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						Bennett Coachworks Projects 9

Bennett Coachworks LLC has been involve in some rare rides.

By Robert Weiss

In a career that spans over 38 years Bob Bennett and Bennett Coachworks LLC have played a major role in some really rare and revered rides.

For instance, he did the complete restoration of the Ferrari 410 Super Fast on his own, including the manufacture of rare and unobtainable parts. This is the one-off darling of the 1956 Paris Auto Show is now worth millions of dollars. It recently made another appearance at Pebble Beach, still carrying his original restoration work some 30 years after the fact.

There are many other early, rare Ferraris to his credit: A 250LM, 250GT Berlinetta Lusso, 250 PF Cabriolet, 275 GTB4, 365 GTB4, and so on. There have been a string of Iso Grifos, too, including another Paris Auto Show car, the 1962 Iso prototype A3L, as well as a one of seven Series 2 coupe, that he performed automotive archeology on to reconstruct the chassis. (His plans from this project are now used by other restorers as well).

Adding to his list of projects are Lamborghinis, Maseratis,  and a myriad number of Cobras and Cobra replicars. And also Corvettes, hot rods, customs, Pro-Street, Pro Touring and race cars. Not to mention antiques and classics like the Talbot Lago, Hudson and Pierce Arrow. Even a rat rod made from a ’49 International Harvester Fire Truck, historically significant cars  like the Shelby Cobra, chassis number CSX3003, one of five 427 Cobras chosen for homologation by the FIA.

Bob was in-house research and development tech for the first Cobra replica company, Arntz Engineering, of San Francisco, CA. Bob was the first person to ever show a Cobra replica at the prestigious SAAC (Shelby American Automobile Club) Convention, with its introduction coming at the 1982 SAAC Convention in Dearborn, MI.

He went on to prototype the Excalibur Cobra replica, including building the prototype, producing the tooling and fixtures and first 10 sets of steel, all singlehandedly.

Bennett was also tapped by Concept Coach Builders, Milwaukee, WI, to be Director of Operations for the company’s Rolls Royce limousine series, stretching Rolls Royce Silver Shadows and Silver Spurs.

As a driver, and a veteran of a variety of series and classifications, garnering track records and class championships, Bob Bennett has developed a unique understanding of power, performance and handling. This particular skill has given his firm a well-deserved reputation for building winning race cars, with a particular strength in the Datsun and Nissan,“Z” car arena.

In the natural progression of an industry artist of Bob’s stature, he has released a car of his own design: The Bennett ZX-1, a radically transformed Corvette that was prototyped, developed, production tooled and sold exclusively by Bennett Coachworks LLC. Beyond the basic body conversion, Bennett’s ZX-1 offers an array of performance and appearance enhancements. Designed for both high performance and stunning visual excitement, the ZX-1’s main component is a totally redesigned body built to fit any C6 Corvette chassis. Altogether, Bennett can cite an impressive automotive resume.


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