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Sports car at Brands Hatch 1980?


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#1 jtremlett

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Posted 01 May 2019 - 20:30

This is one of those things that has been niggling away at me for no obvious reason for some while now so I hope someone here can jog my memory.  At one of the Grands Prix held at Brands Hatch - I think 1980 but it might have been 1982 - a road-going sports car was demonstrated.  I believe it was brown and had a Jaguar engine but I cannot remember any more than that.  I would love to know what it was, what the background to it was and what became of it.  Clearly it can never have made it to production.  Internet searching has got me nowhere without recalling the name of it.



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#2 baggish

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Posted 01 May 2019 - 21:08

Rapport Forté - https://www.aronline.../rapport-forte/



#3 jtremlett

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Posted 01 May 2019 - 21:23

That's it!  Brilliant.  Thank you.



#4 baggish

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Posted 01 May 2019 - 22:04

You're welcome! Your question brought back memories of cycling as a young teenager to their showroom on Park Lane to pick up a brochure. I didn't know about the Brands demo, but I did remember from the brochure that the car was brown! :)  They went on to do this one https://www.aronline...l/rapport-ritz/



#5 john aston

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Posted 02 May 2019 - 05:56

I think the car was actually seen a few years earlier - and it was the Bohnna/Stables Diablo , which years later , became the AC 3000ME . I was at every Brands GP between 72 and 86 and the only car I ever remember   being demonstrated was the Diablo , I guess in about 1974 . I can recall it distinctly , finished in period brown .



#6 Tim Murray

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Posted 02 May 2019 - 06:30

I don’t remember the Rapport Forté at Brands either, but the British GP edition of Motoring News (17/7/80) contained an article on the car. Its official launch was at the GP and it did indeed take to the track, ‘demonstrating its unique foldaway metal roof in front of the massed Grand Prix crowds.’

#7 proviz

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Posted 02 May 2019 - 06:32

I think the car was actually seen a few years earlier - and it was the Bohnna/Stables Diablo , which years later , became the AC 3000ME . I was at every Brands GP between 72 and 86 and the only car I ever remember   being demonstrated was the Diablo , I guess in about 1974 . I can recall it distinctly , finished in period brown .

 

I don't think there could be any connection between the mid-engined Diablo of 1972 and front-engined Rapport Forte of 1980...



#8 moffspeed

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Posted 02 May 2019 - 11:51

I think the car was actually seen a few years earlier - and it was the Bohnna/Stables Diablo , which years later , became the AC 3000ME . I was at every Brands GP between 72 and 86 and the only car I ever remember   being demonstrated was the Diablo , I guess in about 1974 . I can recall it distinctly , finished in period brown .

OK not quite a GP but the Rothmans 50000 at Brands in 1972. 

 

Emmo wins the race and is then paraded around the circuit atop the unique JPS-liveried Elan +2 Estate. A nice piece of product placement by ACBC.

 

Which kind of reminds me - when did the lap of honour eventually run out of laps ?



#9 moffspeed

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Posted 02 May 2019 - 11:54

..also if Mark Thatcher did demonstrate the Rapport at Brands in 1980 is there any truth in the rumour that he got lost in the Dingle Dell area and was eventually discovered 5 days later ??



#10 Henri Greuter

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Posted 02 May 2019 - 12:57

Rapport Forté - https://www.aronline.../rapport-forte/



Neat looking car!

#11 Allan Lupton

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Posted 02 May 2019 - 15:41

Which kind of reminds me - when did the lap of honour eventually run out of laps ?

I don't know, but it wasn't before commentator Bunny Tubbs could offer the translation of "tour d'honneur" as "lap of luxury"



#12 Unsorted

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Posted 20 July 2019 - 17:43

Very grateful for a friend telling me about this thread as have recently bought the only Rapport Forte convertible made. It has only done 403 miles, but is in a poor state and requires restoration.

Rapport-then-and-now.jpg

Had been trying to find the car for almost forty years and was beginning to believe it must have been destroyed. Thankfully found that Georg of Donni Classics in Switzerland knew its whereabouts and from this information managed to purchase. 

 

Will create a separate thread, but am over the moon that the OP actually saw the car at Brands Hatch as have not been able to find any photographic proof so far. Thought it never happened despite the program saying it would.

Rapport-British-GP.jpg

 

Rapport-British-GP-advert.jpg

Research is at the foothills of what am sure can be achieved and am trying to find ex Rapport, Panther and Jankel employees who might have known the car, pictures of Park Lane showroom and the elusive Grand Prix pictures. Any help appreciated.


Edited by Unsorted, 20 July 2019 - 17:43.


#13 Vitesse2

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Posted 20 July 2019 - 18:25

There are several adverts in the 'quality' press of the time, offering the car(s) for sale. Initially (1980) from the Park Lane Carriage Company and then (1981) - from the same address, firstly as Rapport Park Lane and then just as Rapport. No prices were ever mentioned in the advertisements - presumably on the grounds that if you had to ask the price you couldn't afford one. However, this article from The Times, Friday, May 29, 1981; pg. 22; Issue 60940, suggests that the asking price was about £40,000 - a little bit north of £150,000 today.

 

Download-Document.jpg



#14 Unsorted

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Posted 20 July 2019 - 18:51

Thanks for above. Have not seen that before.

 

Price list is below.

 

Rapport-Forte-Specification-2-80.png



#15 jtremlett

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Posted 21 July 2019 - 08:04

That's quite impressive to get from not remembering what the car was called to finding I share a mutual acquaintance with the current owner in just a few weeks!

 

I do hope to see it fully restored in due course.  



#16 Unsorted

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Posted 23 July 2019 - 17:40

I don’t remember the Rapport Forté at Brands either, but the British GP edition of Motoring News (17/7/80) contained an article on the car. Its official launch was at the GP and it did indeed take to the track, ‘demonstrating its unique foldaway metal roof in front of the massed Grand Prix crowds.’

 

Thank you for this tip. Found the magazine on eBay and bought. Massive investment of less than a tenner. Copied in below along with a brief mention of Mark Thatcher racing on the day. This is really important, for me, as proves car was there, Mark Thatcher was there and also there was a do at Park Lane at which press were present a few days before. So plenty of threads to investigate.

 

Any ideas who author J.C.T is?

 

Front-cover-Motoring-News-170780-1157-x-

 

Rapport-Forte-Motoring-News-170780-2-111

 

Mark-Thatcher-Sunbeam-Motoring-News-1707



#17 Tim Murray

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Posted 23 July 2019 - 18:44

Any ideas who author J.C.T is?


He was John Teague, who I understand is sadly no longer with us.

#18 Unsorted

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Posted 31 January 2020 - 12:26

The Rapport Forte project continues. Early days, but have already done some very extensive research, with much still to do, and the car and Rapport now have a website. www.rapport-forte.com. It is completely non-commercial. Objective is to make information on the car, company and people who worked there more easily available. It is a truly amazing story. Also, hoping to garner more information.

 

Sections that may be of interest to forum in particular are:

Chris Humberstone designer.

Adverts and press. If you click on any of the pictures, you can download the brochure/picture/article.

 

There is so much more to do on the website to polish it up and a load of information to go on. For example, have found a number of people, including the person that drove the Rapport Forte to both events, that were at the Park Lane launch and the 1980 Brands Hatch GP where car was driven by Mark Thatcher. An explanation for a lack of pictures was that the Red Arrows display occurred at the same time as the car being on track.

 

So there you have it. Enjoy and if anyone knows how to contact Mark Thatcher or has pictures of the car at the Grovewood Suite at Brands GP in 1980 or at Park Lane launch (or even pictures of the Rapport showroom at Park Lane), then I hope you get in touch.


Edited by Unsorted, 31 January 2020 - 12:28.


#19 Unsorted

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Posted 16 April 2020 - 21:01

For the OP, courtesy of Gordon who worked on the Forte. Car is pictured at Brands Hatch F1 GP in 1980. Hope it brings back good memories for you.

 

Rapport-Forte-British-Grand-Prix-1980.jp

 

Usual end to a post. Any pictures of the Forte (that are not already freely available) that you can share is greatly appreciated.



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#20 Unsorted

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Posted 01 July 2020 - 20:00

 
Courtesy of Richard Heseltine and Chris Rees some new pictures have come to light, including (thanks Richard) a picture of Mark Thatcher driving the car at Brands.
 
NB: Goodness know how to get pics to work. Apologies for simple links.

Edited by Unsorted, 01 July 2020 - 20:04.


#21 Tim Murray

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Posted 01 July 2020 - 20:40

NB: Goodness know how to get pics to work. Apologies for simple links.

After uploading any photo to Postimage, the option you need to select is ‘Hotlink for forums’:

Rapport-Forte-Brands-Hatch1980-RH.jpg

Scan-52.jpg

Scan-53.jpg

#22 Unsorted

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Posted 16 September 2022 - 09:54

Bit of an old update on the car. It is now owned by Donni Classics in Switzerland. George, Donni owner, also has the estate Rapport, so it has gone to a good home. Had to sell as got Covid really badly twice and the second time landed me in a coma. All OK now, but needed the cashflow at the time. Such is life! Glad the car touched my life after 40 years.


Edited by Unsorted, 16 September 2022 - 09:54.


#23 arttidesco

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Posted 16 September 2022 - 10:24

Hope you have made a full recovery  :wave: