Welcome back to Driven, where we feature cool cars found in hotel parking lots that are actually driven! This time we feature something that’s common at car shows, but uncommon for cross-country transportation: A 1923-style Model T. This particular one is riddled with clues that leads me to believe that it’s recently been brought back from the dead.
Let’s begin with the engine. As far as I can tell by the casting marks on the front of the head and the block identification (casting 4010207) on the back, the engine was a L82 350. The orange paint and it’s condition leads me to believe that the whole short block is of the same vintage. The Intake manifold, Carb, tall valve covers, and bug scoop are all brand new though. Coupled with the gear drive I heard when it drove off, the owner seems to want to give off the appearance of a blower.
The chassis and rearend also look to be vintage, as is the motorcycle skinny wheel and fat back wheel combo. The paint scheme on the frame and rear end is a faded a faded black with red pinstripes and little cherries. However the body has a brand new paint job, (interior looks pretty snazzy too) and carries cheeky logos on the side, which are beginning to gain traction as a trend again.
The plates on the back are from Montana, but the vin tag on the frame is from Nevada. So this car has been places for sure. I love that this thing is still haunting the streets after all these years, let alone the streets of at least three of our fifty states. I don’t love the big rear wheels, or the paint job. The L82 made about 220hp stock and on top of it’s smoggy short block lays a top end made for something that can really turn some revs, which is blatantly a total mismatch. The gear drive is corny and more harm than good.
Despite all that this car probably weighs less than a ton and would haul ass with an 88hp 2.3L Ford. So I’m sure it’s embarrassed a few powerful cars on the road with it’s favorable power-to-weight ratio. Check out the gallery for more shots of this awesome interstate traveler.