1959 Kellison J-4R Coupe

Jim Kellison was a fighter pilot during the Korean War who went on to study aircraft engineering at UCLA. In 1954, he founded his own company, Kellison Engineering, and began building professionally-engineered sports cars with fiberglass bodies. A Kellison J-4 Grand Turismo coupe cost $6,700 in 1959. To put that into perspective, you could buy a new Corvette for $3,875. As Motor Trend wrote when they tested Andy Porterfield’s new car, “Kellison’s J-4 is a well-built, nicely-executed coupe made for high-speed touring. There is luggage storage behind the driver and passenger in true GT tradition. Only thing, it’s almost too pretty to race.”
This particular road racing Kellison has been taken about as far as you can go. Don Rodimer, SCCA executive director in the Northeast, owned it from new. Well-known author/racer/rally organizer Rich Taylor obtained it from Rodimer’s estate in 1985. The original Kellison space frame, a mix of square and round tubes, was duplicated in all-new materials by Chassis Dynamics of Edison, New Jersey. A NASCAR-style roll cage, 15-gallon fuel cell, Simpson five-point harness, cut-off switch and other modern safety equipment were added at this time. Gauges are white-on-black VDO, steering wheel is Momo, shock absorbers are racing Koni, and brakes are four-wheel discs with Porterfield carbon-fiber pads. The classic 15×7 inch American Racing aluminum wheels are fitted with Dunlop Racing 6½x15 tires.
The original body was restored and painted Corvette bright white acrylic. The interior is finished in polished aluminum and black crackle. The windshield and rear window are unbreakable Lexan. The engine is a bored-and-stroked, 406-cubic-inch Corvette small block assembled by well-known vintage racing engine-builder Tom Lalinski of Germantown, Pennsylvania. It drives through a close-ratio four-speed M-21 transmission. The current differential ratio is 3.31:1, though ratios from 2.73 to 4.56 are easily installed.
Rich Taylor made his vintage racing debut in this car at the SVRA Sebring races, finishing third behind the Maserati Birdcage of Stirling Moss and Ferrari Testa Rossa of Peter Sachs. Since then, the Kellison has raced the full SVRA circuit, as well as the Lime Rock Vintage Fall Festival, where it received the Goodyear Cup.
This Kellison is perfectly maintained, fully sorted and ready to win races. It has never had an accident or DNF. It comes with a current SVRA Group 4 logbook as well as a good Florida title.