Marcos were founded in 1959 by Frank Costin and Gem Marsh (MARsh and COStin), and manufactured kit, racing and production cars primarily for the UK market.
Frank Costin was an aircraft engineer who worked on the wooden framed De Havilland Mosquito bomber. Following the war his brother, Mike Costin (who later founded Cosworth), started work at Lotus, and he asked Frank to join the team to bring his aerodynamic talents. Frank used his engineering skill to design cars for Lotus, Maserati and Lister, before deciding to create his own lightweight wooden chassis, setting up Marcos with his business partner Gem Marsh.
Like rivals TVR, Marcos sourced parts from volume manufacturers such as Ford and Triumph, and fitted these to their own glass-fibre bodywork. As is always the way with small British sports car builders, they faced several financial problems during their history, finally ceasing to produce in 2007.
Marcos’ glory days came in the late 1990s when their hugely powerful sports cars were raced all over the world. Still loosely based on the original 1960s design, the cars had swelled and distorted almost beyond recognition, and were perhaps some of the more aesthetically challenged sports cars on the market.
Not Harry’s though – his 1600GT is true to the original (well, apart from the third brake light at the rear), being simple, pretty and light. Which are not any of the characteristics TLCB Elves look for in a vehicle. Luckily Harry’s got that covered and has built a striped, be-winged and huge engined version just for them. He even put a box of ‘Smarties’ in the back, which the Elves immediately ate and are now regretting.*
* ‘Shitting bricks’ has never been so literal.