The Kellison J-4 R was the brainchild of Jim Kellison, a veteran fighter pilot of the Korean War. After studying engineering at UCLA, he founded Kellison Engineering, which became one of the premier manufacturers of Fiberglass cars in the United States.
The J-4 was his first production car and would be offered in turn key form for $6,700, more than $2000 over the price of a new Corvette
This particular Kellison was purchased new by SCCA executive director Don Rodimer. He would keep the car until his death, at which time it would pass to well-known racer and tour organizer, Rich Taylor, in 1985.
Mr. Taylor had the entire chassis rebuilt by Chassis Dynamics in Edison, New Jersey. It was further updated with a NASCAR style roll cage, 15-gallon fuel cell, and a multitude of clever safety features were added as well. The engine was prepared by Tom Lalinsky of Lalinsky Engineering. Running on a dynameter, this particular power plant has shown 497hp at the flywheel, and 463 ft/lbs of torque at 4500 rpm, truly outstanding figures for a street engine.
In 2001 the car passed to its current owner. Wishing to use the car in driver events, the car was made fully street legal. Lights, turn signals, and a windshield wiper were all installed to meet compliance. It has since been impeccably maintained and has taken part in the New England 1000, amongst other events. It has a full SVRA Group 4 logbook and is ready to compete in vintage events, or road rallies.
Powered by an easy to maintain and powerful Chevrolet small block, and possessing great 1950s styling this vintage Kellison, is an exciting piece of 1950s Americana, and a great car for any enthusiast.
Report by bonhams.com