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Engineer takes on Westfield

One of Britain’s most senior engineers has bought Westfield Sportscars which he will run with three members of his immediate family.

Frank Turner, 63, is a former main board director of Rolls-Royce plc, the aero engine company, and was also previously managing director of Lucas Aerospace.

Westfield founder Chris Smith set up the company in 1982 by building replica Lotus XIs – the 1956 Le Mans car. It ceased production after four years but was revived two years ago.

The mainstay of the business now is the Lotus Seven look-alike – a kit car with sub-four second acceleration to 62mph and a range of engines including motor-cycle power units.

The company makes 400 vehicles a year at Kingswinford in the Midlands. Chris Smith remains an investor and consultant but the business will be run by Frank Turner’s son Julian who is managing director. His sister, Suzanne Turner, and her husband, Paul Faithfull, both consulting engineers, are on the board.

Julian Turner says: “We are here to grow the business. There are a number of ways of improving both product and process.”

The family took control on December 1. Turner insists that nothing is off the table – including use of a dealership network for the kit cars that traditionally sell via the factory.

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