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Old 11-13-2012, 05:51 AM
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Default Early history of the Cimbria

Spoke with Joe Palumbo again a couple of days ago. What a great guy. I just wanted to point out he re-iterated that he started the Cimbria in 1973, with the first ones rolling out that year, and the last one being built in 1985. He said he had a 12 year run of making them and ended up producing approximately 4,500 of them, with most of them being shipped to Canada to three different dealers up there who were buying them from him and selling them north of the border as basic kits.

I thought I would point this out so you could adjust the history section of this car to reflect Joe's statements. This goes in line with the member who states his original bill of sale has a 1974 date.

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Old 03-12-2013, 12:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuzz View Post
Spoke with Joe Palumbo again a couple of days ago. What a great guy. I just wanted to point out he re-iterated that he started the Cimbria in 1973, with the first ones rolling out that year, and the last one being built in 1985. He said he had a 12 year run of making them and ended up producing approximately 4,500 of them, with most of them being shipped to Canada to three different dealers up there who were buying them from him and selling them north of the border as basic kits.

I thought I would point this out so you could adjust the history section of this car to reflect Joe's statements. This goes in line with the member who states his original bill of sale has a 1974 date.

Fuzz
fuzz
if the first one was in 73 and one was bought in 74 where is the conflict?

(Note: Some content edited due to being personal.)

The original owner told me he drove to the factory paid for it
and brought it back to Missouri.

He did not buy it from a dealer he went to the factory.
He went to see the bodies being built in production.
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Old 03-12-2013, 12:51 AM
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No conflict. The production run was stated by Palumbo as being a year earlier than the poster's '74 postmark - nothing more. That simply means that the car had been offered a year before the owner ordered his.
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Old 03-12-2013, 04:06 PM
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The fascinating thing about the early history of the Cimbria, in my opinion, is that it seems like its relationship to the Sterling was originally totally denied (or at least greatly minimized), which makes the question of the timing of the first Cimbria kind of an interesting mystery. Or said another way, it would be very significant if we could find a Cimbria that we could actually confirm was older than the oldest Sterlings...which hasn't occurred (although the earliest Cimbrias DO seem to be remarkably close in age to the oldest Sterlings).

Joe seemed to originally market the car as a "totally original" design. Well...um...I respectfully challenge that. I think there's more to the story than that.

Without a doubt, Joe did an amazingly good job of taking the basic design of the Sterling/Nova and making it work quite nicely as a gull wing car. And along the way he added some very tasteful stylistic accents; not an easy feat to accomplish!

But here's the thing: I have a Generation I Cimbria and a Sterling sitting side by side in my garage, and there ain't no way that the Cimbria was a "totally original" design that just happened to almost exactly mimic the Sterling/Nova in virtually every profile and contour. Yes, there are many important little differences to the individual body panels. But to my logic, it is virtually inconceivable that Joe didn't start with a Sterling or Nova as a physical reference point.

Does this detract from the Cimbria? In my opinion, no, not one bit. I love my gen I Cimbria and think it's a wonderfully tasteful adaptation of an already really cool car.

And in a way, I can imagine why Joe would want or need to distance himself from (in my opinion) use of the Sterling as a starting point for legal reasons. Adding to this, the act of switching configuration to gull wing doors required a lot of intelligent engineering and definitely a TOTAL redesigning of the molds necessary. As such, I think it's very safe to describe the Cimbria as an (almost) total re-engineering/adaptation of the Sterling, even if it isn't "totally original."

But, c'mon... Very,very,very obviously he stared with a Sterling (or perhaps a Nova). I mean...just...c'mon! If it walks like a Sterling and it quacks like a Sterling...

Perhaps after all of this time, if asked, he would just nonchalantly say, "Well duh! Of course!" I don't know. Or perhaps he was never very tenacious about denying a family resemblance all along.

Anyway, getting back to the (kind of) original thought: The first Sterlings seem to be from 1973, and the very first Cimbrias seem to be from just a little bit later...like perhaps just months later. If that is true, I think it's absolutely remarkable that Joe was able to recognize a cool design and actually pull of that significant of a redesign within just a few months. Wow! Go Joe!!

But yeah, I still defi anyone to find a Cimbria older than the oldest Sterlings. It's just a really strong suspicion I have.

(That said, I never despair in being wrong when it involves learning something new, so if we really CAN fine one older than a Sterling, that's really cool...and it'll make us change how we think of the history and evolution of these cars.)

As always, keep the discussions light and friendly. It's always hard to hear people's "tone" in print. Assume the best, not the worst. Think of these issues as a community effort to refine the history of the cars.
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Old 03-12-2013, 05:40 PM
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We may get our answer sooner than we think. Stay tuned from our go-getters in Delaware with the Bernardi and Viper. Big things are on the immediate horizon concerning the Cimbria...
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Old 03-28-2013, 03:48 PM
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Default Seeking info on a V8 Cimbria SS

Does anyone have a copy of Kit Car Illustrated (I think that was the magazine) from late 80's that featured a Cimbria SS with a 454 Olds engine in it? I recall the car was a very light blue color and the builder had used a custom rectangular ladder chassis (if memory serves me correctly). The rear of the car's body would lift and tilt back, like the Ferrari F40 does. If anyone has that article, would you please scan it and e-mail it to me at fuzz148@verizon.net. I would greatly appreciate it. Does anyone know what happened to the car or know its whereabouts? Or who owned it? I hope its still out there and in one piece. I would like to find the owner and see if he could come to Carlisle. Any help would be appreciated.

Fuzz
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Old 05-17-2013, 10:48 PM
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Default I know the artical, and I use to have the magizine

Fuzz, I know the article you are talking about, and had it- but finding it will be a great challenge? I was going to put all of my old magazines in one group anyway, however currently they are in about 6 different locations- and I'm a hoarder. Wish me luck.
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Old 05-21-2013, 04:57 AM
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Default Early history of the Cimbria

I just scored a 1975 VW Magazine that has the Cimbria on the cover. Hopefully it has a well documented story to go along with it. Any luck looking for the Kit Car mag I mentioned?

Fuzz
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Old 05-21-2013, 09:52 PM
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Hey Fuzz; I just found 2 boxes of old Kit Car rags, couldn't recall what issue you wanted. I will dig thru them tomorrow for ya also. I've kept old car mags as far back as the mid-60s!! Why do we keep this stuff?? Some kind of OCD, ya recon?? Thanks for your help w/windshield info. I'll hold off
till I aquire my(oops"A") Cimbria. A real 328--wow.
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Old 05-22-2013, 05:07 AM
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Default Early history of the Cimbria

Yeah, the 328 is a real treat to drive. There is so much car and performance there. But truthfully, my first and real love is my Cimbria SS. I just think it is the most beautifully designed kit car ever, even if it is an adaptation of the Sterling, which Warren has me pretty much convinced that the early Cimbria was just that. But that's okay with me, because over time the Cimbria became its own car, especially with the final SS version.

If you find the magazine article I was referring to I would GREATLY appreciate it. Thank you for looking.

Fuzz
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