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The Kit Car Manual

(2nd Edition)
Iain Ayre
Out Now

A rising number of enthusiasts are attracted by the prospect of driving a tailor-made car that they have built themselves, and the vast range of designs available ensures that there is a vehicle to suit all tastes, from replica classic sports cars to specialist track-day machines. The Kit Car Manual has been extensively updated to include the latest developments on the scene, including the now common use of motorcycle engines. It is written in a humorous, down-to-earth style, and provides all the information required to choose a suitable kit and complete it successfully to produce a safe, roadworthy car.

This fully updated second edition includes advice on:

  • The pros and cons of various donor-car packages and engines.
  • How to build up a realistic picture of the finances and time required to build a kit.
  • How to turn your garage into a motor engineering workshop.
  • Choosing the right engine, and the basics of rebuilding and tuning.
  • Kit-car chassis basics and suspension types, and overhauling and upgrading braking systems.
  • Working with GRP bodywork, and planning and fitting interior trim.
  • The basics of vehicle electrics, including understanding and using DIY wiring looms.
  • Fuel system, engine management system and cooling system basics.
  • Setting up: suspension, brakes, engine tuning, noise reduction.
  • Paperwork: British SVA and American regulations, and exhaust emissions issues.
  • Appendix of useful contacts: UK and US kit manufacturers, parts suppliers, magazines and kit-car clubs.


Iain Ayre has been living, breathing and writing about kit and performance cars for fifteen years, and has built and run a number of kits, including his own design for a close replica of the Jaguar XK120. He is currently working on two Cobra replica designs based on running gear from a US police car and a Mazda MX-5! He has written for most of the British and US kit magazines over the years.

The information on this page is supplied courtesy of Haynes Publishing, please credit accordingly if you intend to use it. For more information or to request a review copy please contact Spirit PR on 0117 944 1415 or email Haynes PR

Haynes Manuals is the world's leading publisher of illustrated workshop car and motorcycle manuals, as well as producing manuals on a wide range of DIY, leisure and lifestyle subjects. These will continue to include motoring and motorsport related subjects. Sparkford, Yeovil, Somerset BA22 7JJ. Telephone: 01963 440635 Fax: 01963 440001 E-mail: