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-P-M-I- Cars and Museum


#1

-P-M-I- (Simply PMI until 1986)

Private Miros International

PMI is a company whose name has its roots in tanking. For the sake of the story, let’s say in maintaining the engines and chassis. This knowledge was used to start a car company after the second world war. A company that started humble but in less than a decade went global.

Work conducted on lend-lease tanks to the Soviet Union also gave PMI a gateway into Eastern Europe and USSR.

In time, next to extensive own production – though sometimes limited to a local market area – PMI also estblished an extensive collection of automotive rarities. Below are showcased examples of both own production, as well as some collectors’ items.

Collection:

Own Production Collection
1963 PMI-KG 200 1965 Ushuaia Hidalgo 42 GT
1964 PMI (US) Goodfella (Four - V8 Sport - V8 Premium Automatic) 1982 Matilde SM41
1966 PMI (Europe) Puma Sport 1978 Birkin 25 Starstruck
2019 -P-M-I- (EU) Puma 1.4 Turbo (soon) 2018 -P-M-I- (EU) Puma Concept Retro Package (soon)
2019 -P-M-I- (US) Hawking (1.8 Turbo - V8 Luxe) (soon) 2018 -P-M-I- (US) NYIAS Concept SUV (soon)

#2

1963-1966 PMI-KG 100
1963-1966 PMI-KG 200

Let’s start with the PMI-KG, a budget leisure car for that formed the entry for PMI on the Southern American market in 1963, in collaboration with KG Motors, a Brazillian-German company working with older German tech.

It was not a undevided success, admittedly, but the two version offered, called the “100” and the “200”, did find their public in a niche that could be called hotch hatches avant la lettre.

Both types differed little from each other, having a ladder chassis and standard metal bodywork with 2 doors and 4 seats. The design was a bit dated for the time and so was the engine, both being inspired by late 50s German models. Both types had a 4-speed gearbox, driving the rear wheels, with the engine longitudinally placed in the front. They both had double wishbone suspension in the front and semi-trailing arm suspension in the rear. Both cars offered only basic comfort, yet reasonable safety and weighed in around the 800-815 kg (~1770-1800 lb) mark.

The marginally cheaper “100” (5200 USD compared to 5400 USD) had a 1192 cc inline 4 engine with 8 valves putting out 40 horsepower (at 4400 rpm) and 79 Nm of torque (at 2500 rpm). The “200” used the same block but bored out to 1295 cc, resulting in 50 HP (at 4400 rpm) and 80 Nm (at 2900 rpm). The “200” reached over 140 km/h (over 85 mph) with reasonable acceleration (0-100: 18,8 s; ¼ mile: 21,5 s).

The cars were reliable and had decent drivability and utility, but suffered in terms of comfort and were not particulary sporty, which meant they ended up floating somewhere the city car market and the budget small nippy car market. Running until 1966, about 3500 “100s” and 6200 “200s” were sold.


#3

1965 Ushuaia Hidalgo 42 GT

In the PMI Americas collection:

An Argentinian grand tourer with a European inspired body and a US-based engine, developed in the late 50s and being produced in small quantities from 1961 to 1968. While the body and the engine were partially hand-made, this was not a luxury car; and some components were used from other Ushuaia cars, including the engine, which was a modified version of a US straight-six pick up engine Ushuaia built in-house under licence. Despite this, the big six cylinder engine ran smoothly although it did sound a bit truck-like. There are some that claim that with its large torquey engine it was more a Southern American version of a muscle car than of a European grand tourer.

The history of this particular car is interesting, as it was bought by a governmental official who was – rightfully or not – convicted for fraud by the military junta that took over the country soon after. The car was then impounded and declared government property and given to the intelligence services as fast interceptor. And fast it was, despite its truck engine, accelerating from 0-100 in under 10 seconds and reaching top speeds of over 180 km/h while remaining relatively stable on the road. The car was also able to run at high speed for a very long time – with the necessary fuel stops.

The car was decommissioned somewhere in the early 70s, before the so-called Dirty War, and somehow the car ended up in Uruguay. Fast forward to the mid-80 and some adventurer took it – still going strong – on a road trip to Panama. There it was sold and taken by ship to Germany. By the mid-2000s the car was in a stable in Bavaria, where a PMI employee found it after being tipped that the owner had some interesting old PMI components lying around. The Hidalgo was bought for a small sum and restored for museum exhibition.

Specifications

Engine Specs Hidalgo Six
Description Straight-6, cast iron block and heads, forged crankshaft, conrods and pistons
Valvetrain Pushrod – 2 valves per cylinder
Bore x Stroke 88.2 mm x 116.5 mm
Displacement 4172 cc
Aspiration 3 single-barrel performance carburetors
Compression Ratio 7.5:1
Output 156 HP @ 4200 rpm, 313 Nm @ 2300 rpm
Redline 4500 rpm

Chassis Specs: Ushuaia Hidalgo 42 GT
Layout Front-engined, RWD
Interior 2 + 2 premium seats and a premium AM radio
Chassis/Body Galvanised steel ladder / Handmade steel panels
Suspension Double-wishbone F / Semi-trailing arm R
Driveline 4-speed MT, open differential
Brakes Discs F / Drums R
Curb Weight 1317 kg
Weight Distribution F:56% - R:44%
0-100 km/h 9,8 s
Top Speed 196 km/h
100-0 Braking Distance 54,3 m
List Price, New $ 10188
Production Run 1961-1968
Examples Produced 1048

The Painful 80's [UE4] [OPEN THREAD]
#4

1966 PMI (Europe) Puma Sport

A little gem that set the trend for PMI in Europe and their specialisation in light sports cars.

The Puma body was developed as a concept car for the 1964 Paris motor show. 15 cars were built in 1965 with a specially developed 3 cylinder racing engine for racing. Immediately winning people over with its simple but beautiful style and its racing prowess, PMI noticed the market was there to built 100 cars for street use, sold in 1966 and 1967, conveniently homologating the Puma for additional competitions. The Puma raced until 1969, but had most of its success in its two first years.

The homologation allowed it to enter circuit endurance races, but the engine proved to be too unreliable for such heavy burden. The low top speed also meant the Puma was better for short and twisty tracks.

Nowadays the Puma is still appreciated for its sleek looks and fetches impressive amounts at auction. For the geadheads among us, the real gem is the that little 1.1 litre race engine, which easily has to be the best sounding 3 cylinder engine the 60s produced, both in the low rpms as well as up high.

Note, both audio files are uploaded to not too great quality. The first one has a bit more bass for on small speakers. Both are pretty horrible on my decent home pc speakers though… The recording wasn’t that great either. But having the sound fits the lore here.

(can be streamed, not downloads)


Specifications

Engine Specs PMI EUDR-I “Puma”
Description Inline-3, aluminium block and heads, forged crankshaft, cast conrods and forged pistons
Valvetrain Dual Overhead Cams – 2 valves per cylinder
Bore x Stroke 83.5 mm x 67.5 mm
Displacement 1109 cc
Aspiration 1 DCOE carburetor
Compression Ratio 11.0:1
Output 92 HP @ 6200 rpm, 112 Nm @ 5600 rpm
Redline 7000 rpm

Chassis Specs: PMI Puma Sport
Layout Front-engined, RWD
Interior 2 basic seats
Chassis/Body Galvanised steel monocoque / Fibreglass panels
Suspension Double-wishbone F / R
Driveline 4-speed MT, open differential
Brakes Discs F / R
Curb Weight 706 kg
Weight Distribution F:54% - R:46%
0-100 km/h 9,4 s
Top Speed 156 km/h
100-0 Braking Distance 32,1 m
List Price, New $ 12217
Production Run 1965-1967
Examples Produced 100 sports + 15 early and 10 late race

#5

(I’ve never before quintuple-posted on a forum before.)

1964 PMI (US) Goodfella

Staying in the sixties, the PMI Goodfella was meant to be a people’s car first and foremost. The main design goal was an affordable car with a new 4-cylinder engine, offering 5 seats in decent comfort. The car had a relatively simple and cheap to produce engine coupled to a manual gearbox and a relatively cheap chassis as well, with double wishbone suspension in the front, but with a solid rear axle with coil springs.

The commercial department of PMI US insisted however that an 8-cylinder option should be offered as well, and so a V8 engine was developed next to and from the new 4-cylinder one, as the basis was two of those 4-cylinder engines strapped together in a 90° angle. The newly developed flat-plane crankshaft and optimization made this far more than just a paste job.

Commercial departments are not always right, but in this case they were. The 4-cylinder version did its job and the car certainly had its audience, but with 70HP it was underpowered for American audiences. The V8s, and certainly the one offered with automatic transmission, turned out to be more popular. Not that the V8 used qualified the Goodfella (a name legend tells us was born out of a shady meeting between a New York PMI marketing manager and some business associates) as a muscle car, producing only 166 horsepower. This notwithstanding the V8 manual was sold as a sport version of the car, offering place to only 4 people. The automatic version offered a more premium interior for 5 and was considered affordable, comfortable and utilitarian.

Style-wise the Goodfella was a nice car, although never considered one of the classics. Especially the front end was not considered particularly beautiful, yet it was modern and different for the time. The designed aged better than the engine and chassis. The Four and standard V8 were taken out of production in January 1968. The automatic V8 went on for another two years, but this was fairly limited. The main years of success were 1964-1966.


Four

Specifications

Engine Specs PMI USFC62a20
Description Inline-4, cast iron block and heads, cast crankshaft and forged conrods and pistons
Valvetrain Pushrod – 2 valves per cylinder
Bore x Stroke 86.0 mm x 89.5 mm
Displacement 2080 cc
Aspiration 2 single-barrel carburetors
Compression Ratio 6.8:1
Output 70 HP @ 4200 rpm, 140 Nm @ 2600 rpm
Redline 4700 rpm

Chassis Specs: PMI Goodfella Four
Layout Front-engined, RWD
Interior 5 standard seats, basic AM radio
Chassis/Body Galvanised steel ladder / Steel panels
Suspension Double-wishbone F / Solid Axle Coil R
Driveline 4-speed MT, open differential
Brakes Drums F / Drums R
Curb Weight 1103 kg
Weight Distribution F:56% - R:44%
0-100 km/h 17,3 s
Top Speed 145 km/h
100-0 Braking Distance 51,4 m
List Price, New $ 7118
Production Run 1964-1968
Examples Produced 366700

V8

Specifications

Engine Specs PMI USEC64a42
Description V-8, 90°, cast iron block and heads, cast flatplane crankshaft and forged conrods and pistons
Valvetrain Pushrod – 2 valves per cylinder
Bore x Stroke 86.0 mm x 89.5 mm
Displacement 4159 cc
Aspiration 2 two-barrel carburetors
Compression Ratio 6.8:1
Output 166 HP @ 4300 rpm, 303 Nm @ 2600 rpm
Redline 4700 rpm

Chassis Specs: PMI Goodfella V8 Sport PMI Goodfella V8 Premium Automatic
Layout Front-engined, RWD Front-engined, RWD
Interior 4 premium seats, standard AM radio 5 premium seats, premiumAM radio
Chassis/Body Galvanised steel ladder / Steel panels Galvanised steel ladder / Steel panels
Suspension Double-wishbone F / Solid Axle Coil R Double-wishbone F / Solid Axle Coil R
Driveline 4-speed MT, open differential 3-speed AT, open differential
Brakes Drums F / Drums R Discs F / Drums R
Curb Weight 1304 kg 1346 kg
Weight Distribution F:58% - R:42% F:58% - R:42%
0-100 km/h 9,6 s 11,2 s
Top Speed 189 km/h 190 km/h
100-0 Braking Distance 55,6 m 55,0 m
List Price, New $ 10270 $ 11262
Production Run 1964-1968 1964-1970
Examples Produced 136405 718900

#6

It appears we have here the world’s first ever crossover!


#7

The V8s actually do score best in the Sports Utility category.

The original intent was to make the 4 cylinder the 60s version of Model A, a budget family car useful both in the city as well as on unpaved rural roads.


#8

Fair play, seems like a good recreation imo.


#9

The Goodfella (I feel like I need a gangster accent for that name, haha) certainly evokes one car and one car only; the AMC Eagle.
Its design is perhaps a bit too simplistic (then again, it is a rugged family hauler), but the ride height is eerily similar to the Eagle’s. Even if it isn’t AWD, the shoe still fits…

I do wonder, though; would it work with a wagon body?


#10

This car is butt ugly, bu the design works! I like that you managed to make use of the ridiculous amount of bonnet/hood deformation available from this body. That big grill is well implemented and, with the large round lights, it helps to reflect the cars of previous decades.


#11

It’s special, it’s a car that you grow to love because rationally you should think it’s ugly. But in reality you feel oddly attracted by dopey front and happy stance.

All jokes aside, I hope to present a more esthetically pleasing PMI car based on the PMI “Puma”, powered by a modern interpretation of that three cylinder engine.


#12

btw, just so it’s clear, I was referring to the Ushuaia Hidalgo :slight_smile:

Looking forward to an improved Puma though!


#13

Oops, still getting used the forum lay-out I guess…

Still need to make some design and engineering choices on the 2018 Puma. Grills and rear lights choices mainly in the design.


#14

I find the rear end of cars is always difficult to make look interesting. I used the same body as your Puma for my Tempest. I struggled for a good while to find a balance between interesting and minimalist.


#15

Sneak peek at some modern to presented at NYIAS added in the first post.

Pictures in the NYIAS thread are early concepts.


#16

1978 Birkin 25 Starstruck

Birkin Motors Limited is a Melbourne-based engine maintenance and tuning company created in the late 40s to service US car and agricultural engines. In the 1960s, when the muscle car era was mainstream, the company started to specialize in European import. This cumulated in the production of their own car – on US platforms but with European styling – in the 1970s.

The Birkin Starstruck was a limited production sports and track car built from 1976 to 1981. This one is in the PMI collection, because it uses a European-made PMI racing block, although detuned for street use. The engine was a single overhead cam, two and a halve liter V8 in a 90° angle, producing 185 horsepower.

Despite that its styling might lead to the conclusion that this car was a 70s mid-engined supercar, the Birkin had a simple ladder chassis and a front engine, rear-wheel drive layout. This did not mean the Birkin was a slow car. It had sports suspension and a 5-speed manual gearbox. The car reached 100 km/h within 7 seconds and continued easily to 200 km/h.

The car was relatively affordable and catered to the Australian audience that liked the stylish, but expensive to import European cars of the era. Production was obviously extremely limited. Today only a handful of these cars (which had serious rust issues) survive.

Specifications

Engine Specs PMI EUER76c25
Description V-8, 90°, cast iron block and heads, forged crankshaft, conrods and pistons
Valvetrain Overhead Cam – 3 valves per cylinder
Bore x Stroke 74.9 mm x 70.5 mm
Displacement 2485 cc
Aspiration 2 DCOE performance carburetors
Compression Ratio 10.2:1
Output 185 HP @ 6500 rpm, 232 Nm @ 4400 rpm
Redline 7200 rpm

Chassis Specs: Birkin 25 Starstruck
Layout Front-engined, RWD
Interior 2 standard seats, basic AM radio
Chassis/Body Galvanised steel ladder / Steel panels
Suspension Double-wishbone F / R
Driveline 5-speed MT, automatic locker
Brakes Solid discs F / R
Curb Weight 1194 kg
Weight Distribution F:59% - R:41%
0-100 km/h 6,7 s
Top Speed 206 km/h
100-0 Braking Distance 35,7 m
List Price, New $ 12090
Production Run 1976-1981
Examples Produced 1060

#17

2 quick questions.

  1. Fuel consumption?
  2. How much better would this car have been with the full race spec engine?

#18
  1. Very reasonable for the time and for a V8.
  1. The racing engine has mechanical injection instead of carburators and makes 274 horsepower. It’s simply too powerful and high revving for the chassis and layout of the car. It would be sportier and faster, but overall worse.

With modified down-tuned engine:

With unmodified racing engine:


#19

Love the birkin 25 design, Sporty and aerodynamic combined with pop up headlight, brilliant