1952 Fairchild Panhard H-Modified Vintage Race Car
s/n 85 6526
Green with White/ Black
Believed to be the third of just four `Nichols Specials, this example was located by the current owner about 20 years ago neglected and less the original motor. It was originally raced in period by Perry Peron, and was built at least in part by Stan Bucklin. The current owner was able to contact both Jerry Fairchild and Dr. Bill Molle. After the car was restored Dr. Molle drove the car at Laguna Secca on its maiden run.
Original Twin Overhead Cam motor that Jerry had kept for years (Jerry had passed away about 6 months earlier). Although I still have the motor (intact) and most of the fuel injection set-up- I have never tried to run it.
Throughout the history of the Fairchild it was raced with various versions of Panhard power units. Among them include the Fuel Injected units as described in the ‘Sportscar Specials’ book. It was also raced with a fuel injected twin overhead cam, one of a kind Panhard engine developed by Jerry Fairchild. This car was also run with a production supercharger as used on the Panhard Junior! Currently the car is run with a motor developed by Don Racine which is a copy of the motor as used in the Aardvark.
Engine: Fairchild Panhard, 2 cylinder 4-stroke, of 850cc, Weber Carb, running on a 9.5:1 compression, Twin Plug heads, Electronic ignition. It develops about 67bhp at 6,500rpm.
Transmission: Four speed box integral with front wheel drive system, synchromesh 2nd thru 4th.Chassis: Multi-tube space frame with stressed aluminum panels (Body work is Fiberglass). Front suspension is independent with two transverse springs, rear is semi-independent with ‘V’ axle and flexible center housing, and six transverse torsion car, with adjustable Houdaille shocks in the rear, tube shocks in front. Steering is rack and pinion. Front & rear brakes have aluminum drums.
Dimensions: Wheelbase 84 ic., overall length 112 in., overall height 32 in., overall width 48 in. minimum ground clearance 5 in. Front tread width 48 in., rear tread 48 in. Tires are 15” Dunlop Race, front and rear. Weight 984lbs., with a distribution of 60% in front and 40% at the rear
Article in “Sportscar Specials” of the 1960’s
Of the hundreds of Panhards built-up for racing, Dr.Bill Molle’s is a standout. Winning the H-modified Division in California Sports Car Club’s Pacific Coast Championship two years in succession (1958-1959) is quite a feat….the competition is rough, rugged and fast. He also copped 2nd in H-modified standings in SCCA Regional awards in 1958, and Class H-modified number two spot in Motoracing’s Pacific Coast Championship in 1959. Aside from the fact that Bill Molle is a leadfoot, the secret of this car’s winning ways lies in it’s Fairchild Panhard power-plant…….the first successful fuel injected system for two cycle, four stroke engines. Jerry Fairchild, designer of the system, is currently dickering with the French Panhard factory for manufacturing rights. The chassis, with tubular space frame and stressed inner paneling, was originally built by Perry Peron, and raced by him on West Coast events. The fiberglass body was designed by Murry Nichols, and later redesigned and rebuilt by Jim Byers, of El Segundo, California. Dr. Molle’s reason for owning a special is, “To get maximum racing for minimum money, and to experiment with mechanical improvements.”
Fantasy Junction +1 510 653 7555 Emeryville, California 94608 USA
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