Introduced at the 1967 Racing Car Show the prototype Piper GT, styled by Tony Hilder, was based around a tubular backbone spaceframe chassis, with fibreglass bodywork. This innovative sports racer was sold as a chassis / body unit to which Austin-Healey Sprite, Hillman Imp or Ford running gear could be fitted. A former customer turned business partner, Brian Sherwood convinced Piper to produce a fully trimmed road-going version of the GT. Christened the GTT, the resultant machine was notably lightweight and aerodynamic, extracting supercar performance from the most mundane of mechanical components. Whilst the Piper factory produced some fully-built cars in-house, much of production was supplied for self-build.
Chassis No: K 2970 started out in 1968 as a road car, registered as XHV 713 G. At some point it was converted into a competition car and fitted with a Lotus Twin Cam unit, mainly being used in hillclimb events. By 1971 it was re-registered RUM 462 J, however this has since lapsed although the vendor has the old V5 to support this. In 1997 a full body-off chassis rebuild was carried out by Piper Developments (This work is documented in the car’s history file). The rebuilt car was acquired by the vendor in 2003 and raced with Top Hat, CSCC and the HSCC at the Brands Hatch Superprix. In the search for ever-more performance, the vendor fitted a potent BDA power unit during 2007. The same unit was refreshed in 2009 and has zero miles on it since the work was carried out.
Pipers carry a certain cache in historic racing circles – everyone knows that they are capable of being very quick and their comparative rarity finds favour with organisers of historic events – opening the doors to high-end race meetings. This example has been in the hands of a dedicated Piper marque devotee and has been well maintained for racing. Open to many historic series run by established Clubs such as Masters Historic Racing, Masters Top Hat, Classic Sports Car Club, the Heritage Series and many more such organisations, this well developed sports racing GT should be very busy in the 2010 historic race season, both in the U.K and in Europe!