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Most obscure car companies

Today we’re taking a look beyond the world of Fords and Ferraris and heading off the beaten track. What auto delights will we find?


This unlikely manufacturer is actually based in Leeds and not Milan. Founded in 1958 by four brothers, Ginetta now specialises in racing and sports cars. Their first ever car, not actually planned for production (but later became known as the Ginetta G1) was based on the pre-war Wolseley Hornet. Things have advanced a bit since then and Ginetta have developed many an award-winning car.

They also have the Ginetta Racing Drivers Club, which allows members the chance to hone their racing behind the wheel of a proper British sports car. Interested? The package includes a Ginetta G40 Club Car, one-on-one tuition, a four round racing championship, not to mention a ton of events.


Yes, ok, we admit it. Gumpert largely made it on to the list because of it’s amazing name! A German supercar manufacturer founded by Roland Gumpert, the ex-director of Audi sport. Under his management Audi won 25 Wold Rally Championships races and 4 World Rally Championship titles. Suffice to say, he knows his stuff.

In 2001 Roland’s grand plan at Gumpert was to create a new hybrid car which was not only race-ready but also street legal. Together with Audi he started work. In July 2008 the Apollo Sport was featured on Topgear. It scored a lap time of 1.17.1 and became the new leader on the Power Lap board, beating the former leader the Ascari A10 by 0.2 seconds.


Australia isn’t known as a powerhouse of car manufacturing, but we’re big fans of their Elfin brand. They’ve been making Aussie sports car for over 50 years and have an incredible history of 29 championships and major Grand Prix titles. What makes Elfin stand out? Their cars – like their namesake – are super light and fast.

Founded by successful racer Garrie Cooper, the company now currently belongs to British racing driver Tom Walkinshaw, though it is still located in Melbourne Australia.

Caparo Vehicle Technologies 

CVT (originally known as Freestream) is a British auto company that provides technology development, materials engineering and design services to the auto industry.

The company was originally founded by Graham Halstead and Ben Scott-Geddes, both former engineers who worked on the McLaren F1 project. However, in 2006 the company was taken over by Caparo Vehicle Technologies. The auto giant currently produce the T1 sports car!

Lightning Car Company

So our last shout hasn’t actually produced anything yet, but we have high hopes! They are currently eight years into the production of an electric sports car, the Lightening GT. Originally set to begin deliveries in 2009, it has been pushed back. And then pushed back some more.

The GT can accelerate to 60 mph in 5 seconds and can reach a top speed of 130mph. Plus it’s a truly British car, their website states: “The Lightning is a truly British car with 100% ownership and over 80% of components including the drive train being from GB, we don’t know of any other car as British as ours.”

It’s now due for release at the end of the year. Will the lads from Coventry manage it? Place your bets! 

Offbeat  07/07/2015 09:21:27

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