Speedster Replica Suppliers
|Home | Events Calendar | Technical Info | Speedster History | Racing Speedsters | Books etc. | Videos | Useful Suppliers | Weblinks|
Classic Motor Carriages (CMC)
Classic Motor Carriages was founded in the early 1970s to sell DIY car kits. three decades ago. In 1978 wealthy Fort Lauderdale resident George Levin bought the firm and unleashed a marketing blitz. Soon Classic's cars were displayed in airport lobbies from Newark to Seattle. And orders poured in so fast that the company abandoned its modest Hallandale headquarters and moved to the mammoth warehouse on the Palmetto and 27th Avenue. This place was huge; 160,000 square feet of kit car heaven. It had a 45 foot steel tower with a rotating platform that displayed cars.
In the 1970s Automobili Intermeccanica in Santa Ana, California were the largest manufacturer of Speedster Kits but in 1979, Tony Baumgartner bought out Frank Reisner's 50% share of Intermeccanica and sold the Speedster project to Classic Motor Carriages. So CMC became the largest Speedster replica manufacturer selling several hundred before their eventual demise.
In 1983 Classic Motor Carriages bought the ailing Fibrefab organaisation who also made a Speedster replica, and renamed it Fiberfab International. The Fiberfab 356 Speedster replica continued to be made under CMC ownership.
Classic Motor Carriages was forced to close in 1994 after the Florida Attorney General's Office filed suit against it on behalf of 900 of its customers. It agreed to pay $2.5 million in compensation. At the same time as the case was proceeding, a new company, Auto Resolutions, was set up by the owner George Levin to "clean up the Classic mess and resolve outstanding customer complaints". Meanwhile the case continued wending its way through the courts until 1999, when the company was ordered to pay nearly three million dollars in restitution and fines for fraudulent business practices.
Around the same time, Auto Resolutions quietly began selling cars under the brand name 'Street Beasts'. Sales were sluggish the first few years but began to pick up so that Bob Southern, Head of Sales claimed in 2004 that Street Beast had become the largest supplier of kit cars in the USA. However, complaints about its products continued and Street Beasts closed its business in 2010 and auctioned off its plant, moulds, and machinery. In 2011 the moulds for the Speedster were for sale on eBay.
click on any image to enlarge back to A-Z index
CMC claimed to be the first Replica supplier to offer wind-up windows
and they introduced the 'love-it or hate-it' 359 kit based on a similar chassis arrangement to the Speedster