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MikeT

1906 Züst - New York to Paris 1908

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This car was shown to the public for the first time today after its owners from the Ladysmith BC area finally finished the basic restoration.Extensive research shows that this car is indeed the one that finished in third place in the famous 1908 race from New York to Paris (the hard way - Alaska/Russia/Mongolia/China/Europe). It was found years ago in Dawson City YT and brought down to BC in the 1960s.It will be on display at the Vancouver Auto show starting next weekend and will follow the North American leg of the 2008 New York to Paris rally.It's powered by a monsterous 4 cylinder T-head engine (upside down valves that have ports off to the side of the combustion chamber), has a rear transaxle and chain drive, and is rated at 25 continuous horsepower, peaking at 45.

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You got it! The ancestor of the modern extruded aluminium traction planks.....

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off the top of your head, would you happen to know how many days it took to complete the journey? are all the roads still passable today? that would really be one adventure to repeat. :D:D:D

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New York: February 10 --> September 16th: ParisMany of the "roads" were railway lines, where the car drove over the sleepers (railway ties)....many river crossings were improvised to say the least! I wonder if a Land Rover or even a Unimog could make it today!

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OOps, I loaded two of the same photo yesterday....here is another, a rear shot!

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Awesome restoration of a piece of history.I guess they would have used some sort of hand-powered winch to get it through the really dicey spots.

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No, they paid peasants, farmers and railway coolies to do that for them, according to the book on the race that I bought!

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I asked for them to lift the hood but the Italian flag (the Züst was an Italian marque from Milano) had just been painted the night before so the paint hadn't cured yet. I'll try at the Vancouver Auto Show, if I get there next weekend.The engine is a ~10 litre 4 cylinder unit, massive stroke and bore, separate head for each cylinder, typical for the day.

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Grand Prix cars in that era, 100 years ago, had 14-15 L 4 cylinder engines.Peugeot revolutionised GP racing with their "tiny" 7.6 Litre DOHC 4 valve per cylinder hemi 4 cylinder engine, in 1912!

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BTW, that Peugeot engine would rev to 2400 RPM, an unheard of engine speed in those days!

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Very interesting posts guys. The turn of century cars were wonderful flame breathing giants. We are "Early Engine" freaks both ICE and steam. Love reading this stuff. :) A2Jack.

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So I guess this could be considered one of the world's first SUV's. I wouldn't have thought that the Italians were so inclined----but at least they knew when to quit and build something more sensible. ;)

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Good find Mike. I have toured with these gentlemen and saw this car at their shop about a year and a half ago. They actually are very active Model T Ford people and built/resored a Model T Speedster for a friend of mine. The brothers really are an interesting couple of guys and their place is full of some really unique things. If ever given the opportunity to visit their place, jump at the chance.The Zust was reportedly found in Alaska with trees growing through it and was brought to Vancouver. The car was traded to to the guys on the Island and there began the restoration. When I saw it they had just received some gears they had made for the trans. The engine was together and they were in contact with somebody in Italy about fabricating some tubes for the radiator. Some of the restoration stories of this car are as interesting as stories of the original race.

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I got him and his wife to sign the book about the race and the car's restoration/authentication process. They said the car was found in the Yukon, not Alaska! Interesting vehicle, it still needs a bit of fettling but it's well on its way to being a fine historical artifact!

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I think you are right now that you mention the Yukon. It has been awhile since I talked to them and I do have a poor memory these days. I'm really glad that they have it completed enough to be on display.

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