Big Healey Kit Car: 1967 Fiberfab Banshee

With a name like Banshee, it has to be cool – right? That’s my opinion of this rare Fiberfab Banshee, which was meant to emulate the iconic Cobra Daytona coupes, which is a car very few of us are likely to own in true-to-life form. Fiberfab was a pioneer in the kit car space and designed some of the more attractive fiberglass bodies you could buy. It was a smart play, too, targeting owners with rusty British roadsters that still had good pans and drivetrains capable of living on in a swoopy body that looked like a damn Cobra! This example here on eBay is an incomplete project that rides on a disc brake-equipped big Healey frame and is currently bid to $4,155 with the reserve unmet.

Production numbers are believed to be quite low, with some sources saying a dozen or less were ever built. As an added bonus, by using a factory-built convertible body, builders of a Banshee could essentially get a chassis that already accounted for the lack of a roof with additional structural rigidity built-in. Since creating a car like this would require peeling the original body off of the chassis, the factory had already done the hard work of making the structure as sturdy as possible (at least, in theory – I get this isn’t a perfect science.) Thankfully, the custom glass, including that huge rear window, are all with the car, along with the door windows that aren’t pictured here.

Unlike the car upon which it was based, this Banshee has been upgraded handily in the engine compartment with a 283 from a 1967 Chevy Chevelle. The seller believes it has 65,000 genuine miles on it, which would make it a fairly young drivetrain. The seller also notes that despite sitting for the last five years, the Banshee fired right up with some basic start-up prep work (WD40 in the cylinders, fresh gas, starting fluid, boom!) That’s great news for the next owner because this is already a fairly big project to take on and having the drivetrain sorted out is one less headache. The seller notes that the brakes and clutch need work and that it should be transported as a non-running vehicle.

Now, one limiting factor that’s been well documented despite the small number of Banshees made is that they’re a royal pain to get in and out of. The gullwing doors may look terrific, but they’re a pain to keep working and certainly don’t make it any easier to get into or out of. The seller notes he attempted to upgrade the doors with electronic actuators, but that they don’t work all that well. The interior is surprisingly ornate for a kit car, with an actual dash with gauges that didn’t just come out of an air-cooled Volkswagen. It’s always difficult to assign a value to kit cars, especially one as rare as the Banshee. Fiberfabs generally have a loyal following, but that doesn’t always translate to a big sale price. How would you restore this obscure kit car?

Like This? Get Our Daily Email

Comments

  1. bobhess bobhess Member

    Could be a fun project. Being fiberglass it would not be that difficult to covert the doors to conventional configuration. Certainly one of the better looking “kits” around.

    3
  2. jerry z

    Does have the Daytona Cobra vibe going. Door opening looks small to me though. Never dealt with a kit car so getting a title is an unknown for me.

    1
  3. DayDreamBeliever Member

    A 1967-built 283 could be all in by the time it got to 67K miles. We all know that, and should not be lulled into forgetting how far metallurgy and design has brought modern engines into a far more reliable era. Longevity of earlier engines could be decent, if they were fanatically maintained, but might not be.

    As far as the doors go, I’d be thinking that a conversion from gull-wing to scissors-style (aka Lambo doors) might be one option. There is a lot of corrosion showing in some areas, might be pretty crusty underneath. Likely a complete dismantling would be the wisest way forward with this one.

    5
  4. Bernie H.

    Having worked on British vehicles for over 50 years (now retired), I’d be very leery of a big Healey chassis as they are mostly fabricated sheet metal that rusts rapidly, especially in northern climates. The 283 is waaaaaayy over carb’d with that 750 Holley and single plane manifold, unless its been built to turn 6500 and higher. The current $4100 bid is about what she’s worth. In Michigan its tough to title..

    5
  5. Gaspumpchas

    Note the hi tech door openers and hood prop 2×4’s. seriously, looks like a cool project and the seller really seems honest. As Bernie said, I’d be leary of that healey frame, designed for a 6 cyl british car engine and now has a 283 in it, I’d be that would twist up like a pretzel. I’m sure that would haul some serious @$$ with that sbc. Might be a fun project- but being an old grey haired wuss I’d be afraid of getting in an accident – that glass would crumble like a potato chip. Good luck and stay safe!!
    Cheers
    GPC

    5
  6. chipsbe

    Interesting treatment of the tail of this car. At F-Fab this car was designed with a tail having a kamm-style chip or spoiler, so someone has cut and faired in what is seen here. I like the looks, personally. At F-Fab my brother designed this car but the mold-maker changed/re-shaped it so much that many of the bodies sold were returned, claiming, … ” It doesn’t look like the drawing!” And it doesn’t.

    6
  7. Steve Bush Member

    Only a so-so recreation of the Cobra Daytona Coupe. Length to wheelbase ratio is somewhat off, hood/scoop not right and rear spoiler missing. Also the original had conventional doors. If you want a nicer recreation it will cost you a lot more.

    1
  8. Elanguy

    chipsbe, I would love to hear more of your stories about Fiberfab, do you have anything on the web?

    WOrking with Bud Goodwin must have been interesting.

    3
  9. Timothy Phaff Member

    Getting into a project of the unknown, lot’s of cash is a reality. Reinforcing the frame or putting a new one in to accommodate a 427 side oiler would be costly but when done properly what a monster it would be. As far as being in a acident lifes to short to stress that just look out for the other one will prolong anyone life. I would love too turn this into a pavement pounder but I already have a few projects that I’m wasting money on and love it.

    1
  10. Maestro1 Member

    Very sexy design, I agree with those above who said Healy frames are to be looked at carefully. I would save it; put it back together, maybe a 3800 V-6,
    automatic (that’s how old I am) and whatever else the interior and suspension take to make it a nice driver. Then do so.

    1
  11. Paul Y

    Cool little car. I have a beautiful red 69 Jamaican which get’s a crap load of attention everywhere it goes.

    Cheers

    3
  12. chipsbee

    I still have the 1st Jamaican out of the mold, paid $125 due to being offered an employees discount. Mine is a Healey 3000 chassis and power-train, built in 1967. Yes, working with Bud had its ups and downs, for sure entertaining, and loads of stories. and I don’t have anything in print out there. My Dad designed the 1st fiberglass car for Warren (Bud) we were aware of, a big V8 nestled in an MG TC chassis. This might have been the early 50’s.

    3
    • chips

      Thanks for posting the ‘Bonhams’ sight, good to see this car working so hard. It looks very capable and I appreciate all of the effort that went into making our Jamaican a race car. 285 BHP is impressive, as is retaining the Laycock De Normanville O-drive unit. I would have tried hard to further lower the front of this racer.

      1
    • DayDreamBeliever Member

      Neat car!

  13. Paul Y

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=ZXWnuG9XCL
    Hi chips
    This is my Jamaican before a repaint to red.
    Is the designer of the Jamaican still alive as I would like to get a signature plaque for mine. PS I’m in NZ

    • DayDreamBeliever Member

      Paul,
      YouTube says the video is unavailable, might be a locality thing?

    • chipsbee

      Yupp, don’t know how to get us in contact with one another other than posting an eMail, which I’d rather not offer openly to the public. What suggestions might you offer ?

      • Paul Y

        Hi Chips
        My email address is pyaxley@live.com

        Cheers
        Paul

  14. Paul Y
  15. DayDreamBeliever Member

    Sold out at $7701.

    Seems reasonable, if the buyer can do what is needed to finish out the car nicely, I’ll bet it will really move out!

Leave A Comment

RULES: No profanity, politics, or personal attacks. Don't post your car for sale in the comments. Click here to get it featured on the homepage instead.

*

Notify me of new comments via email. Or subscribe without commenting.