Car Collector Chronicles
Volume III, Issue 11 R3rd Anniversary Edition November 2010

 Car Collecting Today  Classic Rides  Reports From the Field
 Oldsmobile (1897-2004)  Cadillac (1902- )  Allanté (1987-1993)

This Day in Time
With this issue, CCC® embarks on its third year of publication! It is a bit of a milestone, IMHO. I had no idea how long the venture would continue when I started out in November of 2008. I am pleased to report that over this period of time over 11,500 readers have perused an edition of CCC®! I find that number absolutely astounding, given the “cottage industry” nature of the operation. There are negatives too, of equal note. Even though we are going into year 3, I have yet to hear from you. Yes, there have been a few questions, from folks spread out far and wide (New Zealand, France, Great Britain and, of course, the U.S. But there has been little-to-no comment, suggestions or contributions from you, the readers. The other misgiving is the lack of any communication from lady car collectors. We know you are out there! You either are into the hobby in your own right, or suffer with your mate’s obsession for old rides. If this describes you, CCC® really wants your input! I do not feel that the car collecting avocation is a “good ol’ boy club,” or that it should be. It would benefit all of us to learn about the female perspective of the hobby. Who among you is willing to stand up and be counted? Let us hear from you! NOVEMBER AUTOMOTIVE HISTORY DATES OF IMPORT: 11/5/1863 - James Packard born in Warren, OH. 11/28/1895, - First American auto race. Six vehicles, 54 miles -Chicago to Evanston and backthrough the snow. J. Frank Duryea won; 10 hours at an avg. speed of 7.3 mph! 11/3/1900 - 1st auto show in the U.S. at NYC’s Madison Sq. Garden. 11/10/1903 - Mary Anderson patents windshield wiper. 11/20/1923 - Garrett Morgan patents three-position traffic signal. Nov. 2008 - CCC® begins publication

 Corvair (1960-1969)


This Day in Time


GDYNets On the Web The El Morocco



1956 El Morocco (Photos) 1957 El Morocco (Photos) Coming Next Issue EMAIL:


GDYNets on the Web



Dave’s Den http://GDYNets.WEBNG.com Saved 62 http://www.freewebs.com/ jeandaveyaros The Gray Lady - 55 Cad de Ville Car Collector Chronicles -


A website devoted to a myriad of interests. Foremost is extensive information on the “Steel City” of Gary, IN. There are also offerings on steel making, U.S. Steel-Gary Works, U.S. Marine Corps, M14 assault rifle, of course Oldsmobile, and the tragic story of the murder of Gary, IN Police Lt. Geo. Yaros.

SAVED 62: A website devoted

to our 1962 Oldsmobile Dynamic 88 convertible. The site also has a lot of information on Oldsmobiles and its founder, Ransom Eli Olds. THE GRAY LADY: This website features our 1955 Cadillac Coupé de Ville and Caddy information.

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Last month we had an in-depth presentation on a rare Chrysler Corp. related vehicle, the Dual-Ghia. This month, we shall take a similar look at a GM related vehicle, the El Morocco. The relationship to GM? A logical question. The answer is, the vehicle is based on a Chevrolet chassis, drive train, body and interior. Who made the El Morocco, when and why? This article shall attempt to answer those questions. “The El Morocco was the brain child of one Reuben Allender. ... [It] resulted from his love for Cadillacs. He wanted everyone to be able to afford one.” The El Morocco was the brain child of one Reuben Allender. Allender was a Toronto, Ontario transplant who made his money in the purchase and resale of textile surpluses. At one time he actually bought surplus parachutes and resold them back to the U.S. government at a handsome profit, causing both a furor and senate investigation. The El Morocco resulted from his love for Cadillacs. He wanted everyone to be able to afford one. Enter the El Morocco, or should one say Chevrolac, Cadillet or Cadvy? Like the Dual-Ghia, the El Morocco was short lived. It was available only for the 1956 and 1957 model years. Allender purchased factory produced Chevy’s from Detroit’s Don McCullough Chevrolet at $50 over cost. He then proceeded to modify them in his own Detroit facility to add Cadillac styling cues, such as fins, dagmars, etc. Robert Thompson, an experienced tool & die maker who started working for Allender in 1955, was not only in charge of the project, but also designed and engineered both the ‘56 and ‘57 editions of the El Morocco. Cyril Olbrich, an experienced fiberglass fabricator, was also hired to manufacture and install the car’s unique fiberglass components. Let us say, the working conditions were not the best. Vehicle modification took place on the second floor of the shop. Electricity was supplied to the second floor by, believe it or not, an extension cord! For ’56, Caddy style fins, made out of fiberglass were bolted to the rear fenders. 55 Dodge tail lights, resembling what Cadillac actually used on the Biarritz model were incorporated into the El Morocco design. Below the tail light was a dummy exhaust port. The front end received dagmars fabricated out of 1937 Dodge headlight buckets. One could purchase the 1956 El Morocco for a mere $850.00 over

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the price of the actual new Chevy Bel Air, from which the El Morocco had its genesis. While actual production figures are more than hard to come by, it is certain that no more than 21 vehicles were produced by Allender in 1956. For 1957, a much finer, and in my opinion better looking, product was produced. Instead of starting with the Bel Air, Allender made use of 210’s for his base hardtop vehicle. He had no choice but to continue to use the Bel Air for the convertible model. As the resident fiberglass tech had left the company, the ‘57 fins were fabricated out of metal. The hood was shaved and filled. Any body filler required was of the type then prevailing in the industry, lead. This year, the fin incorporated a ‘56 Plymouth tail light. For wheel covers, the car sported Olds Fiesta clone hub caps. These same wheel covers were able to be purchased mail order from Chicago’s J. C. Whitney Co. For ‘57, Allender kept the price the same. Chevy however, had raised its prices. That meant Allender paid a higher price to acquire the stock vehicle. It also meant he made even less of a profit on each car. The fact is, he made no profit from this venture, ever. Total 1957 production is believed to have been 16 cars. Even if there was a profit to be had, there were not enough cars produced to yield a significant income. For both model years, about the only available option was a continental kit. That option added another $150 to the purchase price. Today, seven of the original thirty-some cars thought to have been produced are known to exist. Of these, for 1956 only a single example remains. Interestingly, Cadillac never gave Allender the time of day, in terms of concern. He, obviously, was not perceived as a threat to the marque that prided itself on being the “Standard of the World.” Of equal note is the fact that one day an individual showed up at Allender’s place of business, asking to see an actual El Morocco. It was only after the fact that Allender learned the individual was then Pontiac exec, John Z. DeLorean. Allender’s biggest problem was that he had little-to-no means of marketing his car. Chevrolet was not going to sell his vehicles. He had no dealer distributorship of his own. If you wanted one of his cars, you had to come to Detroit to buy one. Now, let’s turn the page and take a look at Allender’s creations: “Today, seven of the original thirty-some cars thought to have been produced are known to exist.”

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1956 - Preceding Page: Note the different tail light treatments. 1957 - Only the upper tail lights were functional. Both the front and rear bumper sport dagmars. The Olds Fiesta clone wheel covers came with the car from the manufacturer. All years had stock Chevrolet interiors.

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Ok, I have had my say for this month. Now it is your turn! I invite/encourage submission of your comments, opinions and contributions, and ask that you help spread the word about our pub. Everything sent shall indeed be reviewed by me. Submissions should be sent to CCC® at: OldsD88@gmail.com. Do feel free to rattle my tree … .



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