1970s Dodge Ram Custom Van

dodge-van-custom-dual-tandem-axleThe 1970s are remembered today as a decade of excess, and nothing embodies that mindset greater than the cars that people were driving. This was the era that gave us the Dukes of Hazzard, Smokey and the Bandit, and the original “Gone in 60 Seconds.”

There was another craze during the 1970s: custom vans. People would take full-size vans from Ford, Chevrolet, and Dodge and trick them out with shag carpet, a stereo system, custom paint and wheels, custom interior, CB radio, and even accessories like mini fridges!

“Vanning” exploded in popularity and was featured in movies and songs of the era. Like vinyl records and most things from the 1970s, “street vans” fell out of fashion to fade into obscurity, only to see a small revival today.

This 1970s-era Dodge Ram van may be a relic of that era. It looks to have been converted to a camper/motorhome at one point, and is now languishing on a side street. The interesting thing about this van is its dual rear axle setup – something I have not seen before and can find very little about on the Internet. I suspect it may have been a custom modification.

Hyundai Genesis Coupe with LS2 V8 Swap

hyundai-genesis-coupe-ls2-frontWe’re kicking off “engine swap week” with this Hyundai Genesis Coupe that I spotted at Cars and Coffee in Scottsdale. Someone has taken this South Korean coupe and stuffed a big ol’ American V8 under the hood!

Swapping a 6.0L LS2 engine into your Hyundai is a sure-fire way to attract haters, especially when it’s covered with stickers, a huge wing, and a missing rear bumper. But this car is over-the-top in so many ways that I’ve decided it must have been done ironically.

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Jet Industries Electravan 600

jet-electravan-600-profileElectric cars such as the Tesla Model S and Nissan Leaf are all the rage these days. These sexy cars offer zero emissions, good fuel economy, and near-silent operation. But there was a time not long ago when electric vehicles were not sexy or cool.

Early electric vehicles were converted from gasoline-powered vehicles using primitive chargers and batteries. They were a novelty item, mostly reserved for hippies and fringe-thinkers. They lacked the mass-market appeal of today’s sophisticated alt-fuel vehicles. Let’s revisit those times for a moment to take a look at once such vehicle: the Electravan.

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Rare Bird.. Er Cat 1981 Mercury Cougar XR7 (Craigslist)

1981-Mercury-Cougar-XR7-01-whiteThe Mercury Cougar had a very strange 5th generation.  Only being around for the 1980-1982 model years it was short lived but included a sedan and for a its last year a wagon (spotted one a while back).  The car as a whole along with the 94hp I6 six on this XR7 pleased no one.  Ford knew this and abandoned the whole situation by dumping this setup for another design also on the Fox platform.  The next Cougars and Thunderbirds launched the Ford aero models. Continue reading

78-83 Toyota Hilux Extended Cab Long Wheelbase Dually Truck

I spotted this thing stuck in rush hour traffic as I cruised on past in the HOV lane.  I can’t find much about it, it may have even been imported from Mexico?  It does have Arizona plates on it so who knows.  There probably aren’t too many like this out there so go ahead and soak it in. Continue reading

1995 Callaway SuperNatural Camaro C8 (Craigslist)

In the early 90’s Callaway went for the cash grab that was the 4th Gen Camaro/Firebird. They offered a body kit known as the ‘CamAeroBody’ but also offered a completely made over car known as the ‘Callaway SuperNatural Camaro C8’.  They gave it a 383 that could manage itself to 60 in 4.7 seconds which is pretty impressive, but not for $60,000 ($93,600 in 2014). Continue reading

There’s two of these motherfuckers.

I shit you not. There’s two of these things sitting in garages asking for princely sums of money. If you forgot (because I tend to post so infrequently) you can find the article HERE where I said you’d never see another of these again. Boy, was I wrong.

You can also find a bunch of old dudes disliking it’s striking similarity to their own 80’s Magnum PI mobiles right HERE. They’re probably bent out of shape because back in the day the Ferrari regularly got worked on by even the lowliest of small block chevy mills, like the crossfire 350 in this 1984 Corvette. I KID, I KID. But seriously, guys, yes the Stiletto is uglier than a Ferrari. Continue reading