The Roadster Shop’s 1970 Camaro ‘Rampage’

roadster-shop-1970-camaro-rampage-rearWhen building a custom car, a number of things have to be considered. Will it need air conditioning? Will the suspension be set up for the street or for the drag strip? Where is the engine’s powerband? A lot of choices have to be made in order to dial a car in for its chosen application.

For most people, the luxury of owning a track-only car is not something they can afford. That means compromises need to be made so that the car can be streetable as well. This 1970 Camaro “Rampage” is a car that makes no compromises – it is a race car built for the track. Continue reading

SEMA 2014: JF Kustoms 1964 Buick Riviera

jf-kustoms-1964-riviera-sideIn every discipline there is a high award or honor that is bestowed upon those who have distinguished themselves from the crowd. Music has the Grammy award, acting has the Oscar award, and physics has the Nobel Prize.

In the world of hot rodding, the Ridler Award is among the most prestigious honors a car builder can receive. It is a moment of great pride and triumph for the shop who beats out all of the other shops and captures the award. In 2014, the Ridler Award went to JF Kustoms for this 1964 Buick Riviera nicknamed “Rivision.”

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SEMA 2014: Foose 1960 Ford Starliner

foose-1960-ford-starliner-profileFrom his early days as a designer for Boyd Coddington to the hit TV show Overhaulin‘, it’s safe to say that Chip Foose is one of the most recognized faces in the world of hot rodding. His automotive creations have grown beyond custom cars to include wheels, architecture, and even art!

Whether you love him or hate him, there is no denying that Chip Foose brings a lot of attention to the hobby of custom car building. One of his recent builds was this 1960 Ford Starliner coupe on display at the BASF booth at SEMA 2014.

The whole car looked absolutely flawless in BASF Metallic Grey paint from their Glasurit 90-series. It was wearing a set of Foose Heritage wheels which are 19″ up front and 20″ in the rear. But this car isn’t just a simple respray with some new shoes…it has a big surprise in the typical Foose fashion. Continue reading

SEMA 2014: Chevrolet Super C10 by Chuck Mallett

Super c10 002At the Kooks booth I came across a real interesting specimen that despite it’s retro leanings, really stands out. I find this interesting for two reasons: The first being that we seem to be coming to the end of the current manufacturer’s retro styling craze; second being that I’m particularly jaded when it comes to this type of treatment, whether it’s old-to-new or new-to-old. Continue reading

SEMA 2014: Car Fix 1971 Chevrolet Camaro

1971-camaro-stabil-rearBuilding a custom car is an exciting project because it gives the owner a chance to personalize it with their own style. The choice of color, wheels, and any performance modifications will reflect the personality of the owner – and no two owners seem to share the same tastes. That’s why I found it odd that STA-BIL 360 had this custom 1971 Chevrolet Camaro as a grand prize in their booth at SEMA 2014.

The car was built by Jared Zimmerman and Lou Santiago from the TV show Car Fix on the Velocity Network. Working 12 hours a day for almost five months, these guys transformed a 1971 Camaro into a powerful custom street machine. The value of the car has been appraised at $98,000 dollars. Continue reading

1967 Ford Fairlane ‘Black Ops’ by Steve Strope

1967-fairlane-steve-strope-rearSteve Strope of Pure Vision Design was in the spotlight a few years ago with the Martini Mustang. He was back at SEMA 2014 with a real head turner, and quite possibly my favorite car of the whole show! This 1967 Ford Fairlane is called “Black Ops” and it was on display at the Dynamat/Dynamic Control booth in the Central Hall.

The name Black Ops warrants an explanation, seeing as the car is not painted black, but rather, a very pretty blue and gold. The concept for this car was to build an “experimental” racer as it might have been built back in the late 1960s. It is not based on any particular car that actually existed, but sought to recreate a “factory test mule” using period-correct parts and technologies. Continue reading

SEMA 2014: Griffin Radiator 1968 Ford Mustang

sema-2014-griffin-mustang-frontThere was a lot of vintage Ford sheet metal on display at SEMA 2014, and I’m embarrassed to say that this one almost slipped by me! This 1968 Ford Mustang was just steps away from the Mustang at the Wilwood booth, and I almost didn’t see it. This dark green beauty was on display at the Griffin Radiator booth.

Griffin is a South Carolina-based company that has been making performance aluminum radiators since 1981. The 1968 Mustang in their booth appears to be most of the way through a major restoration. It’s common to see cars at SEMA that aren’t quite done yet.

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