This is a car I built, starting with a basic frame and body made for me by the Rotus company in Maryland. It is inspired by a mid '60s Lotus Seven America, but differs dramatically in almost every aspect.The goal was a minimalist car with outstanding handling and a high power to weight ratio.

The project started in earnest in September of 1990 when my 1963 Buick convertable broke a ball joint on a twisty mountain road and tried to throw me off a cliff. That car was towed back to my garage where the engine was pulled as the start to Alumin8.

The completed car was first rolled out of the garage in June of 1993 and has been driven ever since, with a few tweaks and modifications over the years, including replacement of a blown motor. It is a blast to drive, and a capable track day performer.



  • Ted Panofsky, Woodside, CA
  • 1963 Buick 215 cubic inch (3.5 liter) aluminum block V8
  • 11:1 compression pistons
  • Total Seal gapless piston rings
  • Ported and polished aluminum heads, 3-angle valve job, 105 pound valve springs
  • 3/4 race cam with hydraulic lifters
  • Fully baffled oil pan, powder coated
  • Remote oil filter and oil cooler
  • Offenhauser aluminum intake manifold, ported and polished
  • Holley 390 cfm carburetor with Carburetor Shop jet plates
  • Custom exhaust headers by Sanderson with Supertrap baffles
  • Offenhauser valve covers
  • MSD 6AL ignition system, Mallory electronic trigger, MSD plug wires
  • Tilton light weight racing starter
  • Custom 4 row aluminum cross flow radiato
  • Frame and basic body by Rotus, Fredricksburg, MD
  • Steel powder coated chassis
  • Stressed aluminum skin
  • Carrera coil-over adjustable shocks
Rear axle:
  • 1979 Toyota Supra solid axle, 3.90:1 ratio
  • Disk brakes with Porterfield road race pads
  • 4-link suspension with panhard rod
Front Suspension:
  • 1975 Toyota Celica uprights, spindles, and disk brakes with Porterfield road race pads.
  • 1979 Toyota Supra rack and pinion steering, shortened
  • Double A arm front suspension with upper rocker
  • Inboard Carrera adjustable coil-over shocks
Wheels and Tires:
  • Wheels by Panasport, 6 X 15 front, 7 X 15 rear
  • Yokohama A-032R road racing tires, 205/50-15 front, 225/50-15 rear
Instruments and Interior:
  • VDO instruments
  • Cherry veneer dashboard and details
  • Leather shift boot and parking brake boot
  • Corbeau seats
  • Team Tech 6-point (driver) and Simpson 4-point (passenger) harnesses
  • Momo leather wrapped steering wheel and Shift Knob
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