This car started life as a standard 1960 Austin-Healey 3000 before being modified with a sleek Fiberfab Jamaican body in the late 1960s. It was later converted into a race car and it has a number of wins under its belt, as well as a 82mph lap average at Mallory Park.
The story of Fiberfab is one of fast cars, intrigue, and murder. The company founder’s wife was named Jamaica – he shot and killed her when she was 28, he was convicted of voluntary manslaughter and died in prison just a year later.
Fast Facts – The Fiberfab Jamaican Austin-Healey
- Fiberfab was founded in 1964 by Warren “Bud” Goodwin and John Hebler to manufacture performance parts for sports cars, as well as body parts for cars from Chevrolet, Ford, and Jaguar.
- The company soon began building their own fiberglass body kits, including the Apache, Aztec, Aztec II, and Centurion.
- The Fiberfab Jamaican was released in 1968, some say it was partly influenced by the Lamborghini Miura. It was essentially a kit including a new fiberglass body that could be fit to the chassis of a TR3, TR4, MGA, or Austin-Healey 100 or 3000.
- The Fiberfab Jamaican you see here was built into a race car in England and then raced in vintage competition, taking a number of wins. It’s now been converted back to street-legal specification and it’s due to be auctioned by Bonhams on the 17th of September.
The Fiberfab Jamaican
The Fiberfab Jamaican was designed by Chris and Russell Beebe and released in 1968, some have claimed that it was influenced by the Lamborghini Miura which had been released in 1966, though Fiberfab always denied this.
The lightweight fiberglass body of the Jamaican could be fitted to the chassis of a variety of British sports cars of the day, including the Triumph TR3, TR4, MGA, and the Austin-Healey 100 or 3000.
The conversions were popular as the donor cars were cheap at the time, and performance was typically helped by the lower weight of the new body. The styling was also a significant factor, everyone knew what a Triumph or MGA looked like but the Jamaican looked like something straight out of the 21st century.
Over the course of production two primary versions of the car would be offered, the original Fiberfab Jamaican and the later Fiberfab Jamaican II. The second model had been added due to customer demand for a version of the car that could accommodate a V8 engine – so Fiberfab developed their own custom chassis.
Tragically it was around this time, in 1967, that company founder Warren “Bud” Goodwin was arrested for the shooting death of his wife, 28 year old Jamaica Karen Goodwin who was also a Fiberfab executive.
Goodwin was convicted of voluntary manslaughter and sentenced to a surprisingly light sentence of just 12 months in prison. He would never see freedom again, dying of a heart attack while incarcerated on the 26th of December 1968.
Fiberfab the company would survive this series of tragic events, changing ownership a number of times before finally closing its doors in 1994 as part of Classic Motor Carriages. The company was then relaunched in 2003 however no new cars were released and the current status of the company is unknown.
The Fiberfab Jamaican Austin-Healey Shown Here
The car you see here was in dire condition before it was saved by its current owner and shipped from the USA to England. It needed a full nut-and-bolt restoration, which was completed – converting it into a racing car at the same time.
A pair of racing seats with harnesses were added, as well as a bolt-in roll cage, and a number of performance upgrades. The car was accepted to compete in races held by the Historic Racing Drivers Club (HRDC) and others, winning a number of races along the way and setting an impressive lap at Mallory Park with an average speed of 82 mph.
The car has now been converted back for road use, thought it still has the racing seats, harnesses, and roll cage just in case the new driver wants to take it back to the track.
This car is due to cross the auction block with Bonhams on the 17th of September at the Goodwood Revival auction. The price guide is set at £45,000 – £55,000 which works out to approximately $52,000 – $63,600 USD. If you’d like to read more about it or register to bid you can visit the listing here.
Images courtesy of Bonhams
Ben has had his work featured on CNN, Popular Mechanics, Smithsonian Magazine, Road & Track Magazine, the official Pinterest blog, the official eBay Motors blog, BuzzFeed, and many more.
Silodrome was founded by Ben back in 2010, in the years since the site has grown to become a world leader in the alternative and vintage motoring sector, with millions of readers around the world and many hundreds of thousands of followers on social media.