Rare car latest addition to museum collection

NORWICH – The latest addition to the new Nifty Fifties exhibit at the Northeast Classic Car Museum is a rare 1954 Kaiser-Darrin sports car, on loan from Norm Oliver of Niagara Falls. One of only 435 sold by Kaiser in 1954, the radical little two-seater has a fiberglass body, with sliding doors that disappear into the front fenders, a three-position convertible top, and a grille that says, “I want to kiss you!”

Designed by Howard “Dutch” Darrin, who had designed the other beautiful Kaiser cars beginning in 1951, the Kaiser-Darrin was one of several limited-production sports cars that took advantage of the light weight of the new fiberglass material (Chevrolet made one too). The fiberglass body permitted some design elements that would have been difficult using steel, and was produced under contract by Glasspar, a pioneer in the use of fiberglass.

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