2018 marks the 60th Anniversary of Ginetta Cars. Here’s DSC’s timeline of the journey so far!
1958 – 1962: Based in Woodbridge, Suffolk and founded by the Walkett Brothers (Bob, Ivor, Trevers and Douglas). After producing a long gone one-off racing ‘special’ (below) the brothers moved on to produce the G2 ‘kit’ car and the later G3 ‘Fairlite’
(G1 and G3 pics via Ginetta Owners Club website)
1962 – 1972: Moved to Witham in Essex. In response to demand for the company’s first real success, the pretty G4, built first as an open topped sportscar but later with a coupe body, this was the first Ginetta designed to be usable as a road car, over 500 were eventually built through until 1968.
The company briefly moved to a larger workshop in Sudbury, Suffolk between 1972 and 1974 before returning to Witham where they remained until 1989 producing a range of road going and competition cars including the Hilman Imp powered G15 which became the company’s most successful product with some 800 cars built between 1967 and 1974.
1990 – 2005: The original company expanded and moved to Scunthorpe in 1988 from where it was acquired the following year by a group of Sheffield-based businessmen, led by Martin Phaff who became the Managing Director establishing a successful one-make race series for the G27, morphing later into the open-topped G20. Production of the G27 ended in 2001 by which time the company was struggling financially.
2005: Ginetta was acquired by Lawrence Tomlinson’s LNT Automotive and a new factory was established in Garforth, West Yorkshire.
The G20 initially stayed in production, offered in coupe form for the new Ginetta Junior Championship for younger drivers, and in open topped form for one make and open racing.
2008: Ginetta started producing the new G50 from 2008, designed in-house the car initially saw service in Ginetta’s own one-make ‘G50 Cup’, the Championship initially supported the British GT and British Formula 3 Championships, moving to support the British Touring Car Championship in 2009 where it, and its successor Championships, have raced ever since .
The G50 is often credited as the ‘saviour’ of the now booming GT4 formula, struggling for grid numbers in its early days the G50 was allowed to compete as a one-make racer and immediately proved both popular and competitive taking the Drivers Championship in 2009 with Joe Osborne and winning a large number of GT races and Championships, in both sprint and endurance formats, around the world. The car was also produced in electrically powered form, and with Zytek V8 power as the G50Z
2010: Saw the new G40 introduced, and rolled out in multiple levels of tune with the G40R also available in road & race trim. the car is now the platform for the Ginetta Junior Championship, GRDC and G40 Cup and GT5 Challenge. The in-house race team even drove a G40R from the factory, took part in, and won, their class in the 2012 Britcar 24 Hours, then drove the car home again!
2011: Saw the G55 replace the successful G50 and again see success in both one-make and GT racing – the G55 and G50 have won the SP3 (GT4) class at the Dubai 24 Hours an astounding five times in the past six years and the British GT Championship’s GT4 class seven times in the past nine years. The car has also seen competition in GT3 form with big V8 power from both Nissan and Chevrolet power plants.
2015: Saw Ginetta enter the world of sports prototype racing, kick starting the ACO’s LMP3 concept with their new offering which dominated the inaugural year of competition, winning every race in the European Le Mans Series and taking the Championship for Charlie Robertson and Olympic cycling legend Sir Chris Hoy.
2016:Ssaw the same basic carbon chassis evolved into a far more capable beast, the G57 powered by a 6.2 litre Chevy V8 and featuring advanced aerodynamics, the cars have gone on to race winning success in Europe, Asia and North America.
2018: Sees the unveiling of the Le Mans bound G60-LT-P1, destined for competition in the LMP1 class in the FIA World Endurance Championship and at the Le Mans 24 Hours.
The anniversary year also saw the debut of the the new Ginetta G58 sports prototype featuring an all new Ginetta designed and built 6.3 litre V8 engine.