It was 71 years ago, in 1949, that the world’s first automotive body made out of a revolutionary new ”wonder material”, glass-reinforced plastic (also known as GRP, fiberglass, or glass fiber) was conceived and made.
The GRP car in question was the Glasspar G2, a fiberglass sports car body created in 1949 by Californian-based Bill Tritt. Based on the chassis of a battered wartime Willys Jeep and fitted with a V8 engine, Tritt conceived the Glasspar G2 for his ex-air force friend Major Ken Brooks. Later, a few were built as complete cars (in limited numbers) but most were offered as a body, or body/chassis kit.
His success did not go unnoticed by the likes of Ford, which had been experimenting with hemp and soya-based products as possible vehicle building materials since the early-1940s, as well as General Motors in the creation of its 1953 Chevrolet Corvette, the world’s first ‘’mass-produced’’ fiberglass-bodied car. But that’s a story for another post.
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