Mantula ...

The Mantula Coupe was launched at the Motor Show in 1984 beginning a long relationship between Marcos and the Rover V8 engine.

The Mantula Coupe evolved  from the 3 Litre form with the addition of a front end spoiler,- giving the car a lower approach angle, extended wheel arches, a wider back end, and a bonded windscreen. The interior was also altered with the addition of a gearlever console, incorporating storage trays. The suspension was unaltered from the 3 Litre .

Scenic shot of silver Mantula in sunset

The fully built option was introduced alongside cars in component form.  Factory paintwork, leather upholstery and a walnut dashboard were available as extras on component built cars. The first factory built cars were fitted with the carburettor V8 engine sourced direct from Land Rover until the introduction of the 3.5 Efi engine as fitted to the Range Rover in 1986, latterly phased out in favour of the more powerful 3.9 engine.

170 Mantula Coupe's were produced at the factory in Westbury between 1983 and 1992.


The Marcos factory in 1988
The Marcos factory in 1988

 In July 1985 Marcos ventured for the second time into a soft top car with the Mantula Spyder. The original car was fitted with a detachable T-top which was dropped on subsequent production models due to being too expensive to produce and not entirely practical. 

Period photo of Mantula Spyder

This venture into open top motoring was almost as successful  as the coupe version with production figures totaling 119  Mantula Spyders  built between 1985 and 1992.

In 1986 with  Ford live axles becoming difficult to source, the fully independent rear suspension was introduced. Utilising differential and hubs from the Ford Sierra range and wishbones, uprights and A-frame developed by Marcos, transforming the ride quality of the range, the live axle was phased out on factory built cars at this stage.

Along side the 3.9 engine option the Ford 2 litre DOHC engine was available as a more economic and less powerful version of the Mantula. Both available in spyder and coupe format.