The last of Joel Rosen’s Shark Corvettes – The Moray Eel
As cool as the Mako Shark-styled production 1968 Corvette was, there were a few that were… disappointed. Why, you wonder? Because the ‘68 Corvette WASN’T the ‘65-’66 Mako Shark II show car. Making a show car is one thing, designing a car to be mass produced is another. While the Mako Shark II show car looked large on the stage, it was actually about 7/8s the size of the production Corvette. In other words, a VERY tight little package that could not directly translate into a production car.
But it was fiberglass man, John Silva that took it upon himself to make his own Mako Shark. “Kit cars” were all the rage in the mid-to-late ‘60s. Meanwhile, on Long Island, New York, Joel Rosen was building ground-pounding big-block Phase III Chevys and was looking for something really exotic to offer his Corvette customers. Rosen bought two complete Silva Maco cars and got permission from Silva to make molds off of the Silva parts to make his Motion Maco kits. The Maco kits were kind of a “love it, or hate it” thing. It wasn’t quite as svelte as the Mako Shark, but for many, it was close enough.
For creative types, such as Rosen, the mind never stops. In the early ‘70s Joel was on a roll with his “shark-thing.” His Motion Maco Shark burst on the street scene in ‘71, quickly followed by two interesting variations. The Manta Ray featured the front end of the Phase III GT with its distinctive tunneled headlights and signature Motion hood treatment, with the roof section of a Maco Shark and a large Z-28-like rear spoiler. The Manta Ray was only offered in ‘73 and just three units were built.
The last of Rosen’s Sharks was the Moray Eel. Built on a ‘72 Corvette, the Moray Eel was part Maco Shark, part Manta Ray. The flip front end was devoid of scoops, vents, pop-up or fared-in headlights and featured the Mako Shark II-style hood bludge. The roof section was pure Maco and the back end had the rear flipper-spoiler from the Manta Ray. The car shown here was the one and only Moray Eel built. As an aside, when the car was originally painted, something went terribly wrong with the paint. What was supposed to be pearl yellow turned out to be lime green. The paint was corrected when the car was totally restored in 2006.
When the car was built and completed in ‘73, it got some attention in CARS Magazine and a few years later would occasionally show up in the then-new VETTE Quarterly magazine. But after the customer took delivery of the car, it pretty much went underground for a long time. The car really didn’t get that much print attention and the video allows you to see more of the car than ever before. If it turns out that this is the Corvette of your dreams, the car IS for sale. You’ll find contact info at the end of the video. Or, you can visit www.RKMotorsCharlotte.com for more info. – Scott
PS – For more info and photos of the Motion Moray Eel, CLICK HERE, and HERE.
PSS – We covered “Rosen’s Sharks” here at CorvetteReport.com HERE.
Art prints of Rosen’s Sharks are available HERE.
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