A fast, light car that could be your daily driver. What if you can also use on track? It always sounds like a good compromize, doesn’t it? That was the spirit of Ginetta. The Ginetta G4 was the emblematic car of this English sports car manufacturer. Text: Thomas Z. © Images: Lucra Cars & British Motor Race ©

A Lotus design

The objective is to be a cost effective weekday road car and a weekend racer. Presented at the 1961 at the Racing Car Show of London, it was voted “most beautiful car of the show”. The design is similar to the Lotus Eleven: the rounded bumps on top of the front light but also the rounded tailfins on the original G4 (Phase 1) is quite similar to the Lotus. It isn’t a big surprise because Trevers Walklett, one of the founding brother of Ginetta, was quoted that the Lotus Eleven race car inspired the design of the G4. The series II, had a bigger rear bodywork, extanded by approximately 8″ to improve the luggage capacity. The small rear tailfins of the serie I disappeared in the second one.

The Ginetta G4 is a lightweight car: its body is made of resin and glass fiber and weights around 500 kg! It’s so light that if you find one in the street, you’d just have to call some friend to lift it and take it home! (We’re not saying you should do this).

The objective of the Ginetta G4? Performance

Originally commercialised with the 997cc Ford 105E engine, it was then available with any 4 cylinders Ford engine, the one of 1340cc which delivered 91HP. It gave the G4 a top speed of 193 km/h. Its performances gave the Ginetta the necessary strength to beat the MG MGB and the Triumph TR but also the Jaguar 3.8, which have a similar top speed and acceleration. Yet, they weight 1440 kg, nearly a tone heavier!

In August 1964 Chris Meek, one of the Ginetta’s driver, change the engine to a Ford Cosworth of 1’650cc and beat the lap time record which has held by a Porsche 904. The Ginetta wasn’t only racing in England: it also proved its skills on international circuits like the Nurburgring, Sebring, Silverstone, Spa and Singapore. Its racing results and performance were noticed by the public and therefore, as a result, increased sales. 500 units of the Ginetta G4 were sold in 1964. The most extreme version of the Ginetta, the G4R, powered this time with the Lotus twin cam engine, developed around 180hp. The car was so fast that it was able to give trouble to the AC Cobra, Jaguar E-Type and even some Ferrari 250LM !

Ginetta G4
Ginetta G4


Finally we could say that the Ginetta is a good looking car with some good performance for its time. Let’s remember that it was sold in the 60s.

Nevertheless, another car manufacturer thought that a light car wasn’t enough to get some fun. Their motto is: “You could build a car that featured both extreme lightweight and large V8 power.” So we think you guess what happened to our little G4…

Let us introduce you: the Lucra LC470

If you, by any chance, watched Fast and Furious 6, there is one Lucra in it. Remember the scene of the tank car? When Tej Parker (Ludacris) is on the bridge giving orders , we can see a green and yellow car behind him, which unfortunately stands still. This car is the Lucra LC470.

The Lucra is based on the Ginetta G4 but fitted with a V8 engin. As one engine isn’t enough, Lucra gives the oppurtinity to their customer to choose between three V8 engines: the Mercedes AMG 6.3 V8 (Welstec Supercharger optional), the GM LS3 6.3L and the GM LS 7.0L. These engines equipped respectively the SLS AMG and the Corvette. Needless to say that the Lucra has got a lack of power .

The LC470 doesn’t use the engine as stock: Lucra upgrades it! For instance, the LS 7.0L develops over 600HP and the car weighs less than 900 kg (2000lbs). So the 0 to 60 is done in about 2.7 sec only and the quarter miles in 10.1s and even 9.1s with the highest performance engine! As in comparison, the Bugatti Veyron SS does the 0 to 60 in about 2.5 sec and the quarter miles in 9.7 seconds but weighs around 2000kg!

The Lucra LC470 can torch anything

In an interview with Luke Richards, the founder of Lucra, said that his father told him that a car can go fast in a corner or fast in a straight line, but not both. The L470 is the answer to that. As he said :

So that is basically what we did: we made a car that weighs the same as a Lotus but have the power of a big V8 muscle car. Even if it is a rear wheel-drive, have a tremendous power/weight ratio, the car is very easy to drive. Even a novice can handle one with 600hp”

Luke Richards

The top speed should be around 220 mph (354 km/h) but they didn’t have the opportunity to reach this speed yet. Never seen it riding? Don’t worry , we posted a video of it below (take-off start at 20 seconds). As a conclusion, it’s not wrong to say that the Lucra LC470 could be considered as the Cobra of the 21th century and obviously a spectacular power/weight ratio. One of a kind.

Lucra LC470
Lucra LC470


Many years separate the Ginetta G4 from the Lucra LC470 and the Ginetta is way more affordable than the Lucra. A G4 should be around 7’500€ while the brand new LC470 should be 100’000€, fitted with the biggest engine. So, which on? The classic English car or the American muscle car? Which one would, you choose?

We would like to thank Mr. Kazushige Tanase (check out his work here) and Mr. Howie Fowler (check out his work here).