SEMA 2013: 1949 Chevrolet Tin Woody

Showing up to a car show in a wood-paneled hot rod is like showing up to a bikini contest with a Brazilian swimsuit model. Even if you don’t win a trophy, you’ve already won the approval of everyone else at the show. I imagine that the owner of this 1949 Chevrolet got a lot of nods of approval during the 4 days it was on display at SEMA 2013.

The car was done by “Customs by Kilkeary” from Eighty Four, Pennsylvania. The most striking feature of the car is its beautiful wood finish on the exterior. I can’t even comprehend the hours of sanding and buffing that must have gone into this thing! But I can tell you that it looked absolutely flawless in person.

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1947 Studebaker Commander Starlight Coupe

My friends and family often ask me why I go to the Scottsdale Pavilions car show so often. “Don’t you get tired of looking at the same cars all the time?” they inquire. While you do see a few of the same cars, it’s different enough to be interesting. You just never know what might roll its way into the Pavilions, and today’s post is a perfect example of what I am talking about.

This car is a 1947 Studebaker Commander Starlight Coupe. I’ve never seen one before and with only 13,299 ever produced (and far less than that surviving today), I doubt I’ll see very many more of these things around.

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Chevrolet Twin Turbo V8 Hot Rod

I ran across this Chevrolet hot rod at a church car show in Glendale. While I like the twin turbo V8 engine and the wide rear tires, there are a lot of details about the truck that leave me scratching my head. Take the sword sticking out of the driver’s side fender for example: what’s that all about?

From the back, we can see the huge aluminum wing which I think looks too new on such an old truck body. Why is it installed backwards? Is it an aesthetic thing, or does the owner really not realize that it’s backwards? The “Jesus Saves” taillights obviously reflect the owner’s personality, and while they are definitely an original idea, it’s not one that I am a fan of.

The utter simplicity of the twin turbo installation here is pretty cool. However, the flex pipe exhaust and various dice pieces accenting the engine bay make this thing look more shoddy than “DIY cool.” Don’t get me wrong, I really want to like this truck! However, the owner has gone overboard with personal touches that I feel don’t really blend together.

Still, I bet it goes like hell when he puts the pedal down!

Rare 1940 Chrysler Newport Roadster Replica

The cool thing about going to Cars and Coffee is that you never know who or what is going to roll in at any moment. Recently, I spotted a car that I did not recognize at all. I thought at first that it might have been an old Jaguar, but as it turns out, it’s even more special than that!

The car in the photo is a one-off replica of a 1940 Chrysler Newport dual cowl phaeton, a very early concept car of which only six were ever built. The original features two rows of seating whereas this car was built as a roadster. Continue reading