LocalMatters       

Daily driver turns heads

Posted at 10:00am Tuesday 27 Apr, 2021

Tony Clarke needs more room in his garage.
Tony Clarke needs more room in his garage.

The V6 Camaro engine.
The V6 Camaro engine.

The kit was designed by American engineer Dennis Brunton. It is equivalent  to the Kiwi Fraser Clubman cars.
The kit was designed by American engineer Dennis Brunton. It is equivalent  to the Kiwi Fraser  Clubman cars.

There’s room for two in the Brunton Stalker.
There's room for two in the Brunton Stalker.

Some hobbyists make models while others collect stamps, but Warkworth's Tony Clarke and his Dad build performance race cars.

Currently in Tony's garage is the Brunton Stalker kit car, imported from the United States.

It has a V6, 3.4 litre engine that was taken from a 1990s Camaro and puts out 142 horsepower. The gearbox and diff were from an S10 Chevrolet pickup truck.

Its top speed is 180km/h and it can travel a quarter mile (0.4km) in 13.2 seconds. It weighs 590 kilograms.

It doesn't have accoutrements like ABS, power steering or even windows.

However, it does have a torsen limited slip differential, which ensures that it is able to quickly correct if it begins to skid out.

It has dashboard switches to engage the ignition and to apply different strength levels of brakes.

The steering wheel can be easily removed to allow drivers with a large girth to get seated before reattaching it.

The Stalker was built by Tony's father in the United States. He was a woodwork technician for a nuclear power plant and passed the car on to Tony when he moved to the Cayman Islands.

“Driving it in the Caymans would have been like driving around on Rangitoto,” Tony says.

The car has participated in 35 racing events in its lifetime and was Tony's daily drive for a time but it became impractical for taking the kids to school.

Tony says, being a left-hand drive, it is difficult to overtake on the road, as the driver has to pull all the way out into the centre to see what is ahead of him or her.

“But it's great on a speedway track, where you can overtake on the left.”

Tony is trying to make room in his garage for a new project and has listed the Stalker for $24,995 on Trademe.

“You can work on it with a basic tool kit,” he says.

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