One of the most famous post-war American vehicles is Preston Tucker’s Tucker Torpedo, a failure so smartly engineered that it warranted a glossy Hollywood movie. Just over 50 of the originals were built, and most still survive. Roy Tucker, on the other hand, had another idea: create the Tucker Torpedo prototype. This interesting home-grown car is currently on eBay for those interested in the esoteric.
Roy (no relation to the original Preston) got ahold of the plans drafted by designer Alex Tremulis and used a 1971 Buick Riviera as a mule to recreate the Tucker prototype. It looks rather awkward, but if you view the mid-1940s drawings from Tremulis and squint while doing it, you’ll see that Roy was rather successful in his endeavor . . . at least from the front. The rear? Well, it’s easy to tell the Riv was the basis for this creation, and the transformation was less successful in this regard.
The actual pilot-built Tuckers evolved from these Tremulis sketches, looking like a much better integrated vehicle while still maintaining the futuristic look from the sketches. They’ve been blue-chip collectibles since the 1970s; however, this “Tucker Torpedo II” is one man’s vision to create another man’s vision, serving as an example of an obscure car that is known within the old car community but with few takers – currently, it’s a hair over 15 grand without meeting reserve.