On the Diva stand at the Olympia (Racing Car Show, January 1965), alongside the current production Diva GT, was a new version using a rear-mounted Imp engine - a first attempt by a really succesful racing marque at extracting the Rootes baby's full potential. This one is lower than the original Diva and, judging by other people's Imps, it should show even the older Divas the way back to the paddock, given time.
One of the lesser known cars in the list of Imp powered machines.
It was manufactured in 1965 and was named Diva Demon. The car was exhibited for the first time at the Racing Car Show in January 1965. The engine was turned around to lie amidships. The prototype version had aluminium panels, but proposed production examples were to be fitted with a glass fibre body.
The manufacturers of this machine were named Diva Cars ltd. of 94 Camberwell Road, South London.
The catalogue and guide to the 6th annual Racing-Car Show lists Diva Cars as exhibitor at Stand No. 62
They had two cars there, one brand new, the other well known. The new one was the Diva Demon, a development of the Diva G.T., which had been very succesful in previous seasons. The Demon uses a forward facing Hillman Imp engine, driving the rear wheels, in a semi-monocoque chassis with glassfibre bodywork. The price is £1,550 in road trim and with a stage 2 converted engine.
With 53 first places, 37 second and 15 thirds, the Diva G.T. has become very popular. Ford engines in many stages of tune are available.
The stand also has displays of NGK sparking plugs and tuning equipment.
Tunex Conversions Ltd., 94 Camberwell Road, London, S.E.5. (Rodney 7914)
Location: in West Hall, Olympia, London
Date: January 22nd - 30th 1965
Org.: British Racing & Sports Car Club
c/o Heron Plastics Ltd., Calvert Road, Greenwich, SE15
Heron Plastics are showing the exciting 1965 DIVA G.T. car. This car has established itself on the circuits around the country. It claims to be the only 1000 c.c. G.T. car with all round I.F.S. ajustable dampers, built-in crash hoop and many other features. Originally designed as a test bed for Tunex Conversions Ltd.
The road version of this car has single DCOE carburettor, Dunlop C.41 tyres, speedometer and place of rev. counter and sells at £940. Full details of both cars may be obtained at the Stand.
Also exhibited is a fuel injection unit for the above car, and an item of particular interest is a new Prototype Imp engined G.T. car intended for road use and long distance racing.
The success of the DIVA in various events makes impressive reading - up to September 1964: 53 first places, 37 second places and 15 third places.
Ford engines are usually used in the DIVA, with the 1,000 c.c., 1,100 c.c., 1,500 c.c. capacities, and the body is tailor -made to the individual purchaser.
The Valkyr was shown at the same show, a coupé. Or maybe it was the same car ?? It also had the engine mid-mounted in a space-frame chassis. Despite it's appearance, it was intended for road use.
Rootes seemed interested in producing, but Diva decided not to use the Imp engine after all. Another source states nothing came of it, the Valkyr remained just a prototype.
Another Valkyr was shown at the 1967 Racing Car Show with a 180 mph, 2.7 liter Coventry Climax engine.
On OldStox.com this photo is shown (larger than here) and they say:
Second one, which I don't know anything about, is a prototype Diva Valkyr sports car, rear-engined, aluminium-bodied, and using the then-popular alloy Hillman Imp motor. Photo taken same time as the Summers one. Additional facts / corrections are welcome. Jack Reynolds has identified Mike Aired on the left, and Mike Walton in overalls, and pointed out that a Valkyr was also built, experimentally, with a honking great Coventry Climax 2.7 litre (4-cyl) motor from a Gurney-Weslake F1 car.
The marque Diva only existed for a few years. The number of cars of this name is not overpowering.
In 1962 Don Sim came to work for Tunex Conversions in London. He designed a small sportscar for them. It was called the Diva GT and had a Ford engine. It had independent suspension for all wheels and disc brakes. It was also available as a kit. 65 were made from 1962 to '68.
One Diva GT won its class at the 1964 Nürburgring. In 1965 the firm was renamed: Diva Cars Ltd.
Team Diva won over 150 races (!) during 1964-1966. In 1967 they were going to run 2 Divas in the Group 4 up-to-1,150cc class. Drivers would include John Bloomfield, Doug Mockford and Vic Elford.
GT 10F Coupe, 1966, 2 pages, PB. DM 80
Valkyr GT, 1967, 1 page, PB. DM 60
letter / from Keith Hext of London. - Impressions 8, 2. - p. 4
He send a photocopy along, which was too hazy for the editor to use - what was on it ???
|The Imp Site
The small Diva Prototype
of John Delmar-Morgan and Mike Walton
1966, 1000 km Nürburgring
6 September 1964 - Nürburgring (D): Round 7, International Championship for Manufacturers
Peter Brayshaw/Tim Lalonde drove a Diva GT (class: Prototype GT 1000; car# 116), entered by Diva at the Nurbürgring in 1964, Sep. 6. They did not finish.
Neither did John Bloomfield/Donald Sim finish, driving in another Diva GT (car# 127, also entered by Diva) in class Prototype GT 1300.