For those of you who where into kit cars in the late 70s to early 80s or have seen the magazines of the day you may remember the Willow kit cars by Seltzer Automotive. If I had to describe it I would say it had a “Can-Am” type look but appeared shorter. In a time when the kit car industry was still dominated by VW based kits the Willow Kit Car was a rocket ship ready to fly.
I recently got in contact with Eric Seltzer. The man behind the Willow Kit Car. Eric is now retired and living in Nevada, but he was kind enough to share with us a few photos and a bit of info about how the willow came to be. I am going to just copy his email here….
Thanks for letting me know about your website! I’m 72-years old, a retired business owner and mechanical engineer. I raced Formula-B and Formula-Ford race cars in SCCA road racing in the early ’70’s in Southern California. I thought I could build a better kit car than the usual VW based kits, so I designed a car with a transverse mid-engine using a 2.0L OHC Ford Pinto engine mated to a Ford Fiesta transaxle. I named it the Willow in recognition of the Willow Springs Race Track which always favored good handling cars over pure horsepower.
There is too much to cover here, attached find some photos and a PDF of our first brochure for your archives. I sold the project in 1983 to Fred Schrameck of Hayward, CA, S&S Race Group.
Sparks, NV 89436
It it such a cool thing to be able to hear from guys like Eric who where innovative in a time where Classic Motor Carriages, Fiberfab, and Bradley dominated the kit car industry. They built kit cars for people who wanted a hold on to your seat experience and not just a cool looking car.
Here is the info Eric sent me along with his email. Please comment below