any chance it's just mislabeled?

It looks like a Signet lens the way it's written out on the beauty ring "Kodak Ektar Lens" and not just "Kodak Ektar"

How about a Motormatic 44mm f/2.8 tessar Ektanar that was changed from front cell focussing to unit focussing making it Ektar quality and not 2nd tier Ektanar
I guess the problem with that is the 1953 date.

maybe military? "speculation exists that this camera was a civilized version of a camera originally designed for the military"
There are army/air force signet 35's but perhaps there were earlier cameras before even those came out that the Signet 35 was based ..but then 1953 is 2 years into the 35's production

Brian Wallen
Early 50mm f/2.8 Aluminum signet lenses. have several 4-5 one is incomplete
A couple are tagges "master" SNs are all zeros.

Kodak assigned serial numbers to Anastigmat Special/Anastar and Ektar lens. Prior to about 1940 it used a single numeric sequence, 54321, while serial numbers after that were alpha-numeric, two letters and three or four numbers -- ES3682. The letters in the U. S. were mapped to the word (sic) "CAMEROSITY", while in England, the mapping was to "CUMBERLAND".

Chance it's 1963? What does CUMBERLAND means? There were lenses/cameras made in UK? Also France/Brazil ...?
End of the line for Signet series was the 80 1962 with their Thorium Ektanars which were triplets

My element appears to be tessar front two elements group

I took the front element off the 814 and the second element threads on to the first unlike mine which can't be or is very hard to unscrew
When the 814 is threaded on the reflections act exactly like my front element
so a tessar design which I know the 814 to be
The 814 uses a 38mm f/2.8 "Kodak Ektra Lens"

Coating is the yellow/pink looking variety like on the Instamatic 814 1968-1970 using Thorium which stains

and of course SN#'s don't simply begin at 1 so who knows ..but seems odd.