Please note that the cars or exhibit items shown in this database are part of our collection but may not be on display when you visit.
In early 1940, Rudy Stoessel, Paul Erdos, and Burt Chalmers opened a small body shop in Hollywood called Coachcraft, Ltd., and began building custom bodies for movie stars and wealthy locals. In 1945, William "Shem" Hewson raised capital to form the Hewson Pacific Corp., and planned to produce the “Hewson Rocket” and sell it for $1,000. Stoessel fabricated the body shape and Erdos welded the aluminum panels together. Hewson’s idea was to give the body form a very aerodynamic shape with no projections anywhere–headlights covered with glass, tail-light lenses flush, and no outside door handles. As Hewson’s capital was depleted by the time the car’s body was finished, Coachcraft kept the car in their front showroom until it was auctioned off in 1959 to a used car dealer in Minneapolis for $650. The son of Rudy Stosell still operates Coachcraft in Morepark, California, just north of Los Angeles, to this day.