Although we see many amazing cars here at RK Motors Charlotte and we’re passionate about every vehicle that comes through our doors, it’s still a rare occasion when we get to throw the word “ultimate” into the mix. But when it comes to a car like this 1941 Willys which comes with a current appraisal value of $200K and a stack of two year old build receipts that total just over $240K, the word ultimate seems very fitting. Featuring a fully detailed 502 V8, a custom leather interior and one of the most comprehensive custom builds we’ve ever seen, this screaming yellow street rod is by far the nicest Willys we’ve ever offered. So here goes: If you’re looking for the ultimate opportunity to own what might just be the ultimate street rod, it doesn’t get much better than this ’41 Willys!
Wearing a high quality fiberglass body, which was purchased as a full kit from Outlaw Performance in Avonmore, Pennsylvania, this killer ’41 Willys benefits from a hand-laminated, one piece construction technique that features an embedded Poplar floorpan and unitized steel structure. For over 25 years, Outlaw Performance has been a leading supplier of custom fiberglass bodies, and this super slick street rod is a testament to just how well they’ve honed their craft. Once the body arrived to Wooding’s Auto Body Works in Roanoke, Virginia it’s smooth and wave-free panels were expertly prepped from top to bottom, and the tidy gaps around its solid closing, solenoid activated doors were painstakingly massaged to perfection. When the gelcoat canvas was virtually flawless, a spectacular layer of bright yellow basecoat/clearcoat paint was sanded and buffed to the mirror-like shine you see today. After $52K of body work, this Willys, which is appropriately dubbed “Lemonade”, faithfully duplicates classic ’41 Willys lines with an exceptionally straight fiberglass body that is light, durable and features a level of build quality that was unimaginable 70 years ago.
Unlike most Willys builds, Lemonade makes a big impression without having to go completely over the top. There are no wild graphics, scoops or flares; just the traditional Willys shape and super clean bodywork under slick paint which makes a bold statement. At the front of the car, a new chrome grille, which can be taken out to fully service the cars radiator, is centered between original style chrome trimmed halogen headlights. At the top of the car, smoked glass is sealed with fresh black weather stripping. At the sides of the car, billet aluminum mirrors hang above stainless framed side exit exhaust pipes. And at the back of the car, chrome trimmed LED tail lights sit at the sides of a chrome tag bracket. That’s it…. A car this outrageous doesn’t need to prove itself with visual gimmicks.
When you buy a high quality body from Outlaw Performance, one of the built in features is a recessed firewall which allows the car to accept a small block Chevy, a blown big block Chevy or even a blown 426 Hemi! And when Stone Mountain Automotive of Traphill, North Carolina started working up the cars spec list, a completely modified 800 horsepower GM Performance Part’s 502 seemed like a natural fit in more ways than one. Lift the fiberglass hood and the $9K V8 is a show-worthy display of nothing but body-matched yellow surfaces and polished, chromed or stainless components that peak with a sweet looking Hilborn electronic fuel injection system. At the base of that fuel injection system, mirror-like Edelbrock square port heads, which were ported and polished by Heintz Brothers, sit at the sides of an Isky hydraulic roller cam and a yellow capped billet MSD distributor. At the top of those heads, you’ll find finned, yellow detailed aluminum valve covers, at the sides of those heads you’ll notice polished and yellow detailed wire looms which hold Taylor performance wires; and under those heads, you’ll find custom fabricated ceramic coated headers. At the front of the motor, a polished and yellow detailed serpentine system spins a polished AC compressor, a chrome alternator and a polished Edelbrock water pump below a custom fabricated, polished and yellow detailed thermostat housing. That thermostat housing receives water through a braided hose which connects to a heavy duty radiator that’s been outfitted with polished overflow tanks, three electric fans and a custom stainless radiator shroud. Wiring, which is hidden throughout the engine compartment in a series of bent stainless tubes and fabricated caps, runs to an MSD ignition system that along with other essentials, is kept in flip down easy access panels under the dash. The workmanship under the hood of this Willys is first-rate in every way. The $21K motor was built with complete serviceability in mind, and it wows show crowds just as easily as it wows passengers.
The modified firewall isn’t Outlaw Performances only custom trick. The bottom of this ’41 Willys body comes standard equipped with Pro Wheel tubs which provide a perfect fit for the cars custom chassis and giant rear tires. Power gets to those huge tires through Moser axles that are connected to a chrome Moser nine inch Ford rear end which features an aluminum center section and wicked 4.56 gears. Those gears are spun by an aluminum driveshaft which connects to a tough 4L85E 4-speed automatic transmission that’s capped by a ceramic coated Hughes Performance finned pan. At the front of the satin black chassis, an Air Ride Technologies adjustable air suspension combines with polished tubular A-arms and a chrome steering rack to provide excellent turning; and at the back of the chassis, a polished four link suspension combines with aluminum coil overs shocks to provide great grip. Exhaust is handled by custom side pipes with integrated baffling cones that are removable to adjust the sound of the car; and stops come courtesy of a four wheel disc system that sends fluid from a polished, fire wall mounted brake fluid reservoir to polished aluminum calipers which clamp drilled and slotted rotors. In front of the rear tires and you’ll find fan-equipped remote oil coolers just behind a remote, reusable oil filter and a Weldon Racing fuel pump. And under the swoopy fiberglass fenders you’ll find $3K worth of 15 inch polished aluminum Billet Specialties wheels, which are complete with yellow Willys spinners, and 195/60 Goodyear Eagle GT front and 445/50 Pro Trac rear tires. From its braided lines to its fully detailed yellow floor, this street rod is one of the most detailed Willys we’ve ever offered, and its beefy powertrain is definitely up to the massive power being churned to its meaty tires.
Naturally, no expense was spared on bringing this cars cozy cabin up to par with the rest of the build. The custom Saddle leather interior, which comes courtesy of King’s Auto Upholstery in Roanoke, Virginia, looks fantastic; and the fully power adjustable Glide Engineering seats are both comfortable and stylish. At the front of the car, a body-matched and leather topped dash holds an aluminum gauge bezel behind a full assortment of Moon Equipped Classic Instruments gauges. Below that dash a lighted and custom covered Pontiac Grand Am console flows from controls for the cars air suspension and Secret Audio system past a Lokar shifter and chrome power window switches to a combination arm rest and storage bin. At the bottom of the seats, hidden storage compartments conceal a driver’s side CD changer and a passenger’s side transmission programmer above like-new carpet and yellow detailed sill plates. And at the sides of the seats, custom door panels hang trick billet armrests with integrated door handles above stainless trimmed speakers. In front of the driver, a polished tilt steering column hangs a leather wrapped aluminum steering wheel above billet pedals and a billet hood latch; and behind the driver, a small leather lined storage space holds two more great sounding speakers above buttons for the cars Vintage Air climate control system. At the back of the car, a professionally finished trunk features: a custom leather lined fuel tank that’s contoured to match the rear wheel wells, two twelve volt batteries in hidden side compartments, air hoses which feed air from the cars suspension system air compressor, and a one-of-a-kind fuel filler bib which protects the leather wrapped tank from any rogue gasoline drops.
Every aspect of this professional build was fully documented by an owner who planned to keep the car forever. Included with the sale is a categorized binder full of build receipts for every bit of work that went into the cars construction. There’s also a second binder which contains a CD of build pictures, physical pictures of the build, and captioned photos for display. Also included is a two page, itemized price list which adds up to just over $240,000 worth on parts and labor. And last, but not least, we have a professional AAG Insurance appraisal pegging the current value of this incredible street machine at $200,000!
With massive power, attitude for miles and fit and finish that’s second to none all wrapped up in the classic Willys shape, this slick street rod is one wild world class car! Not weighed down by "me too" or trendy components it’s a car that will stand the test of time and turn heads for years to come. If you’re the kind of enthusiast who likes to experience the best of everything, this Willys is the opportunity of a lifetime!