New Zephyr Sedan Delivery from Deco Rides Has Been Developed Providing a Radical New Way to Transport Motorcycles
For years, Terry Cook of DECO RIDES has had a vision to create a fiberglass Zephyr Sedan Delivery in addition to his coupe, convertible, and fastback. While Lincoln never made such an animal, artist Frank Nicholas and Terry created the first one on paper while brainstorming in 2000.
When Terry Cook displayed the first sedan delivery buck at the NSRA Street Rod Nationals in 2001, he presented a radical twist by taping a full sized paper motorcycle image on the exterior side of the body. Due to the unusual 17-foot length of the vehicle, there is room for a nine-foot long, 39-inch tall chopper motorcycle to fit inside. The bike's front wheel would be an "armrest" between the driver and "shotgun" front seat passenger, who would sit in bucket seats.
By using a front wheel drive platform and eliminating the "hump" in the rear floorboard needed to cover a conventional rear wheel drive axle, a motorized ramp could be used to get the bike in and out of the vehicle. The motorcycle could be rolled onto this ramp, strapped in position, and then the ramp and bike would be automatically retracted into the car at the touch of a switch. The rear door then closes automatically using linear actuators.
Seven years later, Terry's concept has turned into a reality as the Zephyr Sedan Delivery fiberglass bodies are now available from DECO RIDES. Since moving to their manufacturing facility in Elkhart, IN, the price of the front wheel drive Zephyr Sedan Delivery body has been reduced $10,900 to $9,900.
These body kits are produced using a combination of hand layup and chopper gun construction employing high stress marine fabrics. The strength of the new bodies has improved considerably over its predecessors.
Where the Deco Rides Zephyr coupe, convertible, and fastback models have an outer body shell and a full floorboard and firewall bonded in place, the sedan delivery is substantially different in construction. It includes a separate inner headliner, inner rear quarter panels, sculptured inner wheel wells and a flat floor designed to run from the firewall to the rear of the body. This inner shell is bonded inside the body so it not only conceals the inner metal framework (which was previously lacking on DECO RIDES Zephyr bodies built in Florida over the past five years), but it also provides a double wall structure. This, combined with the metal, provides a diagonally strong body. The inner liner also provides a smooth finished interior surface, ready for painting or application of interior upholstery panels (not required from the beltline up). Now having the floorboard and firewall bonded in place, the result is an incredibly rigid and rattle-free 17-foot long one-piece unit.
FRONT WHEEL DRIVE POWERTRAINS: The prototype vehicle, which was built by Brown's Metal Mods in Indianapolis, will tour the USA this summer. It was designed to use a Chevy S-10 four wheel drive transfer case and 700 R4 transmission which was originally mated to a V6 engine. In order to eliminate the hump that this creates along the floorboard of the vehicle, Deco Rides discarded the driveshaft to the rear axle and adapted it as a front wheel drive platform. The V6 is replaced by a small block Chevy V8 that bolts right up to the Chevy 700 R4 automatic transmission.
REAR WHEEL DRIVE: For anyone preferring the conventional rear wheel drive, the new FWD body could easily be adapted to fit on a standard Fat Man Fabrications rear wheel drive DECO RIDE Zephyr chassis ($8,225), given a little rear floorboard surgery. This includes disc brakes and coil over shocks on all four corners with a 9-inch Ford rear and rack and pinion manual steering. Mounts for your choice of engine and transmission are included.
OPTIONS: A curved custom cut windshield will bond into special aperture designed to accept the glass and will add more structural strength to the body. An optional replacement aftermarket grille is available, or an original 1940 or 1941 Lincoln grille can be used. Aftermarket headlight buckets and lenses can be fitted in place by the builder. A pair of electrically operated linear actuators to operate the top hinged rear door is another option. We are also investigating a Dynamat sound and vibration dampner liner between the inner and outer shells as an additional option. Rounding out the list of options is a $500 drop snoot hood. While there is no “production” FWD delivery chassis developed at this point, anyone who buys a DECO RIDES sedan delivery body will receive free photos and plans of the prototype chassis. When a production FWD chassis becomes available, the automatic ramp for the motorcycle loading and unloading will be an available option.
The DECO LINER Zephyr Sedan Delivery and Boattail Speedster can be seen this summer at:
June 6-8, York, PA NSRA Street Rod Nationals East
June 14-22, Laconia, NH Bike Week at the Lobster Pound
July 11-13, Columbus, OH GOODGUYS Nationals
July 18-19, Syracuse, NY street rod event
August 31 NSRA Street Rod Nationals, Louisville, KY (Thurs only)
August 4-10, Sturgis, SD Motorcycle Rally in Champion's Park
August 12 Concours on Ocean Ave., Carmel, CA
August 22-24, Pleasanton, CA GOODGUYS
August 28-31, Parsippany, NJ 26th annual LEAD EAST
FOR SALE: At the completion of the tour, the sedan delivery DECO LINER and matching streamlined Harley Davidson Sportster DECO SCOOT will be sold to the highest bidder. DECO RIDES can arrange to deliver it on the way back across country from Pleasanton, CA.
About DECO RIDES:
DECO RIDES is bringing the 1930's classics into the 21st Century with a hot rod flavor, gusto, and verve. With offices in Long Valey, NJ, their production facility is located in Elkhart, IN.
Former HOT ROD Magazine Editor (1972-'74) Terry Cook has an absolute passion for classic styling. Always seeking slippery shaped cars with sensuous flowing lines, he is addicted to Concours Coachbuilt cars. For most of us, these vehicles are out of reach. As a result DECO RIDES (www.decorides.com) produces affordable hot rod versions of coachbuilt classics in fiberglass form and sells steel frames for the bodies.
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