By Dean Larson

Photos: Seller, eBay

In late 1952, a pair of recent college grads in California created a trendsetting custom sports car body in fiberglass. Inspired by European designs like the Jaguar XK120 and the BMW 328 Mille Miglia Buegelfalte Roadster, William “Doc” Boyce-Smith and Hugh Jorgensen created a thoroughly unique roadster, one of a whole new breed of American sports car. A host of fiberglass body manufacturers, kit car companies and even fiberglass production cars would thrive on the opportunities created by companies like Victress in the 1950s.

Victress produced several models during its 9 to 10 year stint in the business of composite car bodies, all of which lived on through the LaDawri company after Victress sold its molds in 1961. But perhaps the most attractive and significant design was its first — the Victress S1.

The S1 took most of its inspiration from the BMW 328 Mille Miglia Buegelfalte Roadster, and the resemblance is quite clear in the swooping front fenders and lengthily tail section. Bodies were often mounted on late ’30s Ford frames and running gear, with V8 engines coming from just about every source.

While the S1 roadster hasn’t been available since 1965, this Victress body on eBay presents a unique opportunity to bag an unspoiled Victress roadster.

The current owner of the S1 body purchased it in the late 1970s, and insists that the body has never been painted or mounted on a frame. The glass looks to be in great condition without any obvious blemishes, which is impressive considering its 60-plus year hibernation. The seller states that he never received a hood for the car, but he believes a reproduction part is available.

The options are literally endless with this classic body, but if I were its next owner, here’s what I’d do. I’d source a late ’30s Ford chassis and running gear to get the period-correct feel and handling. I don’t think I could resist the urge to install an early Chrysler FirePower Hemi, probably a 354, and find a manual transmission as well. Get it rolling on a set of Ford Wide-Five wheels with vintage rubber (think of the Mameco-Ardun Glasspar), and I think you’d have a drivable classic, at home at a local car show or the Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance.

The seller has placed a minimum bid of $10,000 on the auction here on eBay.