(from March 2004)

photos by Sam Trent, story by Michael B. Kelly

Current Ft. Lauderdale, Florida resident Bill Carroll was drag racing in the 60’s, and Anglias and Willys were the way to go. From 1964 to 1967 Bill raced a Willys Coupe, and in 1965 and 1966 he won the NHRA Indy Nationals in C/Gas. After the Indy Nats in ‘66 he decided to buy an Anglia and move up to A/Gas. After purchasing a running stock 1948 Anglia in West Palm Beach his plan’s didn’t work out and the car was sold. The ‘48 Anglia changed hands about 3 or 4 times, with the last owner turning it into a 60’s style street rod. In 1977 Bill bought the car back, and used it as a driver until 1989. At that point he pulled it all apart and updated it to its current specs, with the completion coming in June of 1990 for the NSRA Street Rod Nationals in Columbus, Ohio. In 2000 the motor was freshened up, and a 700R4 installed for better highway cruising.

Underneath the stock Anglia frame was completely boxed and treated to a narrowed back half and a 6-point roll cage by Steve Hall of HiPer Fab in Oakland Park, Florida. Chassis Engineering got the call for suspension upgrades, and up front is a straight axle with a 4-bar set up, while out back you’ll find a 4-bar diagonal link system, with adjustable coil overs at all four corners.

Providing the power is a 350 Chevy bored .030 over, which was machined and blueprinted by Russ Barfield of Russ Auto Parts & Machine in Hollywood, Florida. Russ modified a Holly 600 cfm carb with billet bowls, while a Chevy distributor with the Pertronix electronic conversion lights off the mixture and a pair of S&S Shorty headers route it out. A 700R4 was fitted with B&M components by Russ, and is shifted via a B&M Pro Stick.

The stock steel body saw the addition of sheet metal hood sides and a custom fiberglass top incorporating a Harwood scoop. The gas filler was hidden behind the recessed license plate, and a third brake light was flush mounted by Wes Christensen. David Bauer of Creative Colors & Concepts in Davie did the body work, which ensured that when he applied the Sikkens special turquoise paint mixed by Mike Adams it would come out silky smooth. Tasteful belt-line graphics were added by David Bauer utilizing blue, raspberry and silver, and a set of Budnik Famosa rims (15x4” fronts, 15x10” rears) round out an attractive package.

Inside you’ll find a custom dashboard crafted by Bill Carroll and Steve Hall which houses Auto Meter Pro gauges in a custom instrument panel. An overhead console and switch panel keep things within reach yet out of the way, while passengers sit on a pair of Fiero seats with the headrests removed. Upholstery duty was handed over to Jeff Phipps, who came up with a nice design in two-tone gray tween and vinyl, with a charcoal wool carpet. For tunes Bill chose a Sanyo receiver with eight Rockford Fosgate speakers driven by a Punch 45 amp. Other items lending a more comfortable cabin experience include a custom air conditioning system by HiPer Fab, cruise control, power windows, and a CB radio.

It’s always neat to hear the stories behind the cars you see at the shows, and this one was no exception. Obviously Bills drag racing past attracted him to owning a 1948 Anglia in the first place, but it was neat how this particular one came around full-circle. From intended drag racer, then going through several owners, and winding up back with Bill in 1977. Few people have owned their current car for 37 years, and Bill’s is looking as good as ever. CN