History of Kaiser Cars (1947-1955)
After World War II, with the great need for transportation, many newcomers entered the automobile industry looking for success. Henry J. Kaiser, a shipbuilder during the war, was looking forward to the postwar period. He anticipated the needs for house, medical care, and automobiles. Along with a beneficial health care plan and an expansion in the manufacturing of materials for houses, Kaiser ambitiously began to build automobiles, creating Kaiser-Frazer Corporation with his partner, Joseph W. Frazer, the former CEO of the Graham-Paige Corporation.
Henry Kaiser worked from a modest beginning to build an empire of shipbuilding, steel, and cement production, and earned the title “the Miracle Man” by building remarkable numbers of ships during World War II. Joseph Frazer worked his way up in Packard, rising from manual labor to the executive ranks. They met in 1942 and again in 1945; at their second meeting they agreed to team up. By working quickly they were able to lease Ford’s Willow Run plant from the WAA and build a full 11,000 cars in 1946, before the big Detroit automakers could get going. The next year 100,000 cars were made with a $19 million profit.
In January 1946, two well-kept secrets were revealed to the public in the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in New York City: non-running prototypes of the new Frazer and the revolutionary Kaiser K85 family car with front-wheel drive. While there ultimately was a running front wheel drive Kaiser (even driven by Tom McCahill in 1946), the development time was too short to bring it to production and the final decision was to use the same body and drivetrain for both the Frazer and Kaiser. The Kaiser K85, with its advanced unit-body construction, would never be built, and all Kaiser cars would have body and frame construction.
Kaiser-Frazer Corporation’s first car was launched for the 1947 model year. Known as the Kaiser Special, it was a four door sedan with a six cylinder engine. These two cars (with the Frazer) had the first true postwar sheet metal with enveloped bodies and fender lines that ran front to rear in an unbroken contour. The Kaiser had many luxurious features including welded all-steel construction; between the wheel seating; exceptionally wide wheel rims; low center of gravity; low, luxurious seats; large luggage compartment; curved wraparound bumpers; dual horns; twin sun visors; dash mounted starter switch; automatic dome lights; and large, hydraulic self-centering brakes. The Kaiser radiator grille was a mixture of vertical and horizontal blades (not unusual for the period) with rectangular parking lamps placed outside the grille work, under the headlamps. A large hood badge bearing the letter ‘K’ above a buffalo shield told the world that this was a Kaiser vehicle.
Modern features included aluminum alloy pistons, an automatic choke, double-acting hydraulic brakes, independent suspension, curved rear window, and fresh-air heater. A more unusual feature was the hand throttle.
The Kaiser Custom was a higher trim. Although the engine was the same, the Kaiser Custom had more features and convenience options. These features include a leather-trimmed dashboard and upholstery; special dashboard and window control knobs; a clock; robe holder; new ashtrays and package shelf; more interior trim and bright metal windshield frames; upholstered trunk compartment; passenger assist handles; chrome highlighted footrests; courtesy lamps; bright finished hand brake lever and lengthwise seamed headliner. The car was distinguished outside by rocker panel molding, custom front fender scripts, and chrome wheel trim rings. The custom interiors were carefully keyed to harmonize with special exterior shades such as Onyx; Linden Green; Clay Pipe Gray; Coral Sand; Horizon Blue and Hickory Brown Metallic. Some of the convenience options were the defroster and heater, radio, radio antenna, stainless steel wheel trim rings, tailpipe extension, full wheel discs, outside rear view mirror, external sun visor, traffic light viewer, spot lights, fog lamps, plastic white sidewall discs, front and rear bumper guards, and white sidewall tires.
The first year of Kaiser saw no less than 70,000 sales, marking the car as a success; though only 5,412 were the presumably more profitable Custom series. Frazer added around 60,000 more sales for a highly successful year.
In 1948, the Kaiser saw very few changes. Most alterations had been made during the 1947 model run. The changes were of minor significance. The same thing went for the Kaiser Custom – small changes were minor significance. Production of the Kaiser Special rose considerably, passing 90,000 cars, while production of the more expensive Kaiser Custom fell to just over a thousand. The 1948 Frazer added nearly 50,000 more cars to the list, the last year it would make a significant contribution. For 1949, Frazer dropped to around 25,000 cars; its last year was 1950, selling around 10,000 cars in two series and two body styles.
1949-1950: Kaiser Custom and Kaiser Special
In 1949, Kaiser-Frazer Corporation spent $10 million to completely revamp the 1949 models to make them look longer, lower, and more modern. The wheelbase was extended to 123.5 inches, with the overall length growing by nearly ten inches to 206.5 inches. Henry Kaiser (over the objections of Joseph Frazer) pushed for greater production of these models, while Frazer pointed out that the opposition would have brand new bodies, and that the facelifted 1949s would be lucky to sell 60,000 copies for a $33 million loss. When the results were in, 80,000 1949s had been sold for a loss of $31 million.
Nine new body colors and four selections of exclusive fabrics were available in the Kaiser Special, while the Kaiser Deluxe offered seventeen colors and its interior provided a choice of nine fabrics and leather in three colors. Two powerplants were offered – a 112 horsepower engine in the Kaiser Deluxe and a 100 horsepower unit, for its performance and economy, in the Kaiser Special.
The Kaiser Special had a new four door sedan, known as the Traveler, costing $2088. In the Deluxe series, the 4-door convertible; the 4-door Hardtop sedan, known as the Virginian; and the 4-door Utility sedan, known as the Vagabond were new. New convenience options were also introduced, including directionals and a rear cigar lighter. Kaiser bragged that the Traveler and the Vagabond led a double life: they were easily converted from a family sedan to a pick-up van in just ten seconds, thanks to an early hatchback design.
In 1950, Kaiser had planned to sell another facelifted line of cars; but by October 1949, they realized the task wouldn’t be accomplished in time. Instead, the serial numbers on the cars from the previous year would be changed and the sale agents were told not to represent these cars as different from the previous product. Thus, the 1950 model year only lasted four months until the 1951 Kaiser line was introduced on February 16, 1950.
1951-1955 Kaiser cars: Anatomic Design, Henry J.
The 1951 models were the same basic structure as would remain until the end of Kaiser production in 1955. The shape was changed – it was now less boxy with an increased area of glass. The old-pontoon shape was gone as well as the bull-nosed frontal appearance. Sales were complicated by the Korean war and government restrictions, but around 145,000 model-year-1951 Kaisers found new homes, showing them to be a rousing success at launch. In calendar year 1949, Kaiser had sold just 60,405 cars; in 1950, they sold 118,554 Kasiers and nearly 31,000 Henry Js, thanks, it seems, largely to the 1951s.
The Kaiser Deluxe shared bodies with the Kaiser Special, but had a richer appearance and more standard equipment. Kaiser bragged about their cars’ new “Anatomic Design” made to fit the human anatomy. Both the Special and the Deluxe had more spacious interiors and four models and body styles – four door sedans, two door sedans, club coupes, business coupe, and two and four door Traveler sedans.
Also introduced in 1951 was the Henry J, named for Henry Kaiser. The Henry J was low-priced compact economy car designed to boost Kaiser’s falling sales. The Henry J was the new family car for America with a choice of a four or six cylinder engine, twice the carrying space, a rugged chassis, and long, low handsome design; engines were supplied by Willys, in an irony that would become evidence later. (The four cylinder was the Jeep 134 cid flathead, while the six was Willys’ 161 flathead in-line motor.) In its first year, the Henry J. flew out of the showrooms; around 82,000 were made.
A similar model, called the Allstate, was made for Sears, Roebuck for the 1952 and 1953 model years; under 1,600 of the 1952 were made, and fewer than 800 of the 1953 run left the assembly line. The Henry J. was a far more resounding success.
1951 was not a bad sales year all told, but Kaiser sales had fallen and the company had overproduced, so there was still considerable inventory left over at the end of the model year. Kaiser-Frazer delayed the introduction of the restyled 1952 Manhattan, DeLuxe, and Henry J, instead making minor trim changes, including a rear continental tire mount, to the remaining 1951s. These were rechristened the 1952 Kaiser Virginian Special and Kaiser Virginian Deluxe (for Manhattan and DeLuxe), and Vagabond (for Henry J). By February 25, 1952 the leftover 1951 inventory was gone and the new series of Kaiser Deluxe and Kaiser Manhattan was introduced. (In 1952, Kasier sold 44,570 Kaisers, and 30,543 Henry Js.)
The new 1952 Henry J Corsair was identified by the double bar grille; a grille molding that curved downwards, at either side, to meet the horizontal bar; a bronze K medallion at the center of the grille; built-in parking lights; series designation script on front fenders; and a slightly more V-shaped bumper. Only around 23,000 1952 Henry Js were made, including both Vagabond and Corsair.
The wheelbase of the Kaiser Special and Deluxe was 118.5 inches – just a little longer than the first postwar Kaisers, and far shorter than the prior year – while length increased to 208.5 inches for the Special and 210 3/8 inches for the Deluxe.
1953 - 1955: car production winds down despite the revolutionary Darrin-161
Kaiser’s passenger car business was falling, and the overproduction of 1951 and resulting issues in calendar-year 1952 hurt finances so that the changes between the 1952 Kaiser line and the 1953 line were mechanical upgrades and minor trim changes that had minimum cost, such as adding chrome strips to the tops of rear fenders to create miniature tailfins. The same factors that were slowing business for Kaiser were also hitting small automakers such as Hudson and Nash (which merged into AMC in 1954), Studebaker, and Packard.
The 1953 Kaiser Deluxe claimed to be America’s first safety-first car, based on the pop-out windshield and heavily padded dash and seat back. The Kaiser Traveler, a four door utility sedan, was advertised as a luxurious sedan that could be converted to a light duty van in just ten seconds.
The Kaiser Manhattan had basically the same styling refinements as the Kaiser Deluxe, while a Manhattan Traveler was shown in the full-line brochure, though there are no records of its production. The Manhattan series was also advertised as being the safest car on the road.
The Kaiser Dragon, a 6-cylinder 4-door car, was introduced in 1953. The 1,200 Dragons made by Kaiser were sedans with a padded top to imitate hardtops; they had a top-grade interior, upholstered trunks, and gold plated exterior trim.
The Kaiser Carolina was also introduced. The Carolinas were the opposite of the Dragons – sedan and club sedan, a stripped economy car with less chrome, plainer upholstery, and fewer standard equipment features.
The Corsair Four Henry J had few styling changes and featured the smaller L-head engine. Kaiser claimed it was the easiest car on the road to drive, handle, park, service, run, maintain, and of course the easiest to pay for. That might have been true for customers, but Kaiser seemed to be having trouble paying for development of the Henry J, with production falling to around 17,500 in 1953 and just over a thousand in its final year, 1954.
The Corsair Deluxe Six, named for the inline six engine, was a more luxurious version of the standard Corsair Four.
1953 Kaiser notes: the engine and mechanical systems were mostly carried into 1952, except for a redesigned intake manifold and a new carburetor. The three-tooth gear steering with center point control had a 38 foot turning circle. All models had a large trunk with tire well below the floor, a large windshield with 1,100 square inches of glass, gauges in a hooded cluster, padded vinyl over the upper dashboard, a bin-type glove compartment, a pistol grip handbrake, and two spoke steering wheel. The Manhattan model was the only one to feature door arm rests as standard equipment.
Randy Knox wrote about the new power steering system introduced for 1953: “The power steering was the power link type by Monroe that was used on the DeSoto. I found it light and quick similar to 1960 Chrysler's power steering (I drove a 1960 Windsor for years - I miss that car!).”
The end of the Kaiser car lines came from three major forces. The first was competitive pressure from other automakers, who had brought out their revised lines after World War II. Kaiser was the first but they did not gain a large enough following to gain dominance, and with sliding sales after 1948, there was a concern that Kaiser-Frazer would close its doors and its owners would be stuck with orphans. There was also the problem of GM and Ford overproducing and dumping cars on dealers, who often had to sell them at a loss; their large dealer bodies could do that, while Kaiser and, for that matter, Plymouth could not.
The second force was Kaiser’s timely purchase of Willys-Overland, for $63 million. Willys was known for its Jeeps, which not only had no real competitors outside of International Harvester in the United States, but had a thriving export and international licensing business (India’s Mahindra, which is planning a factory in the United States, was one licensee). Kaiser may well have compared Jeep’s relatively unique position to the increasing competition from GM, Ford, and Chrysler, and assumed it would provide a good fallback and source of cash. Thus, after buying the company and renaming it to Willys Motors, Kaiser combined its production and sales organizations. Willys lost $35 million in 1954, but would be rapidly turned around by the skilled engineers and marketers of Kaiser.
The final force in play was a fire that destroyed GM’s automatic transmission plant in Livonia; relying on that factory not only for its own cars but also for external sales, GM made Kaiser an offer it could not refuse for the big Willow Run plant. Kaiser consolidated its production at Toledo’s Jeep plant, leasing Willow Run to GM (selling it outright in 1954 for $26 million). Henry J production ended at this point, never moving to Toledo.
1953 was another year when more cars were produced than sold, with 3,5000 Manhattans still in inventory after the close of the model year; overproduction was hardly surprising when calendar-year sales fell from around 100,000 combined to 14,313 Kaisers and 7,459 Frazers.
The company continued to make an effort, moving into new territory in a final attempt to garner attention and sales. The 1954 Kaiser Special and Manhattan had many styling changes, inspired by Buick’s XP-300 show car. The Kaiser Special was an economy car, roomier than some of the most expensive cars but maintaining a luxurious interior and exterior. Kaiser cars were now available with a McCulloch (now Paxton) centrifugal supercharger, standard on the Manhattan; it took the old 226 cid “Super Sonic Six” into new territory with 140 horsepower, a very impressive number for the time.
The facelift for the 1954 model was especially impressive when one considers the shoestring budget and the use of the body through from 1951. Designers Herb Weissinger and Arnott "Buzz" Grisinger created an attractive car with new front end sheet metal, a new dash, larger rear window, and new tail lights. Kaiser took the leftover 1953 Manhattans and replaced the front end sheet metal, and the tail light assemblies, repainted them, and marketed them as the 1954 Special — a Manhattan at the price of a Special which stole some sales from the 1954 Manhattans. Once the 3,500 leftover 1953 cars (now referred to as Early Specials) were sold, Kaiser began using the 1954 body to make Specials (aka, "Late Specials") and produced 929 units before the end of the model year. In total, 5,440 1954 Manhattans were sold in that model year.
Aiding the attempted conversion to a sportier image was the Kaiser Darrin-161 sports car, named for its designer Howard Darrin. Handcrafted of Fiberglass, the Darrin weighed only 2,175 pounds and had the lowest center of gravity of any American production car. Its weight-to-power advantage and precision of balance assured split-second response at all speeds and excellent stability on turns, while sliding pocket doors and a three-position convertible top were unique body features.
It was not enough. Kaiser sold a mere 5,756 cars in 1954.
Although Kaiser decided to end passenger car production and focus on Jeep in early 1954, a 1955 model year was already in planning; and Kaiser had agreed with the Argentine government to make cars and utility vehicles in that country. Kaiser was to supply Argentina with cars made in Toledo while the Industrias Kaiser Argentina (IKA) factory was under construction in the city of Santa Isabel in the province of Cordoba. Toledo production therefore resumed in January 1955 after a six month hiatus, with domestic Manhattans being produced first. These were essentially 1954 Kaiser Manhattans with a small styling change in the hood scoop (the photo below shows a 1955 model with the 1954 scoop — the new scoops were delivered to dealers to replace on the cars that left the factory before the 1955 scoops were ready). Thus, in their final year in America, Kaiser made just over a thousand cars — and Willys, in their final year as a maker of cars, made 4,778 cars (along with various Jeeps).
During January and February, 44 two-door Manhattans were built; from January through April, 226 four-door Manhattans were built. In April, the production of domestic sedans ended and the export sedan production began. When export sedan production ended in June 1,021 cars had been built.
In August 1955 Kaiser applied for a permit to export 1,006 cars, the body dies, and related production equipment to Argentina. Fifteen export Manhattans were retained at Toledo for engineering testing and for use as executive cars.
Production began in Argentina in 1958 on the Kaiser Manhattan, now renamed the Kaiser Carabela (after a type of Spanish sailing ship) and continued through 1962, building an estimated 15,000 Kaisers. The Carabela had some stablemates in 1960-62 in the form of an Alfa Romeo 1900 sedan derivative named the Bergantin (another type of Spanish sailing ship) and an Argentine-manufactured Renault Dauphine (badged IKA Dauphine). In 1962, Rambler variants licensed from AMC would replace all of these. The final form of the AMC variants was the potent Torino, which saw a lot of racing on international circuits.
Back in the United States, Willys Motors was profitable by 1956, allowing for product line expansion. In 1962, the corporate name was changed to the Kaiser Jeep Corporation. To quote Bill Watson, after 1955, “Willys Motors never looked back, becoming a nice little source of income for the Kaisers.”
On March 3, 1964, Kaiser Jeep took over Studebaker’s military vehicle production contracts as the latter shut down their operations, acquiring Studebaker’s Chippewa Avenue Plant as part of the deal.
In 1970 American Motors bought the U.S. operations of Kaiser Jeep and, on March 31, 1971, spun the military vehicle operations off into a wholly-owned entity named AM General Corporation. AM General still builds military vehicles. IKA operations were sold to Renault in 1970, with Renault continuing to build the AMC-based IKA Torino and IKA Ambassador into the mid-1970s.
Kaiser cars: specifications and design features
- Front-wheel drive with engine, clutch, transmission, and final drive built as a unit
- 187 cid, L-head I-6 with 100 horsepower — 3 ¼ ” x 3 ¼ ” bore x stroke, 7.3:1 compression
- Drop-forged counter-weighted crankshaft with 4 main bearings, rubber engine mounts, automatic choke
- Rifle-drilled connecting rods and aluminum alloy pistons; gear shift under steering wheel
- Weather-protected hydraulic brakes with mechanical parking brake
- “Torsionetic” independent front suspension, unit-type steel chassis integral with body
- Safety glass throughout; large curved glass rear window
- Large-capacity luggage compartment in rear held the spare tire
- Heater took fresh air from the front grille
- Length 197”; Height 63 ½”; Wheelbase 117”; Width 72 ⅞”; Tires 15 x 5.50
- 6-cylinder, L-head 226 cubic inch engine
- Bore x stroke: 3 5/16” x 4 ⅜”; compression ratio 7.3:1
- Brake horsepower, Kaiser Special: 100 @ 3600 R.P.M. (all others, 112 @ 3600R.P.M.)
- Downdraft, single-throat, 1 ¼” carburetors; dual intake manifold
- 21-gallon gasoline tank
- Sealed cooling system with thermostatic temperature control
- Wide-rim disc wheels with individual tire chain slots; 7.10 x 15, extra low pressure, 4-ply cord tires
- Single dry-plate clutch, 9 ¼” diameter, 9 springs (ball throw-out bearing permanently lubricated)
- Synchronized, carburized, helically-cut gears
- Main and counter-shaft mounted on anti-friction bearings
- Steering column gear shift
- Frame: Rigid, double-channel welded box section with six cross members – three box section, two channel, and one “Z” bar cross member
- Front: 2-way, direct-acting, airplane-type shock absorbers inside coil springs; directly connect front stabilizer bar
- Rear: 2-way, direct-acting, airplane-type shock absorbers as an inverted “V” for sidewise control; Semi-elliptic spring – 53 x 1 ¾”
- Steering: 3-tooth worm and sector gear with worm mounted on dual tapered roller bearings, and sector mounted on needle roller bearings.
- 20’ turning radius
- Hotchkiss drive with three universal joints; 2-piece propeller shaft
- Midship mounting equipped with ball bearing; No rear floor tunnel
- Self-centering, floating-shoe type; hydraulic brakes on all four wheels
- Mechanical handbrake operates rear-wheel brake shoes
- Centrifuse brake drums with cast iron braking surfaces
- Shunt-wound, air-cooled generator with automatic voltage and current control
- 15-plate battery with 100 ampere hour capacity
- Vacuum spark advance on distributor
- Sealed-Beam headlights
- All-steel, welded construction
- Special insulation against heat, cold, and noise
- Safety glass throughout
- Pull-type exterior door handles; push-button interior door controls
- Spring balanced trunk lid
- Instruments grouped in front of driver for easy visibility
- Finished in metallic enamel colors to blend with color tone of upholstery
- Plastic trim on Kaiser Special, chrome trim with plastic knobs on all other Kaiser models
- Indirect lighting
- Bumper jack and tool equipment
- Dual sea-shell horns
- Two sun visors
- Dual windshield wipers with auxiliary vacuum pump
- Tilt-type, no-glare, rear-view mirror on all models except the Kaiser Special
- Turn indicator lights optional on Kaiser Special, standard on all other models
- Spare wheel
- Bumper guards
1952 Kaiser Deluxe
- High-torque 6-cylinder L-head engine
- 115 brake horsepower at 3,650 rpm; 200 lbs./ft. at 1800 R.P.M.
- Bore x stroke: 3 5/16” x 4 ⅜”; 226 cubic inches; 7.3:1 compression
- Aluminum alloy pistons
- Two compression and two oil control rings
- Removable, precision-type bearings
- Pressure lubrication to all bearings
- Positive lubrication to timing chain and valve tappets
- Three point engine mountings
- Downdraft, dual-throat carburetor with dual-plane intake manifold
- Automatic choke and manifold heat control
- Air cleaner
- Mechanical fuel pump
- Auxiliary vacuum wind-shield wiper pump (electric on Manhattan Models)
- Electrical gauge
- 17-gallon tank
- Sealed cooling system, thermostatically controlled
- Pressure-sealed radiator cap
- Cellular-type 13-quart radiator core
- Full length water jackets
- Ball-bearing, permanently sealed and lubricated pump
- Single dry-plate 9 ¼” clutch; ball throw-out bearing permanently lubricated
- Helically cut gears
- Anti-friction bearings
- Steering column gear shift
- Hotchkiss drive with two needle-bearing unviersal joints, 2 3/8 inch prop shaft
- Optional overdrive
- Optional GM Hydra-Matic automatic transmisssion
- Rigid, X-member type frame with five cross members
- Independent front wheel suspension with stabilizer bar
- Front airplane type shock absorbers inside coil springs
- Rear semi-elliptic (leaf) springs – 6 leaves 51 x 2 inches
- Rubber bushed brackets and shackles
- Rear heavy-duty airplane type shock absorbers “V” mounted to control sidesway
- Air-cooled generator with voltage and current control
- 15 plate battery with 100 ampere hour capacity
- Sealed Beam headlights
- Hydraulic, self-centering, floating-shoe type
- Mechanical handbrake
- Cast iron braking surface
- 3 tooth gear – center point control
- Turning circle 38.2’
Wheels and Tires
- Disc wheels with 5-in. rims
- Tires 6.70 x 15 inches
- Low pressure 4-ply cord
- All steel, welded construction
- Safety glass throughout
- Pull-type exterior, turn-type interior door handles
- Choice of upholstery and exterior colors
- Front and rear door arm rests
- Large trunk with tuck-away tire well below floor level
- Large glass area, windshield 1098.6 sq. in. total glass area 3647.1 sq. in.
- Speedometer and gauges grouped in hooded cluster in front of the driver
- Padded vinyl over upper portion on Manhattan
- Bin-type glove compartment
- Pistol grip hand brake
- Two-spoke steering wheel
1954 Kaiser Corsair
Starter: Ignition key turn, solenoid switch
- Flexible, dry, single plate 9.25 inch Auburn clutch
- 3 speeds forward and one reverse, with synchromesh engagement of all gears
- Capacity 2.5 U.S. pints
- Automatic overdrive
- Dual-Range (Hydra-Matic) automatic transmission available at extra cost
Rear Axle: Semi-floating hypoid rear axle; 2.5 pints capacity
Overall Gear Ratios: Conventional 3.91:1; Overdrive 4.55:1; Dual-Range (Hydra-Matic) 3.31:1
Steering: Mechanical worm and roller; Ratio 25:1; Power steering optional
- Front: Independent coil spring controlled by direct acting hydraulic shock absorbers
- Rear: Conventional semi-elliptic leaf springs controlled by direct acting hydraulic shock absorbers
Brakes: Bendix floating shoe hydraulic brakes, 11 inch drums, 176 square inches of total braking area
Wheels and Tires: Steel disc wheels, wire optional; 6.70 x 15 (4 ply) tires
- Wheelbase 118.5 inches
- Overall length 215.62 inches
- Front tread 58 inches
- Rear tread 58.75 inches
- Overall width 74.875 inches
- Height 60.25 inches
- Ground clearance 7 inches
- Turning diameter 38 feet
- Approximate shipping weight 3315 pounds
Lawrence Jones pointed out that the building formerly labelled as the Toledo plant was actually they University of Michigan Literature, Science & Arts Building at 500 S. State St. in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Here’s a current photo of the building by his co-worker.