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"Barquette"


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#1 Kpy

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Posted 13 March 2003 - 09:31

Help with translation, please!
Do we have an English word which is the equivalent of the French "barquette"? Or is it just an open sports-racer, like a Ferrari 312 P?

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#2 petefenelon

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Posted 13 March 2003 - 10:09

Originally posted by Kpy
Help with translation, please!
Do we have an English word which is the equivalent of the French "barquette"? Or is it just an open sports-racer, like a Ferrari 312 P?


Comes from the Italian "barchetta" or "little boat" - I think the term was first used to describe early Ferraris with full-width enveloping bodywork (i.e. not cycle-winged) in the late 40s, though there may be some earlier precedent. They don't look all that much like boats to me, but I can see a vague resemblance to 30s/40s powerboats I guess....


pete

#3 Kpy

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Posted 13 March 2003 - 10:38

Thanks for that.
Yes I know it's from barchetta, but how do I write it in English - can I just say eg: "an open 312P"?

#4 petefenelon

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Posted 13 March 2003 - 12:20

Originally posted by Kpy
Thanks for that.
Yes I know it's from barchetta, but how do I write it in English - can I just say eg: "an open 312P"?


Most English-speaking fans would understand "barchetta", I think.

#5 BRG

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Posted 13 March 2003 - 12:47

There isn't really a pukka English word for an open top racing car with full bodywork. If it had an erectable hood (eg like a road-car such as a Mazda MX5) it could be called a "convertible" or a "soft-top". But clearly a Ferrari 312P (or Audi R8 or whatever) doesn't fit into this category. Cars of this sort only really appeared in the 1950s - before that they were bnbased on road-cars and the formula above would still (sort-of) fit. But once constructors started making things like the Jaguar D type, which didn't have, and were never designed to have, a hood, the usually flexible and adaptable English language came up against a brick-wall. We could have followed the Italian (and apparently the French as well, although this is the first time that I have heard "barquette" used in this sense) and referred to it as a "small boat" - I imagine that "dinghy" would be the better English word! - but we didn't. We just called them open-top sports racers.

Sorry, Kpy! :

#6 Peter Morley

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Posted 13 March 2003 - 13:14

What about sports-prototype?

It seems that these days prototype is accepted to be an open car (presumably because all the closed cars claim to have some road car connection - like the Audi or Bentley Le-Mans car).

Closed cars would be sports-coupés or even sports-racers? But the latter covers all of them open or closed.

An open sports prototype could be the most accurate, but a bit of a mouthful.

Barchetta is particularly applied to the early 50's Ferrrai sports car (166?), but there was a Maserati sports-prototype a few years ago that was called the Barchetta (possibly built outside Maserati). Even so I don't think it really applies to more modern cars.

Something like a 312P is probably about as modern a car as you could get away with descriobing as a Barchetta.

#7 Kpy

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Posted 13 March 2003 - 14:07

Thanks for all your help guys. I think I'll just go with "open" followed by the model.
I've found Italian texts referring to the Aiello-McNish-Ortelli Audi at Le Mans 2000 as a barchetta.
Furthersuggestions are welcome!

#8 Mike Argetsinger

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Posted 14 March 2003 - 04:30

Coincidental to spotting this thread today, I also have just today gotten my hands on a magazine called "Forza" (which I hadn't previously seen a copy of).

The April issue of this magazine has a wonderful article by Michael T. Lynch (TNF's own Cabianca) on the original Barchetta to come to America - in fact the first Ferrari ever to race in this country (s/n 0161). As Michael points out in this beautifully researched (and illustrated) article, this particular car played a central role in much of the early history of post war American road racing.

It is worth tracking down a copy of this magazine just for Michael's article - it's that good!

Christopher - sorry for going slightly off topic without contributing anything worthwhile to the core of the thread - but I thought the coincidence presented just too good an opportunity to pass up to bring this excellent piece of research to the attention of all.

#9 Mike Argetsinger

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Posted 14 March 2003 - 04:33

On rereading my post I realize that I am wrong in saying that 0161 - the subject of Michael's article - was the original Barchetta to come to America. It was the second - but the first to race.

#10 cabianca

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Posted 14 March 2003 - 05:43

Mike,
I'm blushing at your compliments, but I must clarify the situation. The subject car of the article you mention, the Briggs Cunningham car, was a 166SC (016I -- the I is for International). This was what is called a Spyder Corsa. It had the torpedo style body with cycle fenders. This is the body style that was replaced by the later, fully-enveloping "barchetta" bodywork by Touring of Milan. The envelope body was called the Barchetta.

The first Ferrari in America was a Barchetta, imported by Los Angelino Tommy Lee around March, 1949. That car was never raced. The second car into the country was Cunningham's 166 Spyder Corsa. It arrived two months later and had an extensive racing career.

To comment further, I think the French still use the term barquette to cover any open sports racer. I'm not sure if they apply it only to vintage or to cars like the present Audi Le Mans cars.

#11 robert dick

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Posted 14 March 2003 - 13:04

In general “une barquette” describes an open two-seater with enveloping body, meaning that a GP-Bugatti with cycle wings, a Delahaye 135 in its 1936 form, a Ferrari 166 with cycle wings, or a Frazer Nash Le Mans Replica is not part of it. But a Ferrari 166 with the Touring Barchetta body, a Jaguar C, a Maserati Birdcage or a Matra 670 are barquettes. Even the Canam cars are barquettes in this sense.

But within the old Alpine or Matra community, “barquette” is the name for a small two-seater with enveloping body and of petite cylindrée, of small capacity. An OSCA MT4 (with Moretti or Frua body), a Ferrari 500 Mondial, a Lotus Eleven, the two-litre prototypes from Chevron or Lola are barquettes in this sense. A Jaguar C, a Matra 670, a Porsche 908 are not part of it. And the Ferrari 166 with Touring body is not part of it since, from the outset, it was intended to win the general classification. A 1.5-litre Gordini is a barquette in this hard-core sense, a 3-litre Gordini is not.

#12 Yves

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Posted 14 March 2003 - 14:14

And what about "spyder" ? What is precisely for ?

I'm not a linguist but I think this english word is also used for that type of car in french ...

The french "barquette" could be just a translation for the italian "barchetta".

You remember of the original designation of the Le Mans Bugatti as a "tank". In 1927, a Chenard et Walker model got also this nickname.

But this word is no more used today and in french, we say spyder or barquette.

Y.

#13 BRG

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Posted 14 March 2003 - 14:30

Originally posted by Yves
And what about "spyder" ? What is precisely for ?

I'm not a linguist but I think this english word is also used for that type of car in french ...

"Spyder" is no more of an English word than "barchetta" - AFAIK it is only used where a (non-British) manufacturer has employed it - eg. Fiat or Porsche.

By the way, maybe barquette/barchetta (ie small boat) may originate from the boat-bodied cars of the 1920s, where some coachbuilders put highly varnished, clinker-built, wooden bodies, closely resembling that of a rowing or sailing boat, onto car chassises?

#14 Vitesse2

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Posted 14 March 2003 - 14:38

The Dictionary of Automotive Terms doesn't give the original etymology of Spyder, but I've always assumed it was a German coinage:

http://100megsfree4....dics.htm#Spyder

Spyder:
In the early 1900s, a light two-seater car. In the 1950s the word was revived by some Italian manufacturers for an open two seater sports car.

#15 Yves

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Posted 14 March 2003 - 15:58

For barchetta-barquette, just my two cents (this is my own opinion, not an information ;) ) :

The analogy to a boat is perhaps because the very first one didn't have any door, like a boat ?

Y.

#16 D-Type

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Posted 14 March 2003 - 22:19

So, what is a roadster?

I believe it is an American term for a two seater. The original XK 120 was a roadster (or 2 seater sports), this was followed by the coupe and then the drophead coupe (DHC) which had a far more substantial hood than a roadster. I don't think an MG TC was a roadster. An open Porsche was.

I have seen the term "boat tailed sports car" used to describe English sports cars of the vintage , or post-vintage era.

I always associate "Barchetta" with the early 50's Ferraris that followed on from the cycle winged versions. Come to think of it even the 815 was a barchetta.

To answer the original question - there isn't an English word that differentiates between the MG TF and the MGA - they are both 2-seater sports cars. I would use the term "barchatta" style 2-seater if I wanted to be precise and concise.

#17 Ray Bell

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Posted 14 March 2003 - 22:47

Both are, in fact, Roadsters...

That term goes way back, to the twenties AFIK.

#18 Frank S

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Posted 15 March 2003 - 04:33

I think they become "convertibles" when the side glass rolls down and up.

What's a "tourer"?


Frank S

#19 Anorak Man

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Posted 15 March 2003 - 06:34

KIwi and Bathurst regulars will no doubt recall the Flying Briquette.

What it lacked in aerodynamic efficiency it made up for with Swedish 'orses.

They've come a long way since then, thanks to Tom Walkinshaw and friends.

AM

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#20 Ray Bell

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Posted 15 March 2003 - 07:16

A tourer was a 4-seater (or more...) version of a roadster...

#21 Kpy

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Posted 15 March 2003 - 15:50

Originally posted by Yves


You remember of the original designation of the Le Mans Bugatti as a "tank". In 1927, a Chenard et Walker model got also this nickname.



Y.


I've come across the french word "tank" in connection with the work of Gaston Grummer and Guillaume Busson.

Can anyone help me with the meaning of the word in the 1930s, please?

#22 marat

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Posted 15 March 2003 - 16:15

The military tanks appeared in 1916/17.
THe first GP cars wil all envelopping body in Franceappeared in the twenties and were ugly and
looked like war tanks. Tank was equivalent to streamlined (!).
The name survived in Le Mans in the fifties and the Panhard and Panhard Monopole were
the last so called cars (those designed by Riffard).

#23 dbw

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Posted 15 March 2003 - 18:27

believe it or not, a large number of what we think of as "automotive" terms are actually rooted in the vast lexicon of the horse drawn vehicle trade... i recall a rather enlightening aricle by strother macminn on the subject..[can't remember where but if anyone would have known,he would]..we hear a lot of french-rooted words [cabriolet,tonneau,landaulet..etc...i'm sure the brits,italians.[god forbid even the americans..ever hear of the brewster carriage co?]all had terms that have filtered into our automotive terminology..... one that i remember was "dash" or "dashboard" or "dash panel"...while we think of it as a panel full of guages and such,it was originally a hand-wrought iron frame covered with leather at the feet of the driver to keep rocks,dust and horse emissions to mimimum personal contact....i"m sure that somewhere between the romans and the little ferrari there was a "barchetta" with a horse in front of it.