Earl 'Madman' Muntz was an extremely successful used car salesman in California. The Jet was Muntz's answer to the sports cars that were coming onto the scene in the early 1950s-cars like the Kaiser Darrin, the Hudson Italia, the Chevrolet Corvette and the Nash Healey, Muntz met with famous race car builder Frank Kurtis and purchased the rights to produce a Kurtis road car. Muntz stretched the chassis and created a 4-seat sports car. This car is a custom version built by Joe Bailon for bandleader Freddy Martin. Many body modifications were made, changing nearly every panel, and a new Corvette V8 engine was installed. The changes, which were completed in 1955, make this particular Muntz Jet unique.
Indy car builder Frank Kurtis produced 36 sports cars in 1949. Earl 'Madman' Muntz, of TV fame, bought the tooling and manufacturing rights from Kurtis and began producing Muntz cars. Costing more than $5,500, fewer than 300 were produced. All were convertibles, with removable 'Carson' tops. Band leader Freddy Martin bought this Muntz in 1952. The flathead Lincoln V8 took it to 60 mph in under nine seconds, apparently not quickly enough for Martin, who commissioned Joe Bailon to restyle the car and install a V8 engine. He retained the maroon vinyl interior. The current owners bought the car in 2004, after it had been in inhospitable storage for 40 years. Joe Bailon vividly recalled the car and was instrumental in its authentic restoration.
In 2009, this Muntz Jet Convertible was offered for sale by Bonhams Auction at the Quail Lodge Resort and Golf Club in Carmel, CA. It was estimated to sell for $150,000 - $175,000. As bidding came to a close, the lot had been sold for the sum of $117,000 inclusive of Buyer's Premium.Also photographed at :