Saturday, March 10, 2012



The company Matra became famous in the 50-60s. She became one of the leading manufacturers of aerospace equipment and weapons. Nevertheless, the company decided to start production of small quantities of sports cars and participate in competitions. Acquiring firm in 1964 Rene Bonnet ("Rene Bonnet"), Matra soon introduced the single race cars, have been successful mainly in the Formula 1 racing under the control of Jackie Stewart (Jackie Stewart). Later, the company developed its own engine for the VI2 sports cars and a few that have received recognition, racing models.

Unusual sports model Bagheera had three front seats. It was produced in 8 years
The first years the company has used the power company Matra Bonnet in Champigny-sur-Marne, but then built a new plant in Romorantene, central France, and began production of a new sports coupe "M530A" with the engine Ford. The best thing we can say about it - instant recognizability. Soon, the company recognized the need for more speed and the original car, and to establish good and lasting relationships with major manufacturers in the name of reducing production costs.

In 1964 the firm acquired the Matra Bonnet, the vehicle manufacturer Djet. This is one of the most recent instances of
In the early 70s. Matra company has entered into an alliance with Chrysler-SIMCA, which acquired most of its shares. The first result was a model of cooperation Bagheera ("Bagheera") with a transverse engine within the wheelbase. For this three-seat coupe components and assemblies used car SIMCA 1100. They sold the car, and successfully, under the emblem of the Matra-Simca, until the company moved on to develop a model of Rancho ("Ranch") station wagon. The car looked like a four-wheel drive, but in fact he had only to drive the front wheels.
In 1978, when Chrysler sold all of its European office of French firm Peugeot ("Peugeot"), Matra-SIMCA was replaced by a partner. Soon the body was gone SIMCA models emblem of the American group to make room for a revived brand Talbot ("Talbot").

In essence, Matra Murena was upgraded Bagheera with galvanized body. A variant with a 2.2-liter engine had a good performance
Nevertheless, a few years Peugeot SIMCA allowed to continue to develop their own models. Thus, a new family car Talbot Tagora ("Tagore"). He, like Talbot (formerly Chrysler-SIMCA) Alpine, and were borrowed components and assemblies for the fourth-generation sports car Matra, called Murena ("Moray") and appeared in late 1980
In the early 80s. The situation in the automotive industry in France has changed, and Matra formed an alliance with Renault ("Reno"), in which was created by a 7-seater Espace ("Espace"). Making Matra sports cars stopped.
Matra Bonnet Djet ("MatraBonneDzhet") 1964-1968
Sports Car Bonnet was created by Rene Bonnet in 1961 for its manufacture of components used on many production cars Renault, including the engine. But because of the precarious financial situation of the company in 1964 acquired the Matra and renamed the car in Matra Bonnet Djet.
Externally, the car was similar to the Alpine-Renault, used units of the same company, and they competed in one class. However, the layout is completely different machines. In contrast to the Alpine-Renault the same engine in the Renault R8 model Bonnet was within the wheelbase, and with the gearbox has been rotated by 180 °, which significantly improved the load distribution.

Djet - a driver's car, so it is equipped with bucket seats type, a small steering wheel and fine instruments
In the frame of the cap was attached a fully independent suspension, which gave, at least in theory, an advantage over competitors. Easily recognizable fiberglass 2-seater bodywork features a large convex rear window. Despite its high-speed quality, good management and efficiency, the car had a number of significant drawbacks, including high levels of internal noise.

Access to the four-cylinder engine Renault (1108 cm3) is provided with a cover behind the seats
Customers have a choice of several engines on the basis of engine Renault. The decision depended on where the car was to be used - on public roads or racing. The company offers both conventional engines (with a sucker rod operated valves, upper), and variants Gordini ("Gordini") with hemispherical combustion chambers. Toward the end of the production car appeared a special version of the motor dimensions 74,5 x72 mm (1.25 liters, 103 hp) and a 5-speed gearbox.
For a long time to arrange the car company Matra with a low reputation could not. On the one hand, she wanted to expand its participation in the Formula 2 race at first, and then the formula 1, and on the other, to create a spacious and perfect road car. As a result, the former plant of the company closed Bonnet and built a new in-Romorante not. Instead of laid off Djet appeared "M530A" engine Ford.

Djet - a driver's car, so it is equipped with bucket seats type, a small steering wheel and fine instruments

Characteristics (1964)
Engine: P4, the overhead
Bore and Stroke: 70x72 mm
Displacement: 1108 cm3
Maximum power: 72/95 hp
Transmission: 4-speed manual
Chassis: The frame on the cap
Suspension: independent on the helical springs
Brakes: disc
Body: 2-seater coupe
Maximum speed: 159 km / h (72 hp)
Matra M530A ("Matra M530A") 1967-1973
His first own design company Matra introduced at the Geneva Motor Show 1967 This was the angular coupe 2 2, a practical, relatively inexpensive to manufacture and even attractive in appearance. Called "M530A", the car remained in production for six years until he was replaced by the model did not come Bagheera. There were made ​​no less than 9690 copies of "M530A".

"M530A" has an angular body and then the roof type
New completely different from the Matra Bonnet Djet, though retained the old layout. Differences were in the engine and transmission, improved suspension and a monocoque body with a 2 +2 cabin. Body formed a nearly flat, not convex panel, in the framework of its power embedded arc security lights made ​​retractable and removable roof panel.
The basis of the body were welded platform of sheet steel space frame, which is mounted on the exterior fiberglass panel. Engine V4 (1,7 l) and a gearbox with final drive is completely borrowed from the German front-drive Ford Taunus 12M ("Taunus"). The compactness of the power unit has allowed designers to select other than the front trunk is also an additional compartment in the rear overhang above the gearbox.

The engine of the Ford Taunus V4 with one carburetor
The appearance of such a vehicle meant for the company a significant step forward, but the speed qualities and appeal to him was not enough, and therefore the related ambitions were not satisfied. Even with a set by a 1969 90 horsepower maximum speed not exceeding 175 km / h
The appearance of "M530A" best characterizes the French phrase "attractive ugly." Once in 1969, Matra has established links with the Chrysler-Europe ("Chrysler-Europe"), formerly SIMCA, using the engine Ford has become politically incorrect and had to develop a new model with chassis SIMCA.

Body "M530A" with the two parlor had two exterior fiberglass panel

Characteristics (1967)
Engine: V4, the overhead
Bore and stroke: 90x66, 8 mm
Displacement: 1699 cm3
Maximum power: 73 hp
Transmission: 4-speed manual
Chassis: on the host body
Suspension: independent on the helical springs
Brakes: disc
Body: Coupe 2 +2
Maximum speed: 175 km / h (90 hp)
Matra-Simca Bagheera ("Matra Bagheera Simka") 1973-1980
After the establishment of ties with Chrysler-Europe Matra company not only had to move to a new brand, but also to use the new components. Soon the name of the Matra-SIMCA appeared on its race cars, and in 1973 it was given and a new road car. The car replaced the clumsy model "M530A" and was named in honor of the famous Bagheera the black panther, the heroine of "Jungle Book" ("Jungle Book"), with the hope of continuity of character.

On the back of the form of this elegant coupe is clearly visible to the most characteristic feature: set in a number of seats for three people
This little machine is distinguished by an unusual arrangement of seats: they were three and they all settled down in front in a row. When it was created it was decided to make maximum use of components and assemblies front-wheel drive SIMCA 1100. As in his previous model "M530A", Matra took the layout of the engine within the wheelbase, simply by moving the engine and front-wheel drivetrain SIMCA back and making a major rear-wheel drive.
The frame body was a tubular structure with a spatial amplifiers in the most loaded field of Italian Renaissance style. The shape of a body created in the home, and for the manufacture of exterior panels applied over fiberglass.

With this arrangement turned out to be the driver compartment "rests" in the door. Note the vertically mounted radio
Inside, despite the triple layout, with facilities could accommodate only a driver, for which there was a single seat. For two passengers (not very big people) the right of the driver provided for general and small-seat sofa.
Because of this cabin on the Matra did not include this version of the right-hand drive car, although the British entrepreneurs have found that this is possible. Yet adaptation is very difficult and was expensive, so in the UK have been sold only a few of these machines.
Like all cars of this kind, Bagheera could have a more powerful engine and much better performance. Therefore, when assessing the car was always a sense of lack of power. It has not changed with the advent in 1979, 1.4-liter engine (optional with it installed in 1977). Nevertheless, the demand for the model was very high. In the 80's. Matra has scheduled the production of a new car Murena ("Murena") with a more powerful engine. In total it has produced 47,802 Bagheera. The last few copies of it were an emblem of Talbot-Matra.

Created in-house body Bagheera had a very low front. He demanded the installation of retractable headlamps

Characteristics (1973)
Engine: P4, the overhead
Bore and Stroke: 76,7 x70 mm
Displacement: 1294 cm3
Maximum power: 84 hp
Transmission: 4-speed manual
Chassis: on the host body
Suspension: Independent torsion bar
Brakes: disc
Body: 3-seater coupe
Maximum speed: 163 km / h
Matra Murena ("Matra Murena") 1980-1983
Very good demand in the 70s. on the model of Matra Bagheera forced the company to create a new machine to keep the old layout and number of units of the chassis. Murena was also rear-drive coupe with a three-engine within the wheelbase, but features a new fashionable body and better performance. Collected a novelty in the same factory in Romorantene, but due to a change of owner (Chrysler has sold its French Peugeot and reminders of SIMCA is left) the car was the emblem of Talbot, although most people simply called him Matra.

Front and side car looked like a model Murena Bagheera, but the roof and the back of significantly different
For Murena company offered a choice of two engines - the old model the overhead SIMCA dimensions 80,6 x78 mm (1.6-liter, 92 hp) or the more modern 2.2-liter from the Talbot Tagora ("Tagore") with 4-cylinder engine. The front torsion bar suspension is preserved by Bagheera, while the rear set up an independent MacPherson struts with.
Body fastback style was simple and pleasant, and the car itself, as well as other machines of this arrangement, had an excellent exchange rate stability. In many respects, may be called Murena extended version of FIAT X1 / 9 or more well-designed version of the Lancia Monte Carlo ("Lancia Monte Carlo") with the same problem of limited space for luggage. The car was collected only from the left-hand-steering. Very little is known of later alterations to the right-hand drive models.

The most powerful engine for the Murena was a 2.2-liter 4-cylinder unit from the sedan Talbot Tagora
Rationalization of Peugeot-Talbot in the early 80s. has meant that the company was forced to turn Matra Murena production due to the cessation of production of its engine. But the surviving connection with Renault allowed to download the vacated facilities for the manufacture of high-capacity wagon Espace.
For three years the company managed to collect 10 613 Matra Murena. This model was the last road car, with its logo. By all indications, Murena was supposed to be more popular than Bagheera, because the problem of corrosion of the bearing of the body has been eliminated by the introduction of the process of galvanizing.

With the engine in the 2.2-liter Murena was fast and attractive model. In her salon next to each other were placed three

Characteristics (1980)
Engine: P 4, the upper cam
Bore and Stroke: 91,7 x81, 6 mm
Displacement: 2156 cm3
Maximum Power: 118 hp
Transmission: 5-speed manual
Chassis: on the host body
Suspension: independent, torsion bar front, rear MacPherson strut
Brakes: disc
Body: 3-seater coupe
Maximum speed: 182 km / h

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