When famed petrolhead and car collector Jay Leno states that your car is ‘one of the prettiest and most unusual sports cars of all time’, that’s quite the compliment. The star car of this week’s episode of Jay Leno’s Garage is a 1971 Marcos GT.
Jay spotted this beautiful blue example at a car show and couldn’t help but ask its owner to bring it along to the garage. It belongs to Frazer Douglas who highlights many of the unusual features of the Marcos, including how early cars actually had a plywood chassis. ‘They had 386 different plywood pieces laminated together. They were very strong, but in the end they had to switch to steel chassises because they were so expensive to produce.’ The wooden chassis was actually inspired by the Mosquito World War 2 fighter-bomber which was also made of wood.
The Marcos is a tiny car being just 43-inches tall and dwarfed by Leno when side by side. Regardless of its scale, the GT’s sleek aerodynamic profile is captivating with its lengthy proportions and Kammback rear end. Finished in blue, this lightweight sports car looks fantastic.
A variety of engined were placed under that long hood over the car’s production life, but this example makes use of a 155hp Ford 3.0-liter V6. It was one of the last incarnations of the GT before the company went out of business in 1972.
The aircraft inspired interior can cater for larger drivers, despite the car’s small size, thanks to an adjustable peddle box. Leno remarks that ‘actually once you’re in, it is very comfortable’.
With that naturally aspirated V6 singing, Jay hits the road with Frazer. The car’s small scale is highlighted by the regular models on the streets that tower over this Marcos, but this doesn’t bother Leno. ‘To me it’s all about how a car makes you feel when you’re driving it, and you feel like you’re in something bigger and more substantial. It’s a real racy sort of feeling. You get a lot of road feel through the car.’
Check out the video for a rare look at this British classic.
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