RICHARD OAKES - A ONE MAN BRAND
Everyone who has followed the last three decades of British Car design, cannot fail to recognize the name of Richard Oakes. Richard, the self effacing genius behind, amongst many others, the Nova, the Midas, the Pegasus (Paradine) the GTM Libra, and the Blackjack Avion, brings a wealth of knowledge and a steely focus to the business of car design and development.
It's no accident that he has been associated with so many landmark designs and is a consultant to manufacturers large and small. He has an unusually deep comprehension of the many components that must come together to deliver a vehicle that is as pleasing to drive, as it is to look at. His vision is unique, his solutions original; he is truly a designer, not merely a stylist.
AN ENVIABLE TRACK RECORD
It's a rare designer whose name is indelibly associated with a classic, rarer still are those who have been associated with a stream of classics. Richard's relentless pursuit of excellence has delivered designs such as the Nova, the Pegasus, the Midas, the Libra and the Avion.
The Nova, was hailed in its time by writers on both sides of the Atlantic as one of the most beautiful cars in the world. It was an astounding debut and an early encounter with the potential of VW's robust power train.
The Midas with its clever fiberglass monocoque was the only complete car ever presented as a RCA degree show project. The light and focused Libra is held by many to be the car the Elise ought to have been.
The Avion trike is cherished by its owners, many of whom are engineers themselves. They've appreciated the completeness of the kits, the engineering that has simplified the build process, and the pleasing characteristics of the finished car.
The Zero's antecedents are most evident in the Avion, but pleasing and sophisticated style and a fulfilling driving experience are the hallmarks of all Oakes designs.
Richard's philosophy can be succinctly expressed. Beyond simply looking good, a successful kit car must deliver driving pleasure and pride of ownership. Its construction should be straightforward and its performance useable. Simple enough to outline, these objectives can only be delivered from extensive knowledge and unswerving dedication to an ideal. In this Richard Oakes has never wavered.
Copy written by Jim Mitchell.