FATHER & SON.
Two men, a father and his son, with passion and talent for machines, propulsion, engines and racing. They share their love for vintage race cars, providing them with the most exhilarating and memorable experiences. Moments that they craved to create, repeat, celebrate and share. That passion drove them to hand build pre-war race cars that were ever faster, more powerful, thrilling – more beautiful – than the previous.
My father Kalle, a real petrol head since the first time he caught the smell of gasoline in his nose, awakened my love for motorsport. I bought my first American car when I was 17 and since then I’ve hardly gone a day without screwing, installing, removing or converting. For me, a car is freedom, beauty, and speed and it represents absolute perfection. By my early 20s, I was already an incurable car enthusiast and started customizing my first cars, a Volvo Amazon and a Ford Model A.
Many classic cars, big and small loves of mine, have passed through my hands, but it was only in 1998 that I discovered my passion for pre-war sports cars: I drove a French Amilcar 1926 in numerous pre-war-car races and can only confirm that the presentation of a classic car in front of an enthusiastic crowd is always and again overwhelming: you enjoy the admiration and most of all the uplifting feeling of driving in a kind of time machine.
Carl-Erik Billqvist “Kalle”
At 14 I started an apprenticeship as a car mechanic and from that day on I was irretrievably lost. They call it petrol head, gearhead or motor freak. I simply call it passion.
At almost 84 years of age, I still get excited about the fascination with engines and speed every day. On the one hand, it’s the challenge of constantly meeting the technical specifications, and on the other hand, I enjoy travelling back in time when cars still had their own, very special character.
My strong suit is car and ship engines, especially engines from the USA and Great Britain from the 50s, 60s and 70s. In the last 10 years, I have also specialized in automobile electronics.
FATHER & SON PROJECTS
Our first build, which we started in 2009, was a mix of a Ford Model A chassis and a Bugatti Type 37 body. The engine had a rare Ardun OHV head and a breather under the name “Forgatti” and was featured in many car magazines.
In 2010 we started the first long-term project: a land speed record car from the 1920s, based on a 1924 Delage DI chassis and an Italian supercharged 27-litre aircraft engine called “Isotta Fraschini”. It took us 3 years to complete the car. In 2013 it was introduced to the world as Il Drago Ruggente (Roaring Dragon). It was a terrific success: The Roaring Dragon toured all over Sweden and was twice in Brooklands, UK, the Classic Days at Schloss Dyck in Germany and took part in the mountain race the Grand Prix Groß Glockner in Austria.
Whenever we’re working on a project, we’re already thinking about the next one. Back in 2011, I started collecting parts, chassis and engines for a car inspired by the 1934-35 Mercedes W25 racing car. I was completely fascinated by the body design of the W25 and so right after the introduction of “Il Drago Ruggente” we started building Glennster S-12 based on a Buick 1928 chassis and a 1940 Lincoln V12 with a Marchall Supercharger 200K (mid-1930s) on the front. The Glennster S-12 took 7 years to complete. In 2019 he was ready for the first race and later drove e.g., at the Romo Motor Festival in Denmark and the Normandy Beach Race in France.
While building the Glennster S-12, I began collecting Buick Straight 8 engines for the next project. We had a pre-war streamliner in mind, but no real vision for the shape at the time.
It was somehow during the 2019 VHRA Hot Rod Races in Pendine, when we one way or another really got the project going. In many conversations with Göran and Andreas, away from the race track that weekend, I made the decision to start after our return to Sweden, with planning and execution. Our first challenge was to create the wood buck for the large fenders. We were lucky to have Göran Svensson as part of the C-16 team. Göran is an educated furniture carpenter, even if it was not his profession since late 70´s, but this skillset came to play when we created the fender wood buck, which took a month to finish.
A big challenge we had faced was to create the huge fenders at two and a half meters. Every fender was a wrestling fight, this would come to consume half of project time to craft and finish them.
One of the most critical mile stone was to create the fixed coupling between the two Buick engines. Kalle calculated that one of the crankshafts must be turned 11,250 degrees towards the other crankshaft in order to get a 16-cylinder fire order. We were also very lucky to have a friend (Istavan Popovic) who is very skilled engineer / designer as well an expert in milling and turning. He created and manufacture the coupling between the engine with the highest precision.
Mr.Olson joined the family; nearly too late we started to consider how to transport the Streamliner from one place to another. Simply the dimensions are bigger than any conventional trailer would coupe with. Luckily Andreas had the great idea to convert Mr Olson into what he is today, transporter of the time for the Streamliner C-16.
Istvan also helped us in another critical milestone. To modify a Nash twin 8 distributor to fit into the Buick engine and work as a 16-cylinder distributor. He did an outstanding job to make it fit and Kalle did a clever job to figure out how the distributor should work to support the 16-cylinder fire order.Nothing in the project was standard and bolt-on parts. It was just a stripped Chevrolet COE chassis 1939 and the two Buick straight 8 engines 1938 & 1940. More or less, everything came from a different car regards to the steering column and steering gear (Cadillac), front- and rear axle is Ford and Chevrolet.
In the end, the main challenge was to get the engine to run smoothly. The 4 Holley carburettors we used, didn´t work that well, even though they were fully restored as well as the 16-cylinder distributor who was not 100% working to get the engine to run from idle to full rev. 3 weeks before the trip to Pendine Sands we shifted the Holley to 4 brads new Stromberg Big 97 and also replaced the 16-cylinder distributer with 2 Buick distributors. That change (carburettors and distributor) with help of Coast Classics made a huge difference and the engine was running much smoother and as well on full throttle.
A SPECIAL THANKS TO THOSE WHO Helped MAkE THe VISIOn a reality.
Lars Edwardsson - Tool assistance
Andreas Ullstein - Coast Classics
Göran Svensson - Wood buck and body work
Istvan Popovics - Engine coupling development
Krister Lindblom - Pratts Speed Department
Peter Wounsch - Fender body work
Stefan Sell - Vintage Fotografie
Hans Rikk - Driving Mr. Olson
Mathias Gustavsson - C-16 metal badge
Liam Bates - Video Homepage
Browse through the below imagery and see some of the special moments we’ve captured.
Mr Olson is a 1970 Scania, a former removal truck, which has been converted into a period-correct and eye-catching race transporter by Coast Classics in Spain. Equipped with a 180 hp Diesel heart, winch and special build ramps, he is capable of taking the crew to any event they get the privilege of being invited to.
Book the Streamliner
As hosts or organizers of classic car events or races alike – and we know there are many of them - we know just how important it is to pull out all the stops. By picking the perfect location, exhibitors, and suppliers you ensure the show is the picture of perfection. And every year your visitors, guests, sponsors, and VIPs expect something new or more exciting. We have your icing on the cake: the Streamliner C-16.
Original W154 Rekordwagen, 1938.
Retro shootings, period pieces, classic commercials, film work or movie productions.
Pendine Sands VHRA
Hot Rod Races 2022
Get in contact
Reach out to find out more about the Streamliner C-16, we would be happy to hear from you!