If you’re like most of us gearheads you remember the days when modifying your hot rod meant removing extra parts, cutting a little metal and hammering out a few new curves. But as time progresses technology progresses, and what once existed as merely a backyard hobby has now grown into a hyper-competitive, multi-million dollar industry. Today, unless you have a decade and deep pockets to spare, it takes a serious plan and highly skilled craftsmen to even think about competing with the hobby’s best. And when it comes to planning and craftsmanship, it doesn’t get much better than this all-steel Ford. Built to be driven and shown, this slick little street rod is a world class custom that’ll fulfill your needs faster, and cheaper, than any car you’ve spent years idealizing. And what’s better: with names like GM, Heidts, American Speed and Billet Specialties on its specs sheet, this Goodguys award winner will outperform and outlast just about anything on the road!
A 1933 coupe that’s capped with a 1933 roadster body, this fully sorted Ford is the perfect mix of outrageous mechanical prowess and classic hot rod attitude. Its straight and solid body, a complete outfit of American Speed Speed33 steel, provides the kind of fit and finish that allows well-aligned ancillaries to function fluidly. There’s an even layer of PPG Imperial Blue two-stage that’s smooth and glossy thanks to the pros at Altered Motion of Ravenna, Ohio. And, ultimately, the car presents a unique flavor of cool that’s so well done you’ll find yourself glancing at it JUST to stop, stare and smile!
When I’m at a street rod show amid a sea of polarizing, over-the-top creations, I often find myself asking: “Is there no solidarity between show queens and rat rods?” And then, seemingly out of nowhere, a refreshing piece like this well-done Ford rolls through to quell any doubts I might’ve had about the segment’s apparent lack of sanity. At the front of the car’s body, a custom grille shell centers narrowed and chopped stainless between polished Headwinds Rocket headlights. Behind that stainless, a smooth Rootlieb hood hangs custom side blisters behind bright trim spears. Behind those blisters, shaved, remote-open doors swivel subtle gray pinstripes below small billet mirrors. Above those stripes, a body-matched roof caps polished stainless A-pillars and DOT-approved glass. And behind those pillars, frenched Lokar tail lights reflect a thoroughly massaged roll pan.
It seems the go-to hot rod motor has always been a reliable, easy to build V8. In the late ‘50s, Ford flatties were all the rage. In the late ‘70s, the Chevrolet small block was an easy swap. And now, GM’s Generation IV LS is both plentiful and powerful. Widely considered one of the world’s greatest engines, this roadster’s 2009 L76 utilizes aluminum construction, high flow heads, a high flow intake, an aggressive cam and an upgraded injection system to mix hours of thrills with miles of impressive fuel economy. At 361 horsepower and 385 lb./ft. of torque, the smooth-revving mill is certainly no slouch in the performance department. And, as with the exterior of this Ford, there are many well-planned upgrades that impress show goers and speed freaks alike. GM’s familiar fuel rail covers have been replaced by a custom engine cowl that mixes striking paint with a polished air tube. The engine’s bland serpentine system has been exchanged for a sea of bright brackets, polished pulleys and aftermarket ancillaries. There’s a beefy radiator that’s fitted with an efficient puller fan. Custom Stainless Works headers combine with braided fluid lines and fresh Taylor plug wires to detail an otherwise purpose-built performer. And, thanks to the car’s sonorous exhaust note and neck-snapping acceleration, you’ll want to bury the throttle every chance you get!
In keeping with its driver-friendly theme, this Ford’s clean chassis is stacked with first rate components that make road-tripping easy. The edgy small block twists torque through a factory-matched 6L80E 6-speed that shifts with real authority. That stalwart transmission spins stout 3.50 gears via highly polished mechanicals. Below those mechanicals, Heidts independent suspension wraps modern rack and pinion steering in Wilwood power disc brakes. At the center of the floor, custom Stainless Works exhaust funnels a deep roar through throaty turbo mufflers and a stylish, center-mount tip. Power meets the pavement thanks to polished Billet Specialties Bullets, which spin 205/40ZR17 Goodyear Eagle F1s in front of 275/45ZR20 Goodyear Eagle F1s. And details like a fresh brake booster, stainless fluid lines and a finned transmission cooler ensure everything performs as good as it looks.
Prop the car’s suicide doors and you’ll find a tasteful leather interior that was installed by Portage Trim of Ravenna, Ohio. Front and center, two modern buckets are supportive and feel good enough to take a nap on. At the edges of those seats, custom side panels hang small, sculpted armrests behind flush-fit door poppers. In front of those panels, a body-matched dash anchors attractive Classic Instruments telemetry next to a familiar Chip Foose signature. At the base of that dash, a custom console centers a small shifter on Vintage Air climate control and polished power window switches. In front of the driver, a Billet Specialties steering wheel spins a color-keyed rim around a tilting Ididit column. And behind the passengers, a reasonably sized trunk features the same soft leather and supple carpet as the aforementioned interior.
Since this Ford’s only seen two seasons on the show circuit, it’s yet to fill a trophy case. But, make no mistake, the car’s modest accolades are significant:
* 2012 Goodguys Hottest Hot Rod Award
* Candidate for the 2012 Goodguys Street Rod of the Year Award
Fully sorted and ready to turn your dreams into reality, this awesome custom carries the kind of cool swagger every car builder dreams about. From its subtle body to its comfortable cockpit, there simply aren’t many nicer cars out there. If you’re looking for a striking show queen that’s an absolute blast to own, come claim this impressive Ford!