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1938 Phantom Corsair news, pictures, specifications, and information

Coachwork: Bohman & Schwartz
 
Rust Heinz, heir to the Heinz 57 ketchup fortune, was a young designer who had the means to put into reality his car of tomorrow, better known as the Phantom Corsair. Based on a 1936 Cord Westchester Sedan with a Granatelli modified 192 horsepower supercharged Cord motor, the body was constructed by Maurice Schwartz of Bohman & Schwartz Body Company. Designed in a wind tunnel, the radical fastback body incorporates modern items such as a climate control system and crash padded dash. It starred in the 1938 movie The Young at Heart where it was called the 'Flying Wombat.' Originally intended to be produced in limited numbers for $12,500, the project ended with Heinz' untimely death in 1939.
The Phantom Corsair was designed by Rust Heinz of the Heinz 57 Ketchup fame, and Maurice Schwartz of Pasadena, California. Schwartz was one of the primary individuals in the Bohman & Schwartz Coachbuilding Company. The resulting design was amazing, aerodynamic and certainly bred from unconventional thinking. Its smooth surface was void of running boards and separate fenders allowing for the curvaceous body to gracefully flow undisturbed from front to back.

The chassis was from a Cord 810 and large enough to seat six individuals. To propel this rather large vehicle, a Lycoming V8 engine was fitted that displaced 289 cubic-inches and provided 190 horsepower allowing the Phantom to reach 115 miles per hour. Drum brakes on all four corners were necessary to slow the vehicle and keep it in the drivers control.

This was meant as a production vehicle. Heinz had hoped to sell these for $12,500, which was a very large fortune to most individuals at the time. Unfortunately, Heinz passed away in 1938 and the plans for production died with him. Only one example was ever produced.

This vehicle has played a starring role in the motion picture 'The Young at Heart.'

By Daniel Vaughan | Oct 2007

Phantom Corsair Making Rare Trip Out of Museum for Amelia 2009

California Coachbuilder Bohman & Schwartz's Creation Labeled Both Monstrosity & Marvel

The Phantom Corsair, a one-of-kind look at the future of auto design penned in the late thirties by Rust Heinz of the H.J. Heinz family food empire, will make its way to the 14th annual Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance, March 13-15, 2009. The vehicle will be on display courtesy of the National Automobile Museum (The Harrah Collection) in Reno, Nevada.

'There are certain what I like to call ‘once-in-a-lifetime' designs and the Phantom Corsair easily falls into that category,' says Bill Warner, founder & co-chairman of the Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance. 'When this car came out of Bohman & Schwartz, it was called outrageous and futuristic at the same time. It's a 70-year-old design and still generates a buzz wherever it goes, and still defies description today; just as it did when it rolled out of their Pasadena shop in 1938.'

Not Another One Like It In The World
The Phantom Corsair was ahead of its time and displayed a number of innovative design queues. The streamlined look from bumper to bumper gave the Phantom Corsair a distinct aerodynamic advantage enabling the car to reach nearly 120 m.p.h., which was impressive for a car its size back in 1938. There were several never-seen-before features in the car such as hydraulic impact bumpers, covered driving lights, climate control system, and
interior crash padding. After its stint at the 1939 World's Fair, it moved on to a new career in Hollywood as the mysteriously sinister 'Flying Wombat,' in the David O. Selznick production, 'The Young in Heart,' which starred screen legend Douglas Fairbanks, Jr.

Bohman & Schwartz built the Phantom Corsair for an estimated $25,000, and Heinz had plans to build a limited number for about $12,500 per car, but his untimely death shortly after its completion ended any production plans. The vehicle was later sold to the famous comedian Herb Shriner and was displayed for a time at the Silver Springs (Florida) Museum before ending up in the hands of famed collector William Harrah, who restored the car to its
original configuration and displayed it as a showcase car in his vast collection. Bohman & Schwartz performed work for many of Hollywood's elite and customized a number of makes, including Duesenberg, Cadillac, and LaSalle. They remained active until ceasing operations in the early sixties.

'There will never be another one like it,' Warner says of the Phantom Corsair. 'I've often wondered what it would be like to drive that car around town; imagine the looks you would get. It's going to really surprise people when it appears on the show field and it will probably be one of the most photographed cars throughout the day.'

Source - Amelia Island Concours
OFFENHAUSER HEROES AND MERCHANTS OF SPEED SEMINARS OFFER FANS A BACKSTAGE PASS TO AMERICAN MOTORSPORT
A pair ofthe Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance's popular seminars will offer 'backstage passes' to the history and the business of American motorsport. On Friday March 7, 2014 the celebration of Offenhauser-powered vehicles will begin in the Talbot Ballroom of the Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island at 3:00 PM with the Great Offy Drivers and David Hobbs Seminar. Amelia's seminars are famous for their star power. On Friday Indy 500 winners Johnny Rutherford, Parnelli Jones and Al and Bo...[Read more...]
'CARS AND COFFEE AT THE CONCOURS' SHOW SATURDAY AT THE AMELIA
The latest must-see event at the Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance is the duPont REGISTRY CARS & COFFEE AT THE CONCOURS. The Saturday morning event (3/9/13) sponsored by Heacock Classic Car Insurance is scheduled from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm on the 18th fairway of the Golf Club at the Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island. 'From the moment we created 'The Amelia' there's been a demand to expand the scope of the show even further,' said Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance founder and Chairman Bill Warner. 'Th...[Read more...]
Edsel Ford's Restored 1934 Model 40 Special Speedster Returns to Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance
It has been 13 years since Edsel Ford's 1934 Model 40 Special Speedster first made headlines when it rolled onto the field at the Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance. The elegant roadster, which was rediscovered in 1999 by the show's founder and Chairman Bill Warner, will return again on Sunday, March 11 to the 17 the annual Concours; this time as part of the collection of the historic Edsel Eleanor Ford House (Ford House) and completely restored to its timeless elegance. The Speedster's ...[Read more...]
GALA NIGHT AT THE MUSEUM CELEBRATES AUTOMOBILE HISTORY
 Calling all motoring enthusiasts! RM Auctions, the Antique Automobile Club of America (AACA) and the AACA Museum will turn back the clock this October for their much-anticipated, fifties-inspired Night at the Museum fundraising gala in Hershey, Pennsylvania – the chocolate capital of America. Following in the footsteps of last year's sell out event, the October 8th charity gala at Hershey's AACA Museum will be an engaging celebration of the automobile and the collecting hobby. Dedicated to...[Read more...]
New York-to-Paris-Winning Thomas Flyer coming to Amelia for 100th Anniversary of its Historic Victory
 The Thomas Flyer automobile that won the historic New York-to-Paris 'Great Race' in 1908 will come to the Florida coast for the 13th annual Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance, March 7-9, 2008. Contested 100 years ago, the torturous race covered the width of the United States before stopping at points in Alaska, Japan, Siberia, and Berlin before ending in Paris. It has never been run again. With the automobile barely a decade old, the thought of an around-the-globe race was unheard of at th...[Read more...]


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