Sunday, January 4, 2015

5k: Happy Kit: 1962 La Dawri Sebring

Up until a few hours ago, you could have walked up to me and said that La Dawri Sebring was the actress who won an Oscar for best supporting actress in the 2014 flick 12 Years A Slave.   I would have agreed and remarked that I have not seen the film, but critics gave her performance very positive reviews.  We would both have a great laugh once you revealed that the La Dawri Sebring is a fiberglass kit sold in the 1960s.  Find this 1962 La Dawri Sebring here on eBay currently bidding for $2,550 reserve-not-met, located in Grosse Point, MI with 2 days to go.

La Dawri Coachcraft was a fiberglass kit-car manufacturer that started in British Columbia in the 1950s, but soon moved to Southern California (hot bed of the hot rod car culture).  La Dawri featured a number of fiberglass designs and you can read more about them here on forgottenfiberglass.

The Volvo B-series inline-4 in this thing comes from a PV544 and displaces 1.6 liters while pushing out 66 horsepower in single carb B16A trim.  This particular engine features the rare "floating plug" arrangement....errr...expect to spend some time fixing whatever is wrong with it. 

Sebring number 8 (according to the seller) was purchased from La Dawri in 1961 and includes an advanced steering wheel safety device.   You are going to have a great time trying to find out which cars donated their factory pieces to build this thing, and will probably need to do some junk yard searching for parts down the road.

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  1. Steering wheel design donated by county fair bumper car.

    1. I was just getting ready to post that same idea!

  2. I found that car last night. I'd call that a very promising project. Not enough to drive across the country for, but fun, stylish, unique (in a slightly goofy way) and cheap. What's not to like?

  3. The instrument panel is also from Volvo

  4. Looks like the airbag has been deployed

  5. 50 years of wearing that facebow and it still has that goofy grin.

  6. It is, once you get rid of that Gardner Bender fabricated push-bar on the nose, a much more attractive shape than most of the Fiberfab/Kellison/etc. nonsense though not Devin.

    As far as junkyard parts, once you get past the Volvo bits you'll be looking for the leftover piece of carnival spaceship rides.

    Someone post wheebase and track width so we can start pontificating on what to rechassis this thing with. C5 backbone presumably too wide. Miata suspensions fit under it? Got any friends with kids working on their MSME who need a thesis project designing a frame?

  7. I don't know if I'd be smiling that wide if I had an orthodontic headgear that prominent.

  8. Nice lines for the era, but I think it would look better in Any Color But White


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