Car & Classic Dealer

Ronnie Cowan Specialist Cars

1 Green Street Townhill


1997 Marcos Mantis c/w Ford Cobra 4.6 Quad Cam Engine For Sale

£65,000 As stated

Price £65,000As stated
Ad Type For Sale
Category Classic Cars
Make Marcos
Model Mantis
Year 1997
Country United Kingdom
Region Scotland
Status Trade
Ref C926133
This was originally 'Marcos Sportscars' 1997 outrageous V8 'raspberry fliptone' 327 Bhp Motor Show Car.
We purchased this car in 1998 when we became the sole Scottish service/ sales dealer for this highly regarded Wiltshire based Marque.
Marcos had been producing bespoke low volume quality Sportscars in England since the 50's with a fantastic race track record (Lotus / TVR/ Morgan era).
Their historical range of cars still has an enthusiastic following and importantly spare parts are still available.
Latterly the pre Mantis 'LM model' (Rover V8 engined) was raced successfully in the 'Dunlop Marcos Challenge' & the often televised GT series against the likes of TVR
TV motoring presenter and race driver Vicky Butler-Henderson's brother Charlie was the popular and successful race driver for Marcos
Always heralded as reliable and futuristic the fibre glass bodied Mantis was developed using the expensive but brilliant Ford Cobra small block 4. 6 engine (352 Bhp).
1997 it was £46, 883 for a basic example + orc (these were totally bespoke built)these were quoted in the motoring press;- "How a company that builds just 70 cars a year can... design, engineer and produce a car as good as the Mantis is beyond comprehension ...... delivering 0-60 in 4. 3 secs, 0 -100mph in 9. 6 sec and a top speed of 170 mph!"
However the Marcos facory's secret to reliability was due in part to their using well tried and tested stock parts eg mechanicals and electrics from Volvo, Ford or Rover,
unlike their competitors who at times designed and made their own often with catastrophic inherrent faults !
The Marcos factory was a sight to behold as skilled craftsmen worked in very old airy buildings yet turned out some amazing workmanship.
They painted in the equivalent of a rickety home garage yet their paint finish was pretty flawless (in any colour you chose) !
Part built cars were moved around on trolleys between the buildings during assembly and their small sales team headed by Chris Marsh (founder's son & ex 24hr Le Mans driver) was driven by enthusiasm and not numbers.
Marcos relaunched its UK image with the appointment of a dealer network in 1998 and as each dealer had to order at least one car therefore production increased and
the new Mantaray model was launched at the 1999 Earls Court Motor Show - this model never really captured the outrageous lines or drive of the LM or Mantis.
Nb. only 34 American engined Mantis cars were ever produced before Marcos of Westbury went into receivership in the early 2000's after a deal with a Dutch buyer that quickly proved most unfortunate for the Wiltshire based factory.
There were also 5 off £65, 000 GT supercharged versions (0. 5sec quicker 0 - 60mph & 179mph) of which we sold one, some of the trim modifications used on this model I purchased and fitted to our own Mantis eg rear boot and under spoiler.
In 2003 our car was stripped by myself and the steel chassis was treated to reduce corrosion, when rebuilt by me it was upgraded using all new fully adjustable suspension (all new springs and shocks)the interior was completely retrimmed using new cream Scottish leather courtesey of Andrew Muirhead (Glasgow based).

The lower area of the body was painted in deep purple to complement the original factory finish.
We had the car decalled for show purposes but these have long since been removed.
The old rear light clusters were replaced by round Led types (copied by the factory on the final built Marcos T250)

The traditional wooden dashboard was replaced with a more in keeping carbon fibre and stainless steel finish (as in the GT)

All of the suspension rubber joints were replaced with nylon bush race types in order to firm up the handling.
This car benefitted from large floating Alcon race brake discs and alloy calipers on the front.
The rear brakes are Sierra Cosworth, which were replaced with drilled and grooved versions before this year's 2017 MOT ( green brake pads also fitted)
It has a quick release race type steering wheel which can be removed to ease access (if racing )or it is a great security deterrent!
The seats do not adjust but the driver's pedals move electrically (Marcos took this idea from the world of aviation).
Air con and electric windows were standard fit on these cars.
The heater & Air conditioning work great and this car also features a heated windscreen.
I had the idea to fit a Grill mesh behind each of the air intakes - which was later copied on the factory built GT series.
The notoriously stiff cable clutch system was upgraded to a much lighter to operate hydraulic version (the conversion parts kit alone was £1500)
A full dual stainless steel exhaust system was fitted (no cat) which allows this mighty V8 to roar !
A remote operating ICELED spectacular car show light system has now been fitted with all of the interior lighting & under car tubes featuring sequencing coloured leds for show use only.

A talking Thatcham alarm system was added to better protect this unique vehicle at the various car shows we covered - it requests people to stand back if they get too close.

We sold the car ten years ago to an eccentric but fastidiously enthusiastic chap who rarely drove it but continued to upgrade the car specification regardless of expense eg 4 x New custom made 18" multi spoke wheels c/ w new 235. 40 x 18" Good Year Eagle tyres were fitted less than 100mls ago

The car features a huge custom fit multi speaker Hertz Sound system driven by a Pioneer AVH 7500BT Head unit c/ w Motorised 7" Screen c/ w Bluetooth and Moving Map GPS AVIC-U250 option
Also fitted: a front 'Blackvue 490 HD camera/ recorder'
A combination lockable mini storage box is sited (in front of driver's seat)

Our customer religously had the car collected annually by trailer in order that we could service it here & MOT it (regardless of the negligible mileage he covered yearly).
It therefore unusually has a full & detailed Marcos Dealer history

Only 18, 234mls when serviced & MOT'd until August 2021

Whilst he has enjoyed his ownership of this car (often referred to as " his baby") he has decided that it is now time to allow someone else to benefit from possibly using it !
Having known the car and cared for it so long I purchased it back in order to either keep as an investment or sell.

This car is a 'one off' and is in exceptional condition in every respect - It is outrageous, loud, radical, reliable and turns heads everywhere it goes !

If you dare to be different and want the best available
£££ It is now open to serious offers £££

** all photographs are a current representation of the car and are the sole intellectual property of Ronnie Cowan Specialist Cars **
Car and Classic logo Compare insurance quotes Get a quote
Login to edit this advert
Similar Adverts

reducing my collection. 1993 Mantara Spider in Avus Blue - chassis number 4. Only 12500 miles from new - body off resto six years ago , been in a collection since. Chassis was blasted - Zinc etch primed and two coats gloss black. Polybushed suspension with adjustable dampers - rear lamps upgraded at the rebuild. much ...

West Midlands



Jem Marsh and Frank Costin started their illustrious car building careers in the unlikely town of Dolgellau in North Wales. The commercial success of their fashionably named, if not styled, Marcos Xylon in 750 Motor Club races prompted the move to more centrally based facilities in Bradford-on-Avon. At much the same ...


JUST REDUCED TO £3400. Superb project Mini Marcos - transport can be arranged at cost within mainland U.K. by local specialist. I bought this a few years ago now to restore but I have collected far too many great retirement projects but sadly I’ll have to sell this and most of the others, which is such a shame. And ...


For sale is my marcos 1600gt wooden chassis car owned for the last 6 years , in that time the car has received a full body ,trim and sympathetic mechanical restoration . with only 3 owners from new this car is extremely genuine and original, supplied new in its current colour and trim combination, the first owner ...


A very rare English sportscar - Certainly a head-turner In 1992, the Marcos Mantara was introduced as a factory-made model – a further extension of the original GT styling but on steroids. Powered by Rover V8 3.9 EFI engine. The Mantara ended up campaigning in GT racing, with the ultimate version the LM600 The ...


My 3rd Marcos is for sale.. 1968 wooden chassis GT. 45000 miles 1600 Ford cross flow original build file from MHS. Original engine and gearbox. This car was Fully restored in 2019 and recently inspected with remaining work done by marcos specialist Redline sportcars. 1600 Ford crossflow. Uprated Cam and new ...


3 Litre Marcos Volvo GT in Metallic Purple with Black Interior. Reluctantly for sale. Owned by myself as the 2nd owner for over 45 years!!! Starting with a new Zinc Plated, Powder Coated, Waxoyled chassis, it has been restored over a 10 year period. Specification: Integral full Roll Cage Fully rebuilt engine with ...


1999 Marcos Mantaray V8! Marcos Engineering was a British sports car manufacturer; the name derives from the surnames of founders Jem Marsh and Frank Costin. Marcos was founded in Dolgellau, North Wales, in 1959, by Speedex cars Jem Marsh with aerodynamicist Frank Costin. Costin had earlier worked on the De Havilland ...

South Africa

Built by Marcos and displayed at the 1996 motor show. 24,000 miles later and the car is still like new. Electric blue and tan leather interior, electric adjustable peddles, wing mirrors and windows plus air-conditioning. Previous owners have cared and maintained the car to a very high standard throughout it's life, one ...


stage 3 kit first registration 2008. 3.5 v.8 with edelbrock performer manifold/carb. John eales sump, real steel clutch, MHS raising kit and suspension. Laser aligned. 5 original Meteor rims with yokohamas and image billets with handed toyos for best. Drive up ramps for servicing etc included. One registered owner. MOT ...


This 1997 Marcos Mantis, powered by a 4.6L Quad Cam Ford V8, shows just 47000 miles on the tachometer. Prior to being taken off the road in 2013 and being stored outside, a new 5 speed gearbox and clutch were fitted. The cars runs and drives, however requires substantial chassis work and a braking system overhaul before ...


Marcos rebuilt by marque specialists to a high standard Plywood chassis correctly repaired, fibreglass and paint completed to a high quality, and still in excellent finish. Rebuilt from the ground up and nicely detailed. The restoration aimed to complete the car as close to the specification as it left the Wiltshire ...


A fine example of the classic Marcos GT in great condition, showing 95000 miles and believed to have only 3 owners from new. The Volvo 3 litre power plant, fitted with twin Stromberg carbs, sits snuggly within the space frame chassis and is mated to a 4 speed manual gearbox. This historic Marcos encapsulates those early ...