Time was, automotive magazines used to do stuff that was awesome. This IMSA Pinto is evidence of that. Car and Driver built this car in 1974 to illustrate that racing on a big scale for a modest budget was possible.The car grabbed the pole position in half the races it entered that season and won outright at its second race at Charlotte. Surely more powerful than the emissions- and oil-crisis choked street Pintos of the day, this race car is better suited to road courses than hugging the wall at Talladega, but it's likely loads of fun either way.
Although the car itself is built from a ’72 Pinto, the team chose to use the larger 2.3-liter I-4 introduced in 1974, and had its block modified by Doug Fraser Racing Engines. A number of other changes, including a Corvette radiator, full roll cage, tall 4.10:1 and 4.30:1 rear axle ratios, and brakes and a steering box cribbed from a ’74 Pinto, were all part of the recipe.
Overall, the experiment was a success -- the Pinto won its second race (at Charlotte), and managed to garner two pole positions in the four races it was entered in. Although it was relatively underpowered, the car’s forte was handling, and it could more than hold its own on tight road courses.
The car had been sold off by Car and Driver back in 1974, and was subsequently restored by Don Sherman, now of Automobile Magazine, but a C/D alum, in 2005. Sherman had his nostalgic fun with the car before selling it to Fox Motorsports. Fox has added some more beans to the Pinto's powerplant, and now has it up for sale on eBay Motors. You've got seven days to scrape some dough together and go vintage racing in the car that started Pat Bedard's respectable – if short – racing career.