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Retromobile Sighting


Reader Harit T was at Retromobile this last February and spotted this oddity. He has been a car guy all his life, but had never seen anything like this. It was held together with duct tape, but he was impressed nonetheless. If you have followed the site for very long, we bet you can identify it quickly. Go ahead and take a shot. Thanks for the submission Harit!


This one has obviously undergone some modifications and we bet it is full of good stories. Retromobile takes place in Paris, but are those California black plates peeking out under there? Does anyone know more about this car and why it was over in Europe? Retromobile is one heck of car show with thousands of spectators in attendance each year, so digging up some info on this one shouldn’t be too difficult.


  1. Don Andreina

    Looks like the woodill with a tacked-on roof.

    Like 1
  2. Jim-Bob

    It looks to be some sort of late 50’s to mid 60’s kit car based off a 1953 or 54 Buick. At leas that’s what the headlight bezels and wire wheels make me think of. Other than that, I’ve got nothing.

    Like 0

    really nice lines for a bitsa – sexy thayng. doubtless will go for a fortune at retromobile…..

    Like 0
  4. Mike Burnett

    Looks like an early Bristol front end with Graber headlights, but the rear end has me puzzled.

    Like 0
  5. David

    Darian coupe??..

    Like 0
    • David

      nope, Woodil………what movie used a roadster version for a race car?

      Like 0
    • Brian

      I agree, it looks like it was home made decades ago with parts grabed from the Kaiser row at the scrap yard. I guess if it is being held together with duct tapes, it wasn’t put together in the 50’s, duct tapes is good, but not THAT good!

      Like 0
  6. Aktifspeed

    The race car from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang?

    Like 0
  7. Don

    It’s a Woodill Wildfire, & was featured in the 1954 movie Johnny Dark, starring Tony Curtis.

    Like 0
  8. Mark E

    I’m with Dan…looks like a Woodhill Wildfire with some kind of a strange roof stuck on top…

    Like 0
  9. lucy

    Kaiser-Darrin, fiberglass body made in Brazil, maybe 1954.

    Like 0
  10. Dave @ OldSchool

    .. roof is LaDawri Daytona hardtop and windshield is inverted GM pickup…we have one here at the shop.. The Wildfire body is pretty much stock

    Like 0
  11. PaulRR

    Yep, def a Woodill – IMCDB has three movies featuring Woodills…

    The Retromobile photos threw me at first as the body looked rusty at first glance! Interesting curved screen and awkward looking hardtop too.

    Like 0
  12. Other Perry

    Looks like the rear window from a early vette being used for front glass. Hideous.

    Like 0
  13. craig

    What a shame! Nice Woodill Wildfire. Chopped up and modified. In the right hands (mine) it could be brought back to the beauty it once was.

    Like 0
  14. Gerald Luck

    Is there a view of it from the back/rear ? I’d like to see that plus a look at the interior too if possible.

    Like 0
  15. Shane

    1954 Woodill Wildfire is my guess due to the headlight bezels.

    Like 0
  16. Robert J

    It’s a Woodhill WIldfire. I must be a serious car nut…

    Like 0
  17. Dave @ OldSchool

    here is a Woodill Wildfire for sale on ebay….. they were made in California..mid-late 50’s

    Also… There is a LaDawri on our shop website..if you click on it, you will see the windshield and hardtop that was grafted onto this Wildfire. The windshield is a GM pickup that is upside down.


    Like 0
  18. Dave @ OldSchool

    the roof looks weird on this car, because the rear deck is higher than the LaDawri it was designed for.

    Like 0
  19. jeff6599

    I don’t think that windshield is downside up. If it was, try to imagine the vertical angle to the cowl , AND the severe angle the vent windows would have had. Print the photo and rotate it. See what I mean? However absolutely no doubt that it is a Woodill Wildfire body with 53/4 Buick Headlamp doors.

    Like 0
  20. Jesse Mortensen Jesse Staff

    I’m surprised more people didn’t remember the one we just featured: http://barnfinds.com/johnny-darks-woodill-wildfire/

    Like 0
  21. Roger

    From the beginning it must have been a Woodill Wildfire.

    Like 0
  22. MikeW

    It’s a Glasspar G2, very close to the Woodill with custom Buick head lights molded in. The LaDawri is close but a different car.

    Like 0
  23. Dave @ OldSchool

    @MikeW … I’ve been restoring Glasspars, Wildfires, LaDawris, Devins, Kellisons, Fiberfabs, and other 50’s and early 60’s fiberglass cars ‘forever’. That is not a Glasspar G2… and a G2 looks NOTHING like a boxy Wildfire..it looks more like a 120 Jag…..

    I just recently sold a Woodill Wildfire, and have both a Glasspar G2 roadster and a LaDawri daytona with the hardtop , at the shop now.

    It’s only the roof that is LaDawri ,, and the upside down GM pickup windshield is what the LaDawri used, and the roof is designed to fit that windshield.


    Like 0
  24. Dolphin Member

    Of all the car shows I have never been to, Retromobile in France is at the top of the list because of the large size interesting variety. This micro-manufactured US car is one example of the of the kind of variety I would expect there. Second would be Beaulieu in the UK.

    Like 0
  25. z1rider

    Which GM pickup? That windshield looks to short. Were they cut down?

    Like 0
  26. Tom Gibbs

    G 2 was a car while G 3 was a speedboat ? Windshield looks like rear window out of 53 – 4 Stude

    Like 0
  27. Dave @ OldSchool

    55-58 Chev 1/2 ton …read the LaDawri Manual and Specs

    It’s not cut down, it uses the factory rubber and stainless trim too…….. it just looks short because of the bad angel it is installed at… it looks correct on a LaDawri

    http://www.race-cardrivers.com/shop.htm 1959 Ladawri Daytona

    Like 0
  28. Dave @ OldSchool

    Nothing unusual this week…she finished about where she should……

    Gibbs car..??? she’s got a.Hendricks car .. neither makes a difference when you are in a field that you don’t belong in..

    She should go to trucks for a couple years and learn to WIN …then come back, if she can finish in the top 5 there, most of the time…even some of the time would be ok

    As it is, she makes lady drivers look bad…and I don’t mean good. There are some good gals out there that can r a c e !

    GoDaddy will be gone soon anyway…

    Like 0
  29. Dave @ OldSchool

    ..Sorry for the error posting about our world famous GoDaddy girl . , it was meant for Fox Sports.

    I have no clue how I did that……………… .
    I asked Jesse to remove it , but I guess he is busy moving.

    Dave Perry

    Like 0
  30. Don

    That is a 54 Woodill Wildfire. And that is 53 Buick head lamps. I own a 54 Wildfire with the 53 Buick head lamps. I too would like to se the back and interior. I have been researching Woodill Wildfires for 40+ years

    Like 0
  31. Jose

    Glasspar G-2

    Like 0
  32. m

    Several right and wrong guesses! It’s a series 2 Woodhill Wildfire. The windshield could be the rear window from a Studebaker. My father was Bill Tritt who designed all the Glasspar autos (and boats up to 1960, including the series I Woodhill and I’m quite familiar with this frequently hashed over subject. As suggested, check out the forgottenfiberglass website for pictures, which will make believers of even you skeptics. BTW, thw first Wildfires were designed by my dad as modified G2’s, while the later version was something else. The G2 IS a car and the G3 IS a boat.

    Matt Tritt

    Like 0
  33. sean

    looks like a Darin, I heard they were attempting to put a hard top on one in cali

    Like 0

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