Robert Hilditch

Sterling #CCC239 (A)

 

The serial number stamped into my Sterling when I purchased the vehicle was CCC239A.  The “A” stamp is not the same styled lettering or originally stamped into the car when manufactured, but done aftermarket.  This is the slightest of changes done to this unique Sterling Sports Car kit.


Hi!  My name is Robert Hilditch and here is my short story of my past and present experiences with this kit car industry.  Ever since my childhood Sterling’s have influenced my interests in automobiles.  When I was about ten years old, playing at my mom’s apartment, I noticed a red sports car behind the local bowling alley in Anderson CA.  I couldn’t resist going over to look at the car. 
I then asked that trademarked question “Is that a Lamborghini?”
He replied with a chuckle “No it’s a Sterling.”
I walked off after admiring the car remembering the car by referencing Sterling to Sterling Silver.
My second experience with Sterling’s came when I was buying my first car. I unknowingly called on an ad in the Sac Bee under the Volkswagon section.  The man who I called told me info on the car and directions to his house.  To make a long story short, I got lost and ran out of gas.  Figured that as a sign to not get that car and bought a 69 Bug instead.
My third experience was the best one yet!  In 2000 my fiancé got pregnant.  I knew that I would need to get all of my toys before having children and a project to pass the time.   So I began to search for it.  Again I saw Sterling for sale in the classified ads.  I went on the internet and searched for “Sterling”.  I then remembered that car from my childhood and called on the ad. I talked with the previous owner of the car and once again set on my mission to acquire a Sterling.  I had to travel a couple of hours to reach my destination in Alta, CA.  When I first saw this car I was in love.  The front air dam was halfway broken off but still had a stance that was incredible.  The previous owner said that he had purchased the car from an estate sale in Shingle Springs in 1995.  I inspected the car prior to purchasing the car and noticed that there was another rear bumper inside of the actual exterior of the car.  I knew this was something special.  The previous owner wanted to finish the car but his age was catching up to him and didn’t have the energy to spend on this project.  I then decided to take a chance and see if I could finish/fix this project.

          The car when I first purchased it was rough to say the least.  Someone had made molds and put a newer side paneling/ground effect around the whole car.  The body style was a good idea but the work was not good enough.  I had worked on the original fabrications done to the car for about five years to finish the car. I got it registered and drove it to work (2 miles) in August, I felt like I was inside of an oven and I was uncomfortable.  I wanted to be able to drive the car not just look at it.  So that’s when I decided to change everything.  It was a hard decision to make but it was the right one.

Here is a list of changes to the DEMON from the original Sterling:
-Updated lined and curves
-3 inches more headroom
-Canopy roof shifted forward for many reasons
-Windshield angle not as steep
-3 inches wider
-6 inches longer (in back)
-Front air dam
-Canopy roof spoiler
-True wheel wells
-Side ground effects, 4.5 inches from behind front tire to 1inch in front of rear tire, lower than that of the original sterling.

            Throughout the years I have tried to get to the bottom of why someone would change so much of the car and can’t seem to find the answer from anyone.  I have always believed that I somehow ended up with the “next” sterling or as I refer to it as the DEMONstrator model that never made it into production.   I have never been able to prove this so I guess that car number 239A was just someone’s race car built strictly for himself.  Now I have finished and want everyone who is interested to be able to have the updated body style.  Please send me an E-mail or visit my website at hcfabrications.webs.com and let me know what you think.

 

 

 

Body Serial Number

Year

OEM Exterior Color

Chassis

Engine displacement

CCC239

1973

primer grey

VW

2054

Gearbox

VW 4 speed

Original Features/Equipment

 

Owner additions/modifications

 Customized fiberglass side/rear paneling(3 inches wider and 6 inches longer), Front air dam/ ground effects. Wrap around 1976 Camaro taillights, 4 inch padded high back bucket seats(super comfortable), Raised cockpit of car 3 inches and shifted the canopy roof  4 inches, changed angle of windshield 5 degrees, Changed/Updated body lines styling 2005-2008. modified front air dam, fenders, front spoiler/ support, 1.5inch billet aluminum wheel adapters.  94mm x76mm motor with dual carb setup.  Custom engine compartment louvers.  Cooling fan hooked to top induction ports via ducting

 

Previous owners, last owner listed first

Location

Gerald Reddig

CA

Jay D. P******

CA

Harold McNamee

CA

Gary Buhrmeister

CA