1954 Corvette Nomad Concept Recreation

1954-corvette-nomad-recreation

Special thanks to Reader Robert J, who discovered and shared this 1954 Corvette Nomad Concept Car recreation with us. While it’s not the actual concept car Chevrolet built for the 1954 Motorama, it’s still a fascinating find. Unlike the actual concept car, this one runs and drives, it’s even safe for highway speeds. After investing considerable time and money into it, the owner has decided to part ways with it and has listed it here on eBay. It might not be a “barn find”, but it’s definitely an interesting find to learn more about.

1954-corvette-nomad-factory-ad

The seller has gone to great lengths to make sure their recreation is as close to the concept as possible. Sadly, Chevrolet destroyed the concept car four years after building it. This meant that the entire recreation had to be built from old photos and drawings of the concept car. The project was started in 1999 and completed seven years and four hundred thousand dollars later. Hopefully the owner feels the results were worth the investment, but it looks fantastic.

1954-corvette-nomad-recreation-interior

Chevrolet’s creation was built on the very first Corvette chassis, which they lengthened and attached the fiberglass shell to. While the interior was complete, the original car lacked a powertrain and couldn’t be driven. To build a Corvette Nomad that could actually be driven, the recreation was built on a 1955 Pontiac Safari donor chassis with a Camaro front end and 350 V8. The entire interior was custom built to match the concept car and it looks great. More information on how it was built can be found at WaldorfNomad.com

1954-corvette-nomad-recreation-tailgate

The exclusive and radical nature of concept cars makes them extremely valuable and hard to come by, but we question whether the seller will get as much out of this recreation as they hope. If it were the actual concept car it would be worth an incredible amount of money, but since it’s actually a custom Pontiac Safari, they will likely struggle to get their investment back out of it. We would still love to take it out for an afternoon cruise. What about you? Would you have invested this kind of money into a recreation?

Josh About Josh

I have been hunting down barn finds since childhood and my passion for automobiles has only grown stronger through the years. When Jesse told me about his idea for this site, I was more than a little excited. Before he had even finished the site, I was already writing the very first posts! And it has been an amazing trip ever since!

Comments

  1. Lee

    An amazing amount of work but I would not put that kind of money into it…I think it’s an art of passion that the owner had for the original show car.

  2. AMCFAN

    GM built and killed the original off for a reason. Taking two original cars (Nomad and Corvette) distroying them in the process then combining both (and spending 400K in the process) doesn’t make much sense. Every one dreams what if but sometimes the dream should be left alone. The seller is going to take a beating. Wow.

  3. Dolphin Dolphin

    I guess this is what happens when passion takes hold. I like Nomad wagons a lot, including the original show versions, but I hope sanity would take over before I was tempted to spend the better part of half a million dollars on a tribute recreation, which is all you can call it given the 350 SBC engine and the Pontiac chassis.

    Not much chance of getting much of your money back for it on an eBay sale. As usual, my advice would be to take it to the right B-J auction, get it into the best day/time slot, and hope for the best. If it gets bid to $100K, take it.

  4. paul

    I suppose the comments above are valid, a lot of $’s spent & tough to get all that they put into it back, that said,I think they would be better to bring it to an RM or B-J.

    I do admire the build quality, from the explanation they state they had to widen the nose 2″ but it looks like 2 ” on each side making it 4″ total so they had to make the grille custom 4″ & the hood as well , I also like the way they married the original fenders to the custom lower half of the front fenders.I don’t think they destroid an early Vette as was mentioned above because very little of this car is a Vette & all those parts are available new.

    As with many projects like this, we all on this site, would do this in a heart beat given time, money & space, so my hat is off to the many folks involved in this project,the final results of this look first rate.

  5. Rene

    Everybody is free to spend their money on whatever they please and whatever adds more value to their lives. But I don’t think that I would have spent that much money on this project. But once you get started…and if you have a dream…
    I think that it will be very difficult to get their investment out of it.

  6. Alan Northcott

    The reserve is “pennies on the dollar”, but the current price is nearly a dime on a dollar, with reserve not met.

  7. Sean smith

    Beautiful well done.

  8. kurt

    The “re-creator” did a masterful job of bringing a “dream” to life. He has MY respect, and I am guessing that the new owner will be thrilled out his mind. It’s one of a very, very few Corvettes that ever caught my eye (the stretched four-passenger Stingray dream car and the four-door executive express of the 70’s (early 80″s?) being two of them). It does, however, seem to be almost too wonderful to be on ebay instead of at a Barrett-Jackson or RM event….

  9. dave

    During the past several “Chevrolet Nomad Assn.” annual conventions, about five different Waldorf Nomads have appeared. Some of these have been in process for 20+ years and are of various quallity. I looked into building one in 1971, and decided it would be above my finanical ability, and destroy to many donner cars. My hat’s off to the many who have tried. Dave. P.S. One of these builders offered a body and chassis to build you own. If anyone is interested, E-Mail me and I will look up his add, or contact C.N.A. at the website.

  10. Ken M

    I’m going to wait for the four-door model to come out (which is a face-saving way of saying “I only wish my wife wouldn’t kill me if I even thought about bidding.”)

  11. Graham Lloyd

    Given the amount of dollars and effort, I agree that ebay won’t get him the money he wants. If you look at the other listings the seller/dealer has on ebay you will see the 1956 Chrysler Plainsman wagon. I’ve watched that car various times on ebay and it never gets much in the way of action.

    They both should be added to one of the circuses/auctions. He won’t get the 400 large he invested back (based on how much auctions bring versus build costs) but he will lose less than he will on ebay.

    I am no vette fan by any stretch, but this is one beautiful car. If I only had the money….

  12. Catfish Phil

    Something like this should be auctioned by Barrett Johnson or the like – for maximum exposure to the proper audience (deep pockets!)…

  13. scot

    ~ i love this Corvette Nomad, and the Ghia Plainsman, too. if had the time, money and resources to create the phenomenal tributes and drop 3/4 of my ‘investment’ i wouldn’t have time to read on the interweb. i kinda doubt the builder’s loosing much sleep over a mere half million bucks.

  14. AMCFAN

    As in an earlier statement the seller also has a one off Chrysler Plainsman wagon.It being an actual show car for Chrysler with an unusual story surviving the American exodus from Cuba etc. It is true that he who has the money can do what ever. Not everyone with the means would take on such a project such as blending a Corvette and a Chevrolet Nomad. It is a nice car and it should be for the build cost. What is interesting is that he chose to spend and create out of thin air and not to do even a simple cosmetic restoration on a real 1950’s show car. Real wins over recreation any day. With a cost is no object theory anything can be built. The seller has done just that…or is it a fool and his money will soon part??

    • paul

      Fool & his money maybe but a lot of folks on here think that the cost of this was as stated, $400,000, was it that figure in actual cost? Was it that figure including man hours based on say $200 hr.? I am betting that the actual cost was somewhere under 6 figures, say he had a donor Safari that he got, that was wrecked in the nose, Safari’s are less known & cheaper then Nomads,but are nearly identical, say he got it for under 10g’s, as a past owner of an Auto body shop I can bet if he had a spare engine laying around & that Camaro front suspension he picked up used in a junk yard, he could do all that for under $100,000, know doubt, the group is very talented & should be paid for their time. The question is how much will they get for their time? & I’m just throwing this out there.

  15. FRED

    WHAT PAUL SAID AND DID SO WELL SAYING WHAT HE SAID I AGREE PAUL SAID IT VERY WELL. NICE JOB ON WHAT YOU SAID SO WELL PAUL.

  16. MadHungarian

    There is/was a company making a limited number of fiberglass re-creations either as a body only kit or a complete car:

    http://www.superior54.com/

    The Superior kit has some issues of its own, including the lack of vent windows and the absence of all Chevy emblems (trademark licensing issue I am sure), but the proportions of the greenhouse seem a little better.

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