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Posted By: David Holcombe
Posted On: Friday January 11, 2019 at 9:37 AM
Does anyone remember the Muntz Jet? (PICs)

In the 1940s Earl "Manman" Muntz built his California fortune on sales, especially in the new field of television. Then he saw the hot rod being produced by Frank Curtis and had to have one.

Kurtis was over his head financially with a new design, and Muntz found himself the owner of an automobile production company, albeit a small one. So in 1951 Muntz lengthened the new body into a four passenger version and started producing them, including a new Cadillac V8 engine.

He moved the plant to Evanston, Illinois, and changed the engine to the flat head Lincoln V8, which he later upgraded as Lincoln did. The Muntz Jet sold for more than the Packard or Cadillac convertibles, but the Jet's roof had to be lifted off (it was heavy!) and left at home if the owner wanted open touring.

Muntz later said he produced maybe 394 before closing his plant in 1954, and it would be four more years before Ford's 4-passenger Thunderbird would reach for the same market. There were some variations in the Jets built, including different windshields and even a few folding tops. There were also changes made by owners. Today the Muntz Jet shows up at a auto shows now and then, and few recognize it.

(PS- I just ordered the Brooklin 1:43 version. Whee!)

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Message thread:

Does anyone remember the Muntz Jet? (PICs) by David Holcombe #40254
Yes I sure do. I remember a couple of them in San Diego back in the 60's by Dick Johnson #40254.1
I have the Brooklin both top up and top down versions. (EOM) by Bob Jackman #40254.2
If I remember correctly, the top up is fairly scarce. (EOM) by John Kuvakas #40254.2.1Moderator
John I don't know how scarce the top up model might be. Since it was issued after the top by Bob Jackman #40254.2.1.1
The model didnt sell too well JK. Nigel made the hardtop.. by John Roberts #40254.2.1.2
These are nice. (EOM) by John Bono #40254.3
I never knew they existed until Brooklin made it. I see why it failed tho. (EOM) by Jack Dodds #40254.4
Some years back Collectable Automobile magazine included a feature article that by Bruce Gibbins #40254.4.1
Very cool cars. Madman Muntz also made the first 4-track tape players. I had one in my '64 Chevy by Frank Kocour #40254.5
Oh...right. I never made the connection. (EOM) by Jack Dodds #40254.5.1

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