NAA Business Excellence Company Profile: Chevron
Continuing this month’s motorsport theme, we’re delighted that Chevron, one of the few remaining British Heritage Motor Racing marques, has joined the NAA as a Business Excellence member, and a Chevron B25 even won its class in this year’s Cholmondeley Pageant of Power
Chevron was founded in 1965 by the genius designer Derek Bennett and he led the company to many national and international successes until his untimely death in 1978. Since then Chevron has continued to support the owners of the original cars by manufacturing replacement chassis, components, suspension, wheels and fibreglass bodywork, all in-house at its facility in Antrobus near Northwich, Cheshire, to customers in the UK and all over the world.
In recent years Chevron developed a small two-seater road car project, which is currently on hold, and in 2009 the company designed and made a new racing car, the Chevron GR8 within 6 months from conception to completion, with eight cars on the track for the first race. Chevron subsequently sold this project on and the company has been concentrating on its core historic business for the last twelve months. This involves the manufacture of New Chevron Continuation Cars to the original FIA specification and the company is currently looking at building these cars with a cheaper more modern 2.0-litre engine and gearbox. This means that a prospective buyer can purchase at a lower price but still have a car in correct FIA historic specification, then run it at Track Days or other events such as Sprints & Hillclimbs or even more modern motor races, with the intention to return at some stage to the factory and have the engine and gearbox replaced ready for historic competition.
Chevron is a family-owned business. Head of Engineering and all things technical, Vin Malkie, used to work at Chevron with Derek Bennett over 40 years ago. Managing Director, Helen Bashford-Malkie, raced Chevrons successfully in sports car and single-seater formula events, finally competing in the FIA Thoroughbred Grandprix Cars Championship in a Shadow DN9B, ex-Clay Regazzoni and Elio de Angelis. She was the first woman on the podium in an FIA Formula 1 race and racing at tracks such as Monza, Nurburgring, Silverstone, Spa and Brands Hatch.
Chevron’s small but effective and highly skilled team, some of whom have been with the company for over thirty years, really can make a car in-house from nothing to a complete racing car. The company also repairs and makes replacement chassis for all other models of historic racing cars. A recent project was the new refurbishment of a Hesketh Formula 1 car that immediately went on to win Monaco Historique. A very recent addition to their facilities is an in-house machine shop for making and machining one-off components in aluminium, steel and magnesium. Chevron also has a large flat bed (ex-Jaguar works) and provides help and support to race teams on technical input and suspension set-up.
In 2013 the company instigated its Chevron Ambassadors programme to help flag up and mentor young racing drivers competing in historic motorsport who don’t normally get any help. Training is a big part of Chvron’s ethos and despite being a micro-company it usually operates an Apprenticeship programme, summer placements for young people or students, and the company is currently supporting the bid for a University Technical College (UTC) in Cheshire alongside Bentley Motors and other companies in the county.
For more information visit www.chevronracing.com