Fast Fun Days

 Source: Courier Mail Saturday April 4, 1998

By Bruce McMahon

PRB Clubman ... fast motoring for the enthusiast.

A PRB Clubman is a feisty little machine. Pin-sharp handling, amazing acceleration, two snug seats and little in the way of weather protection. The closest thing to an open-wheeler that's allowed on Australian roads.

Tipping the scales at 530kg (including tonneau cover and folding hood) this is an enthusiastic sprinter with a power-to-weight ratio of 5.8 kilograms a kilowatt.

Manufactured in Australia, beautifully finished and engineered, the PRB Clubman is a favourite among motor-sport enthusiasts and those who simply appreciate a roadster that can run the pipes off a number of more fancied marques.

It is built by Peter Bladwell and numbers are restricted by Australian volume quotas.

The waiting list is about two years but there is now a quicker, cheaper way of sliding in behind the Sparco steering wheel and firing up the 1600cc Toyota engine.

The Mount Coot-tha Rotary Club has secured one of these $39,244 PRBs-finished in British racing green and silver-for a very special raffle. Only 2000 tickets at $50 each will be sold before June 28 with funds raised going to the Mater ChildrenRs Hospital.

The tickets should be running out almost as quickly as the Clubman- which accelerates to 100kph in 4.9 seconds and sprints all the way through to 190kph.

The Clubman is built around a multi-tubular space frame filled with aluminium frames and aluminium honeycomb sandwich panels on the floor, back pan and sides of the frame for strength and lightness.

The nose-cone over the 20-valve engine is fibreglass and the fuel tank sits behind the two occupants.

It is quite a snug fit behind the wheel.

Drivers need to be slim of hip and not too long in the leg but there is that feeling of man and machine working together, thinking together and quickly.

Simple instrumentation - big analogue tachometer and digital readout for speed, fuel and the rest-leaves a driver to concentrate on the joys of motoring.

The Clubman responds to steering wheel and throttle input with precision and improves with speed.

The motor is encouraging and leaves a full-blooded exhaust note.

The PRB package quickly brings a smile to the face and is worth a $50 bet for one of the best automotive toys on the road.

Those in Brisbane who need to try the Clubman for size can see it most week days between 10am and 4pm at the new BP truckstop in Boundary Road at Archerfield.

There have been a few tickets sold that way, including truckers around the country.

Otherwise phone (07) 3278 0466.

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