The World’s Smoothest-Looking Classic Car: A Looking Back on the 1948 Norman Timbs Buick Streamliner

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Mechanical engineer Norman E. Timbs created this dramatic streamliner in the 1940s which in many ways was the ultimate American hot rod. He designed and fabricated much of the project himself which included a custom aluminum body and steel chassis.

The car was based around a 1947 Buick “Super 8” engine which powered the 2200 lb car to 120 mph. The main chassis was built up from five-inch steel tubes which kicked up over the rear axle. To offer a smooth ride, a modified 1947 Ford suspension was utilized.

Road & Track reported that it took Mr Timbs 2 1/2 years to create the car at a cost of $10,000 USD. The body was created entirely in aluminum by Emil Diedt for $8,000 alone. The shape was formed by hand over a traditional wooden buck.

At first the Streamliner was only used on the show circuit until Jim Davis of California bought it in 1952. He used it in and around Manhattan Beach, California and let Motor Life photograph it for a feature article.

The car was discovered in the desert pretty much intact in 2002. It was bought at auction and restored by Dave Crouse at Custom Auto, Inc. in Loveland, Colorado for owners Gary & Diane Cerveny of Malibu, California. After its “complete and exacting” restoration, it debuted at the 2010 Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance in a class reserved for Motor Trend Cover Cars. (Supercars.net)

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