Rare Rides: A 1965 Brasinca Uirapuru - Say What?
Today’s Rare Ride is a very limited production coupe from Brazil that appears to be very derivative in its styling. But what if that’s not the case at all?
Brasinca was a Brazilian truck manufacturer in the 1960s, building heavy duty trucks for the hauling of lumber or delivery of gasoline. It also made parts used by other companies. Still, the company wanted more and hoped to show the people of Brazil it was capable of making a luxury car, as well. Enter Uirapuru, sort of.
The original name for this model was the much more American-sounding 4200 GT, after the 4.2-liter Chevrolet inline-six truck engine that resided under its long hood. Matched to either a three- or four-speed manual, the rear-wheel drive coupe debuted circa 1964. Production began that same year after a quick name change to Uirapuru. As the model’s production was of the British shed style, things proceeded very slowly.
The Uirapuru’s hand-built body was made of steel. Underneath lay a unique frame not shared with any other car. Determined to get it right, Brasinca defined the shape of the coupe after testing it in a wind tunnel – a first for a Brazilian manufacturer.
Along the way, different versions of the Uirapuru sprung up, including an S model that bumped the original 155 horsepower to 163 via revised valves, and a GTS with a heady 170 horsepower. Zero to 60 times for the sportier version clocked in at a blistering 10.4 seconds.
Between 1964 and 1966, Brasinca produced 74 Uirapuru coupes, plus three convertible examples. It was all finished after 1966, when the company cited high costs and shut down production of their only coupe. Reviewing the photos, the resemblance to the Jensen Interceptor is an uncanny one, but the final year of Uirapuru production was indeed the first for the Interceptor. Interesting, isn’t it?
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My first thought was the front end looks like a BMW Neue Klasse, but then I saw the rear hatch and immediately flashed back to Black Belt Jones and his Jensen Intercepter. Beautifully eccentric.
Love the triple S.U. carbys...