Tom Chandler's 1953 Maverick Sportster

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A photo of Chandler's Maverick taken during the 2023 Monterey Car Week. Photo courtesy of Roy R. Sorenson.
In August of 2023, Chandler's Maverick was shown in the "American Dream Cars of the 1950s" class during the 2023 Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance. The class celebrated unique, limited-production cars built by remarkable individuals. These cars were designed and built in garages or local shops, not by big corporations. Photo courtesy of Roy R. Sorenson.
Photo courtesy of Roy R. Sorenson.
Photo courtesy of Roy R. Sorenson.
Photo courtesy of Roy R. Sorenson.
Photo courtesy of Roy R. Sorenson.
Photo courtesy of Roy R. Sorenson.
Photo courtesy of Roy R. Sorenson.

Maverick Sportster owned by Tom Chandler of Elkader, Iowa. The Maverick Sportster was a Fiberglass bodied Sport Custom designed and built by engineer Sterling Gladwin. Only seven boat-tail speedster Mavericks were built during the years 1952 to 1968. In addition to that, an unspecified number of body shells were also built. In 1968 Maverick Motors closed down due to lack of funds.

With its Jaguar-esque fadeaway fenders and wide, flat boattail, The Maverick Sportster is not your typical sports car. Designer and entrepreneur H. Sterling Gladwin called his car the “Land-based Pegasus.” The vehicle was over sixteen feet long but so well-proportioned it still had that sports car feel. In August of 2023, Chandler told Roy R. Sorenson that the car was in terrible shape when he bought it. It took the retired school teacher seven years in his home garage to restore it. Tom said he did everything but the paint. His arm wasn’t strong enough to hold the paint gun for the sixteen-foot-long passes on each side of the car!


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