The first carbon fibre-bodied car built at AC Cars’ new production plant in Malta is now on the way to the US.

The Mark V is destined for one of AC’s new dealers in America. Once fitted with an engine of the buyer’s choice, it will retail for around $US75,000.

AC now builds cars in two locations. Its factory near Guildford in the UK uses traditional methods and the original body jigs dating from 1962 to create aluminium bodyshells which are shipped to Shelby Automobiles for completion, and then sold as the Shelby AC CSX1000 series.

The new and still-being-commissioned plant in Malta will build a range of carbon-fibre bodied cars, for sale in the US and later in Europe.

AC chairman Alan Lubinsky said: “Moving carbon fibre production to Malta has given us tremendous advantages in terms of efficiency and capacity – our new factory has almost unlimited space for expansion.

“We are delighted with our Maltese team and appreciate very much the tremendous co-operation we have received from the relevant authorities here in setting up our new venture”.