Daimler DS420 Converted cars

 

  logo (1.7kB)
 
Jaguar mockup (13kB)  

From the very first days, the classic lines of the DS420 have inspired people to unleash their own creativity and to design distinctively different variations. Already before the first launch, VandenPlas and Jaguar came up with a mock-up study for a shortened four-door saloon version.

Almost 25 years later, Brian Long wrote an article in the Jaguar Quarterly journal (Summer 1991) on plans to revive this design. Click here to read. Does anybody know what happened to this project?

 

Along the same lines, Tony Porter of Melbourne, Australia, came up with a study for a two-door version of the DS420, scaled back to the dimensions of the original 420G floorpan. As with the Jaguar mock-up, this project never left his initial brainstorming phase... But Bob Boston in Atlanta USA took up the challenge and produced a really handsome car!

  Porter-1 mockup (11kB)   Porter-2 mockup (11kB)
 
 
 
Inimitable (23kB)    the Inimitable Limo

24" longer than long....
Jill Handford, of Southfields, London, had this DS420 (FIL4118) stretched by 24 inches, and converted the interior to the "american" limousine style, with J-shaped bench, high-tech image and sound equipment, etcetera.

This car was offered for sale at H&H Classic Auctions in May 2006, but it did not sell. It was offered for sale on eBay in August 2006, and eventually sold by R&J Cars.

 
 
 
InTheSun  

On May 2nd, 2002, the BBC broadcast an episode of its "Panic Mechanics" series. Two teams competed to convert two abandoned DS420 hearses into dune buggies. And they became very handsome buggies indeed!

Photos: John Lakey.

 
Race0   Race2   Race3
 
The design of the green buggy "Freed Spirit" was from Edd China, who specialises in all kinds of spectacular conversions, such as a street-legal sofa, a motorised bathroom, and many more. The yellow car was designed by Paul Burnham of Burnham Autos.   Build   Crushed
 
 
Franay Bentley-like   Franay Bentley-like  

An American conversion in Art Deco style: the so called "Franay Bentley" inspired Nate Seifert from Utah, USA, to convert his DS420 in similar style. In the late thirties of the last century this Art Deco design style of (mainly) French "carrossiers" such as Franay, Figoni et Falaschi and Saoutchik made a big impact on wealthy customers in France and in the USA alike. Efforts to revive this style after WWII, e.g. with an exhibition in Paris in 1947 for which the Franay Bentley was conceived, did not last long.

Starting from a 1971 DS420 limousine, Nate Seifert extended the tip of the bonnet with 6 inches, and lowered the front bumper with the same amount. Then the front wings were shaped and mounted, which required widening the bumpers as well. Four large wheel covers completed the design; the two rear ones nicely blending in with the flowing body lines. The project took 7 years to complete: build, tear down, redo.....

The original engine was replaced with a Chevrolet 350 and corresponding transmission. To cope with the lowered panels and the increased weight an airbag suspension was added.

Photos contributed in 2012. Click an image to enlarge.

Franay Bentley-like   Franay Bentley-like  
 
 
 

Mr. Vaćlav Kafka from Prague (Czech Republic) converted a DS420 into a 2-door cabrio. This was done in his own workshop.

Some photos shown here were kindly provided by Mr. Kafka, others were taken from the auction webpage when the car was offered for sale in May 2015.

V.Kafka, Prague V.Kafka, Prague
V.Kafka, Prague V.Kafka, Prague V.Kafka, Prague V.Kafka, Prague
V.Kafka, Prague V.Kafka, Prague V.Kafka, Prague V.Kafka, Prague
 
 
 

Bob Boston from Atlanta, Georgia, USA converted a DS420 hearse to a flowercar in the style of the sumptuous gangster funerals in Chicago in the 30's of the last century. Bob owns a company that converts people carrier vans for use by handicapped people, and thus is a professional car converter. It shows...

The little "bubble car" on the back is another icon from his collection: a 1965 Peel Trident, made on the Isle of Man. Only 80 made.

The DS420 landaulette on the photo is also part of his collection of approx. half a dozen superb DS420 cars that is shown on his Cars&Owners page.

Bob sold the car in June 2010. A few month later, the new owner offered it for sale on eBay.

flowercar flowercar
flowercar flowercar flowercar flowercar
 
 

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