General Motor’s Model Car Styling Contest

My dad took me to an auto show in Los Angeles in 1959. I don’t remember if it was a Motorama or not, but on display were several Fisher Body Craftsman’s Guild models. I took the literature and about wore it out looking through it for years before finally deciding to enter in 1964. I think what tipped the scale was seeing the actual Monza GT on display at a USRRC race at the Riverside International Raceway. I was never quite the same after seeing that car. I entered the contest three years straight (’64, ’65, and ’66) and received two honorable mentions.

 


Ron Hill’s 1950 National Award-winning entry. Photo courtesy of Ron Will.

 


Elia Russinoff’s 1949 National Award-winning entry. Photo courtesy of Ron Will.


Milt Antonick’s 1955 National Award-winning entry. Photo courtesy of Ron Will.

 


Terry Hinline’s 1958 National Award-winning entry. Photo courtesy of Ron Will.

 


Chuck Jordan’s 1947 National Award-winning entry. Photo courtesy of Ron Will.

 


John Mellberg’s 1965 1st Regional Award winner. Photo courtesy of John Mellberg.

 


John Mellberg’s 1966 2nd National Sr. Award winner. Photo courtesy of John Mellberg. John Mellberg wrote, “Becoming a Guild participant opened my eyes to the world of automotive vehicle design, and lead to what has become a lifelong career as a creative designer. The Guild set many of us upon this same journey, and was a great recruiting base for GM Design.”

 

Photos of the Fisher Body Craftsman’s Guild models from the 2004 Eyes on Design exhibit are posted here courtesy of Mike Parris.

The black and white photos in this post are scanned from various pieces of Guild literature.


Design & Build a Model Car booklet cover.


The books and Guildsman newsletter contained inspirational stylist’s renderings.

 


Design & Build a Model Car booklet cover.

 


Specifications sheet from contest year 1964–65. Click on the image to view full size.

 


The winners were treated to a tour of Styling. The designer sketching looks like Larry Shinoda.

 


1964 contest winners. Upper left is Tom Semple.

 


1965 contest winners. Geza Loczi is standing, second from right.

 


Judges Lenny Casillo and Terry Henline. Who is in the center?

 


Chuck Jordan’s model is on display at the Henry Ford Museum.

 


These photos were part of the same exhibit at the Henry Ford Museum.

 

There is a book about the contest entitled The Fisher Body Craftsman’s Guild-An Illustrated History by John L. Jacobus.

Photos of the Fisher Body Craftsman’s Guild models from the 2004 Eyes on Design exhibit are posted here courtesy of Mike Parris.

2 Comments
  1. Bill Marks

    Jordan’s model car was nicely restored as an epoxy casting from the original, Chuck told me. I guess he kept the wooden one he carved.

  2. Jim Simpson

    Always happy to see these wonderful models and the designers who created them… what amazing talent

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