In 1918, the question asked about the returning doughboys was “How you gonna keep ’em happy down on the farm, after they’ve seen Paree?” A little over a quarter century later, you might have changed the French capital to “MGs,” meaning the little British sports cars, and their more powerful brethren, to which American GIs were introduced when passing through the United Kingdom during World War II.
The demobilized Americans who had experienced the nimble little roadsters of Blighty wanted some of that action for themselves, but U.S. carmakers had little for them in the postwar 1940s—mostly just rehashes of whatever was on the production line in the first months of 1942 when auto manufacturing for the civilian market ceased “for the duration.”
Healeys, Rileys, Talbot-Darracqs, Fiats, and other dashing European cars soon flooded these shores to try to tempt sports car enthusiasts and bring much-needed U.S. currency back to their home countries. More than one American felt that U.S. companies should get a share of the sports car business. One of those was Frank Kurtis, a well-known race-car fabricator and metal craftsman.
‹ How Rajo Jack went from speed parts salesman to one of the first black race car drivers – Daniel Strohl @Hemmings