My friend Joe Lee sent me this article from the July 1980 issue of Dune Buggies and Hot VWs. He writes, “The Griffin is one of the best looking kitcar which with Formula 1 style according to me. But unfortunately I’ve never seen it in production or shows.”
YOU BUILD IT: A STREET LEGAL FORMULA SUPER VEE TWO SEATER
BY JOHN G. RETTIE
Here we are again back to the old “Boy do we get a lot of letters and phone calls” department Yep. you got it-one of the most asked questions is “Where can I get plans or drawings so that I can build my own super street car’” For a very long time there weren’t any available, that is until John Griffiths gave us a call and told us all about his super street two-seater which was naturally called the “Griffin ” John’s mam objective is to sell full scale or 50% reduction plans However, he will also be offering different stages of completed cars also.
Basically the Griffin is a two-seat specially constructed vehicle The prototype shown here has a fully adjustable independent suspension with a semi-monocoque chassis It has a rack and pinion steering, laminated windshield, wipers, handbrake, headlights, running lights, fuel cell and proper ground clear ance The engine sits midship and is a 1835cc VW which is mated to a Porsche 914 five-speed gearbox The Griffin is also in compliance with California DMV regulations where applicable to specially constructed vehicles The 1000 lb ve hide has the following estimated speeds at 6000 rpm. 1st-35mph, 2nd-57mph, 3rd-86mph, 4th —116mph, and an estimated top speed of 152mph in 5th gear
More information is available on the Griffin concerning the plans or a vehicle in various stages of completion by writing to John Griffiths, 12606 Woodbine St. Dept HVW, Los Angeles CA 90066 [note: I doubt this address is still good after nearly thirty years!]
A side profile shows just how slippery the Griffin is and why its 1835cc powerplant and Porsche 5-speed trans can give it an estimated top speed of 152mph at 6000 rpm
Let’s see, there’s lights, windshield, wipers, running lights, rear view mirrors—just about everything to make it street legal in most states.
LEFT: The shifter is on the lefthand side and will take some getting used to Gauges are m plain sight and easy to read. MIDDLE: Rear suspension consists of alloy hub carriers, double trailing arms, reversed lower A arm with nylon bushings, and drum brakes IRS configuration is also retained. RIGHT: Front end has rack and pinion steering, disc brakes Ghia up rights, and lower A arms.
ABOVE: The body consists of three separate fiberglass pieces. LEFT: A closer look at the front suspension finds disc brakes, adjustable spherical ball joints, and adjustable coil over shocks.RIGHT: The seats are formed by aluminum panels permanently riveted to the chassis.