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 Post subject: Zeppelin Gaylord Gladiator
PostPosted: Mon Mar 30, 2015 8:29 pm 
Coachbuilder

Location: Texas
Joined: Sun Jul 17, 2011 8:18 pm
Posts: 201
Zeppelin constructed the two "production" Gladiator models for the Gaylord brothers of Chicago, Illinois. A run of 25 were planned but only two were built. Prior, a prototype with some differences such as a Chrysler Hemi engine and P-100 headlamps had been built. The production cars had Cadillac power and quad headlamps. The disappearing hardtop was a feature.


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 Post subject: Re: Zeppelin Gaylord Gladiator
PostPosted: Mon Mar 30, 2015 10:23 pm 
Master coachbuilder
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Location: Weiterstadt/Darmstadt
Joined: Sat Sep 15, 2012 4:24 pm
Posts: 28754
The Gaylord was designed by Jim Gaylord and the first prototype was built by Spohn viewtopic.php?f=57&t=3000
But when Jim Gaylord saw it, he didn't like what he saw and gave the order to Brooke Stevens to modify the car. The modified second prototype, which we see here was built by Zeppelin. It is said that Spohn built two cars and Zeppelin one, but that's not sure. Meanwhile Jim Gaylord has spent many millions of dollars for the Gaylord project when his mother said: Stop ! No more money. And so the Gaylord car died.
(Source: Erik Eckermann - Auto und Karosserie)


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 Post subject: Re: Zeppelin Gaylord Gladiator
PostPosted: Mon Mar 30, 2015 11:38 pm 
Coachbuilder

Location: Texas
Joined: Sun Jul 17, 2011 8:18 pm
Posts: 201
It is generally and broadly acknowledged that Spohn had significant problems going into the mid-1950s in finding contracts for cars to build and that their once formidable workforce of several hundred was dwindling rapidly. In a phone interview with Jim Gaylord some years ago, researcher Glenn Brummer learned that the 1955 build quality of the prototype Gladiator from Spohn was quite inadequate. The best craftsmen had left the building. It was the car he and his brother had designed, but not the extreme high quality they expected.

It is possible the only "second car" that Spohn built for the Gaylords was a display chassis. That chassis appearance at car shows would logically have been with the initial prototype for promotion to the public.


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 Post subject: Re: Zeppelin Gaylord Gladiator
PostPosted: Fri Jul 08, 2016 8:18 pm 
Master coachbuilder

Location: Oslo, Norway
Joined: Mon Mar 23, 2015 1:51 am
Posts: 1900
Today.


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 Post subject: Re: Zeppelin Gaylord Gladiator
PostPosted: Mon Jul 12, 2021 5:28 pm 
Craftsman

Location: Perchtoldsdorf, Austria
Joined: Tue Oct 23, 2012 6:22 pm
Posts: 107
StillOutThere wrote:
Zeppelin constructed the two "production" Gladiator models for the Gaylord brothers of Chicago, Illinois. A run of 25 were planned but only two were built. Prior, a prototype with some differences such as a Chrysler Hemi engine and P-100 headlamps had been built. The production cars had Cadillac power and quad headlamps. The disappearing hardtop was a feature.


Fahrzeug-Instandsetzung Gmbh, Nachfolgerbetrieb des Luftschiffbau Zeppelin (FIF) built one car for the Gaylord brothers in 1957. They did not even finished it, it was shipped to another coachbuilder where it was finally finished.
Jim Gaylord, who was already in a lawsuit against Spohn (fun fact of the day: Josef Eiwanger, head of Spohn, hijacked the 2nd prototype at FIF during completion, because he claimed Gaylord owed them money) also sued FIF. He was talking about untrained and senile executives. The lawsuit dragged on and eventually it spelled the end of Gaylord's automotive dreams.
In issue No4 of Rare & Unique Vehicles, which is due out in September, we will feature the Gaylord Gladiator with previously unknown snippets taken from the official correspondence, accompanying the car, which is today in the Zeppelin Museum in Friedrichshafen.


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