The Good Oil: When Stirling drove a Suzuki
Search Driven for Suzuki for sale
What do small, sporty Suzukis and British racing legend Stirling Moss have in common? More than you’d think.
In 1968, Suzuki decided to promote the performance capabilities of the Fronte 360 SS (that’s 360cc, people) by undertaking an average-speed challenge on the Autostrada del Sol from Milan to Rome. Two drivers were employed: Moss and Mitsuo Ito, a Suzuki motorcycle racer who had won the Isle of Man TT 50cc class in 1963.
The pair drove the entire 744km route at an average speed of 121km/h in the 18kW Frontes, creating headline news.
The Fronte was a revolutionary model for Suzuki: its first rear-engined, rear-drive model and the first with the “coke bottle line” styling that later became synonymous with the Japanese brand.
Despite being tiny and weighing just 420kg, Suzuki claimed the Fronte could serve as a four-seat family car. A warmed-up one in SS form, although not strictly a hot hatch… because it didn’t have a hatchback.
This year marks the 100th anniversary of the Japanese brand – but sadly, it’s also the year in which Stirling Moss passed away, aged 90. But what a time he must have had in 1968.
Nico’s new hypercar
Former Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula 1 driver and 2016 World Champion Nico Rosberg will be one of 150 owners of Rimac’s new C_Two pure-electric hypercar.
A follow-on from the Concept One prototype famously crashed by Grand Tour presenter Richard Hammond in 2017, the C_Two is claimed to be a major advance in performance and automated driver assistance.
Rimac says the car will be capable of 0-161km/h (100mph) in 4.3 seconds and have a top speed of 415km/h.
The platform is shared with the Pininfarina Battista hypercar (Pininfarina is a partner of the company, along with Aston Martin and Koenigsegg).
The first C_Two models won’t be delivered until 2021. Rosberg has just visited Rimac headquarters in Croatia to personalise his vehicle and drive an advanced prototype.
Following his retirement from F1, Rosberg has become a “sustainability entrepreneur”, investing in more than 20 mobility startup companies. Last he founded the Greentech Fetsival, a global platform for “sustainable innovation and lifestyle”.