer.
They continued to build various models through the turbulent 60s, 70s and 80s by now with much bigger V6 and V8 engines before securing financial backing to build an exciting new range of cars in the 90s. This would also take the company back to Le Mans and winning GT races around the world with the LM series.
In 1997 the LM series evolved into the Mantis featuring the race proven LM chassis but fitted with a new body and Mustang Quad Cam V8 engine. This model continued until the company finally closed under the directorship of the Marsh family in 2001.
Although it is no longer possible to buy a new Marcos, the Mantis can still be seen winning its class in the UK Britcar GT series today against established current marques, which is a true testimony to the basic design of the car.
This example was produced in 1999 and is a road version in Spyder form finished in silver metallic with black hide and blue buff carpets. Technical features include a 4.6 quad cam 32 valve V8 Mustang engine, electric windows/ mirrors, air conditioning, stainless steel exhaust system, roll bar, competition Dymag wheels, power steering and a folding soft top.
It goes without saying with a 350BHP V8 engine, this Marcos is a brisk performer and with sure footed handling from its race bred chassis offers a truly invigorating driving experience but without the nervous antics of a comparable TVR.
It has just 19,000 miles and two owners from new and offers a unique ownership proposition with low running costs and a continued supply of parts and service from Marcos Heritage.
To find a Mantis for sale today is rare so if you like the car but not the colour combination why not talk to us about repainting or re trimming in a colour of your choice.