Skoda has restored its glorious endurance racer

Skoda has restored its glorious endurance racer

You may have heard of the Skoda 1100 OHC Spider. It's the Czech company’s crown jewel ― a 1950s prototype racer that we were inexplicably let loose in back in 2018. Skinny cross-ply tires and heavy rain made for much sideways action in a $338293 Skoda.

But did you know that Skoda also built an 1100 OHC Coupe? It actually built two of the things back in 1959 and 1960. Both raced until regulation changes forced their retirement in 1962, and in 1966 they were sold into private hands. Both were subsequently destroyed in road accidents.

Now though, employees from the Skoda Museum and Skoda's prototype center have fully restored the first 1959 car. And it looks quite glorious. Pretty much everything on the OHC Coupe has been revived, with any surviving components completely refreshed and the original engine plucked from its display at Skoda's school of engineering in Mladá Boleslav. Apparently, the original plan was just to restore the chassis and display it alongside the only other remaining Spider in the Skoda Museum. We're delighted, they ended up going all the way.

The OHC Coupe weighs just 555kg thanks to its lightweight frame and hand-beaten aluminum body panels. An engine is a four-cylinder unit from a period 440 Spartak, although the racer received a fair few modifications in the late 1950s to take power from around 40bhp to 92bhp. The engine sits behind the front axle for almost-perfect weight distribution and is connected to a five-speed manual gearbox. Oh, and with the right gearing, it could hit a top speed of 124mph.

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