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Henry Covington's "El Tiburon" (the shark) was one of the great tragedies among home-brewed, almost-built car models. Covington designed and built nine copies of the futuristic sports car in 1958 out of his house in St. Petersburg Florida. In truth, the shark was just a space-agey fiberglass body — decked out with a greenhouse roof that tilted upward for access to the interior — slapped over a Renault chassis. The last remaining body was sold to an optometrist, who dropped it onto Porsche underpinnings (it's been restored). Now, a Tampa car historian is looking for the remaining cars that may still be in circulation, barned, or in any variation thereof. If you know the whereabouts of an El Tiburon, don't approach it alone (it is a shark, don't forget); e-mail Geoffrey Hacker at

In search of El Tiburon [Tampa Bays 10]

El Tiburon Was One of the Past's Cars of the Future [internal]