Keeping Up with the Smiths

  • story by David M. Brown
  • posted on 09/2009
  • posted in: Great Garages

Barry and Lynn Smith of Desert Mountain have a great garage and great stories for all of their classic vehicles. Here are Barry’s accounts:

Creative Workshop Sport Speciale, 2007 — “We worked with Jason Wenig and his team of super craftsman at Creative Workshop, Dania Beach, Fla. We turned a dream into reality after almost two years and 7,000 man-hours. The concept was to build a car from scratch that honored the great Italian racers from the late ‘50s/early ‘60s and to marry that look and sound with modern, high-tech racing performance underneath.

“The Speciale is original and the only one in the world. It has a birdcage chassis, hand-formed Superleggera-style aluminum body with Vegila instruments, Marchal lighting, and Magneti Marelli switches and a vintage Nardi steering wheel. An Italian wheel maker used the original Borrani molds to create the new set of 16-inch wire wheels.

Stopping, steering and accelerating are cutting edge: Brembo front and Wilwood rear brakes, an Auburn limited-slip differential and a custom Hilborn-style fuel-injection system. Power comes from a six-liter BMW V-12 modified to 450 hp and 480 lb-ft of torque by the factory and Korman Autoworks. Weighing only 2,300 pounds, the Speciale has blazing speed: 0-60 mph in 3.3 seconds with a top end of 251 mph.

“The performance is absolutely unbelievable. It’s a true thrill to drive, and the view from the cockpit over those sloped front fenders is quite an award. Today, the Speciale has just over 3,000 miles including the ‘08 Texas 1000 Rally.”

‘96 Lamborghini Diablo VT Roadster — “Only 308 Diablo VT Roadsters were produced for worldwide distribution (December ‘95 through ‘99), making it one of the rarest and most desirable Supercars ever built. It was the first road car to exceed 200 mph and is powered by a 5.7-liter, mid-engine, fuel-injected V-12 producing 492 hp with a five-speed gearbox. And of course, the VT Roadster is a four-wheel-drive car.

“The exterior is metallic blue, and the interior has snow-corn beige skins and features a carbon fiber package. Other factory options include air-conditioning, air spoiler, high-performance exhaust, backup camera and xenon headlights. The car is completely original except for two modifications: a vastly improved sound system by Varner and Myra wheels and Pirelli tires. The original cost for the car in ‘99 exceeded $235,000. Today, the roadster has just over 17,000 miles.

“A showcase of Italian design, we never tire of just looking at this vehicle. Just a great car to drive: wonderful sound and fantastic acceleration especially for a large vehicle. Plus, with the air-conditioning and removable top, you can drive it year round. And, it has two different looks with the removable top that sits on the rear deck for cool weather driving.”

1955 550 Porsche Spyder (Replica) – “Simply, a great fun car to drive with superb handling. The car is finished in an eye-popping stark white with cobalt blue stripes on the rear fenders. It is powered by a 2.3 liter flat four with twin Weber 44S, jet-coated magna fold headers and exhaust and a CB high-performance four-speed transmission.

“Output is 160 hp in a car that weighs less than 1,300 lbs. The car is very quick and without doubt outperforms the original.

“Manufactured by Vintage, the Spyder has a race-car-style full tube frame. Handling is direct and tenacious with adjustable coil-over shocks at all four corners complemented by four-wheel disc brakes and two-piece aluminum racing wheels fitted with Dunlop sports tires. The car is now four years old and has just over 3,200 miles.

It’s like driving a very serious go-cart. Great fun, very low maintenance. On one of his trips to Arizona, Jason Wenig of Creative Workshop was giving me a hard time about owning a replica — that is, until he drove it. Then, he wanted to take it home to Florida.”

2009 Porsche 911 Carrera 4S — “The new addition, a birthday present for Lynn, is ruby-red metallic on cocoa leather interior. The 3.8-liter six cylinder outputs 385 horsepower and 310 foot pounds of torque, delivering a 0–60 time in 3.8 seconds and a top end of 186 mph. It’s an all-wheel-drive with a 6-speed manual and 19-inch Turbo Wheels. Inside are a Bose high-end sound package and a Bluetooth phone interface and other options. Even the air-conditioning slats are done in leather. A stunning, high-performance machine.”