Absent without leave…

Firstly another apology, sorry we haven’t blogged since February, no real excuse, just a lack of time… but now we fully intend to get back in the flow. Over the next couple of weeks we will tell you what Mario, Regie and the humans have been up to this year in the motoring world and we have lots of interesting finds to share..

To get started though, yesterday was Halloween and popping up on social media was a fantastic Hearse, a wooden carved Cadillac from 1929, looking like something out of a Disney Cartoon, sort of a spooky version of Cinderella’s pumpkin coach. This got us thinking about the fabulous Multipla Hearse we blogged about in 2012 and so started a trawl through the internet.

One normally thinks of a hearse as a dignified, sensible and probably boring way to make that final journey with a bit of respect but my goodness we found some weird and wacky options…

Other types of Fiat and we think an Alfa, practical in the same style as the Multipla, pretty sensible but with a touch of Italian Bling.

An E-Type Jag for the sporty option

Ornate carving is a popular thing…
Top: a Buick 1929
Middle: a Cunningham 1929.
Bottom group: No idea of the cars or dates below but all look like they starred in Wacky Races. I think these are probably in a Funeral Museum in the USA.

Cadillac’s from late 1930’s early 40’s

60’s space age – a huge Cadillac Fleetwood Eureka

And a Buick, found in Greece and currently undergoing restoration.

If you thought the previous ones were ornate, now have a look at the Asian versions, mini temples decked out in gold.

For the Military funeral or just for enthusiasts the Tank Hearse.

For when you want to combine your funeral with a holiday!

No words… The end.

Weird and Wonderful 3 – the Lonestar Meteor

Weird and Wonderful posts come about because something has popped up somewhere online and sparked our interest…pink-meteor-frontYes, I realise it’s a boat but it looks like a car and is certainly weird and wacky!  The development of fibreglass construction in the mid-late fifties allowed boat constructors to incorporate ‘car-like’ features of the time, such as fins, into their designs, the Meteor went further with Crome trim, headlights and the two-tone paintwork popular on American ‘Jet Age’ cars of the time.

Built by Lone Star Boat Manufacturers, a company founded in Texas in 1945 building traditional boats, a fibreglass facility was added in 1952 and by 1954 it was enlarged to allow 31 different models to be offered for sale.lonestar-adlonestar-brochure

In 1956 the Meteor was designed by Bob Hammond for GM, to be displayed at ‘A boat of the Future’ at the National Boat Show. It was so popular that a limited production run began of the four-seater boat with a 40HP motor and went on sale for $1600.

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Jet age fibreglass boats were originally considered to be ‘ugly’ after the classical elegant beauty of traditional wooden boats but are now very collectable and sort after, very few remain.

The Meteor one of the most popular in it’s time has a possible 60 or so examples still in existence. A 60-horsepower 1957 Mercury Mk 75 outboard powers this beautifully restored and very pink example, which I believe is owned by Kevin Mueller of Rockton. It has been display in the FINS: Form without function exhibition at the Peterson Automotive Museum in LA.

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As always when researching these posts I come across more and more info and my search widens, there were other equally weird and wacky boats designed around the same time including the Evinrude ‘Cadillac’ Sea Lark which was designed by great industrial designer Brooks Stevens. Owners often towed their boats with a matching finned Cadillac, you could even buy ‘mudguards’ for your trailer with fins!sealark-trailertrailer-wheelevinrude-lark-1 evinrude-lark-2I also discovered another collaboration between Brooks Stevens and Evinrude but it’s so weird and wacky I think it deserves a small post of it’s own, so watch this space…