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Coachwork by John Toom
Accomplished Nissan designer John Toom had a unique vision for a custom motorcar with the flair and quality of a prewar coachbuilder. From early sketches and clay models to the full-scale wooden buck and hammering of the steel skin, Toom was intimately involved in all aspects of design and production of the “Aerodyne.” A labor of love for 11 years, Toom built the custom Jaguar in his garage with the help of his daughter, Joni, who personally designed the instrument panel and special badging. When Toom passed away before completing the project, his dear friend Ron Kellogg took up the mantle and, after an additional two years, finally unveiled it to the public in 2003.
From the beginning, Toom planned to use a vintage Jaguar chassis and drivetrain as a platform for his custom-designed coachwork. With its razor-crested pontoon fenders, fastback tail, and rear fender fairings, the hand-built body harkens back to the radical streamlined styling of European coachbuilders Figoni et Falaschi and Portout. The Aerodyne’s dark blue livery is accented by the judicious use of chrome trim and unique badging, which proudly declares, “Designer and Coachbuilder John C. Toom.” To complement the exterior color, the interior panels, carpet, and upholstery are trimmed in gray leather.
Every component and panel was precisely fitted to create an exquisite piece of rolling sculpture, every bit the equal of fabled, bygone coachbuilders of yesteryear.