The Troy Custom Roadster was built in 1959 by Wally Troy and his team in Illinois. Up until this point, Wally had been better known as the first Jaguar dealer in his state, at a time when Jaguar was building some of their most iconic vehicles including the Mark 2, the D-Type, the and the XK series.
Wally had an eye for design and an obvious love for cars, so in 1958 he began the process of designing his own. He started from a blank sheet and developed his own tubular steel chassis and aluminium bodywork.
The styling of the Troy Roadster takes cues from both the Indy cars of the era, and the world of Hot Rods – which were a huge part of the ’50s automotive zeitgeist. The twin bubble windshields are a hallmark of the era too – the Jet Age was peaking just as Wally and his team got to work on their one-off motor car.
The best power-to-weight ratio option was (and still is in many cases) an American V8, a 350 cubic inch Chevrolet in this instance. Twin 4-barrel carburettors were fitted up top with chromed air filters, a 4-speed transmission sends the power back to the 9-inch rear end, and power is fed to the ground via a set of chrome knock-off wheels riding on period correct Excelsior tires.
The most famous appearance by the 1959 Troy Custom Roadster was in the pages of Hot Rod Magazine in 1960, and it was restored back to this original spec in the 1990s – including a new set of chromed side pipes with heatshields.
In retrospect it seems a shame that Wally and his team didn’t build more than one of these, the styling is excellent and although we don’t have any official performance figures it’s likely a very quick car thanks to its large engine and low kerb weight.
Mecum will be auctioning off Wally’s roadster in Houston on the 6th of April, there’s no currently available estimate on value and if you’d like to read more or register to bid you can click here.