THE PUMA GT4R QUATRO RODAS
NOTE: The following article was written by Antonio Araujo Pinho.
In 1968, L. Bilyk, marketing director of the Brazilian motor magazine Quatro Rodas, was interested in conducting a promotional campaign to increase sales of the magazine. To this purpose, he hired the Puma factory to make a special limited edition of three sports cars which were to be raffled off among the magazine's readers.
An enthusiastic group composed of Rino Malzoni, Anisio Campos, Milton Masteguim, and Jorge Lettry was immediately involved in the project. After one year of work, the first car was delivered. The prototype was made in steel, as a mold, at Rino Malzoni's farm "Chimbo" near Sao Paulo. After a series of hard tests, the prototype was used at the Puma factory to make the 3 fiberglass production cars.
The production cars were painted metallic maroon, blue, and green. The interior of all three cars was finished in tan leather. J. Lettry decided to use a 1600 cc VW engine (two Solex 32), and for added stopping power, the GT 4R was equipped with front disc brakes.
The Puma Quatro Rodas seen in the picture was found in 1997, near perfect, with 72,000 km on the odometer. Following a cosmetic restoration, it has been used regularly including in rallye competition.
The PUMA GT 4R was a completely Brazilian project. It represents an outstanding effort in aotomotive design and construction, particularly considering the technical conditions at the time in Brazil.