Anyone who knows anything about kit cars has heard of Ginetta. Their history is well documented and as all of their cars were sold as kits (although the first two cars, the G2 and G3 were Ford Eight and Ten based) Ginetta cars are outside the realms of this web site.
However, the G3 was offered as a body only and marketed as the Fairlite and so deserves a page of its own .
The earliest advert I can find is from Nov 1958 and states that the body could be fitted to the Ford Eight and Ten horsepower chassis from 1932 onwards, (does this mean that it would fit the long and short wheelbases) and was priced at £49.0.0. No other details were given, but the advert does state that further details would be given on the receipt of an S.A.E. Presumably there was either a leaflet or a sales brochure produced, none of which I have at the moment.
The picture at the top of the page is taken from the original advert. The wheels on this car, if they are to the Ford 5 stud pattern, are probably either Porsche` or Vauxhall E series.
It appears that many Fairlite's were built on the pre war Ford chassis. The one pictured above was built by Roger Hamilton-Reade in 1960 and was based on a Model Y that was bought for £5. Roger stated that it took him three weeks to prepare the body work and spray it as he wasn't too happy with the finish of the car when it came from the factory.
This picture was actually captioned as a Delta (spot the similarity) in a motoring publication some years ago. Again it is based on a pre war Ford.
This Fairlite has seen quite a few owners over the years, but has now found someone to restore her. Mike Bennett is well under way with the restoration and below is a picture of its pre war Ford chassis complete with an independent front suspension unit, the make of which we would like to find out. Its interesting to note that all the cars pictured on this page have a very similar windscreen, was this a factory option?
I'm not sure how long the Fairlite was available for as the adverts stopped at the end of 1960 and the publications I have read can't even get the start date right, so an end date of 1960 seems very improbable. The G4 was introduced to the world at the 1961 racing car show, but while not a featured car on the stand, the G3 demonstrator was parked outside for customer to look at. This would take production of the G3 and the Fairlite into 1961.
The above picture was published in January 1962 and stated that the G3 body was available for fitment to the Ford chassis for the price of £59. The price had increased, but you would expect that as the car was developed. How far did production go into 1962, did it reach 1963? Any information on this early part of Ginetta's history would be gratefully received.