1969 Lamborghini Islero S

1969-lamborghini-islero-frontBy their very nature, supercars are produced in limited numbers, which means that not everyone who wants one can have one. Within the world of supercars, there are models which are more common than others. If you have the money, it shouldn’t be that hard to find a Porsche 911, Lamborghini Gallardo, or a Ferrari 355, 360, or 430 for sale. Then there are cars which are so rare that you cannot buy one, even if you have the money. The Lamborghini Islero is one such car.

The Islero was only manufactured in 1968 and 1969, with just 225 cars produced. These are very low numbers – there are almost twice as many Ferrari Enzos in the world as there are of these – and when was the last time you saw an Enzo?
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SEMA 2014: 1968 Chevelle ‘Blue Eyed Devil’

magnaflow-1968-chevelle-frontIt was late afternoon on the last day of the SEMA 2014 show. My feet were tired and I was looking forward to heading back to the hotel. I had spent all day looking at hundreds of custom cars and I was sure that after seeing all of these amazing rides, there was little else that could impress me that day. Well, I was wrong.

Outside of the Central Hall I took a walk past the Magnaflow Exhaust booth and spotted this gorgeous blue 1968 Chevrolet Chevelle. The combination of blue with nickel-plated chrome really grabbed my attention and I spent a few moments admiring the car. This Chevelle belongs to Steve Edling and was built by Pin Did It in Corona, CA. Continue reading

SEMA 2014: Ringbrothers 1966 Chevelle ‘Recoil’

ringbrothers-1966-chevelle-recoil-frontOne of my favorite custom car builders are the Ringbrothers (Mike and Jim). I’ve featured their work on this site in the past, including the Mustang Mach1 “Dragon” and the Blizzard Mustang. Taking a break from their usual Fords, they recently wrapped up the build of this 1966 Chevelle nicknamed “Recoil.”

Even among a convention center full of custom cars, this one really stands out. For one thing, the car has no carpet at all. In fact there’s almost nothing soft abou the interior, save for the “seats.” The seats look like a cross between a fighter jet and some kind of bizarre 18th century medical device. Whereas most car guys would bolt in a nice set of Recaros or Corbeaus, these guys completely custom fabricated their own seats – which I think are one of the most interesting parts of the car. It’s the Ringbrothers’ attention to details that really puts them in a league of their own. Continue reading

SEMA 2014: Steve Tornari’s 1967 Chevy Nova

1967-chevy-nova-meguiars-frontMeguiar’s is like the hotshot director of Hollywood in that they only invite A-list cars to their parties. This year was no exception, with Steve Tornari’s 1967 Chevrolet Nova taking center stage at the Meguiar’s booth.

This ’67 Nova was the GoodGuys Custom Street Machine of the Year for 2014, a Top 5 Finalist in the Barrett-Jackson Cup, and a Great 8 Finalist in the 2014 Detroit Autorama. Those are some extremely prestigious honors for a car!
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The Roadster Shop’s 1964 Chevelle ‘MaliciouSS’

roadster-shop-1964-chevelle-maliciouss-rearPeople love the look of old cars, but one thing they don’t love is the handling. While muscle cars like the Chevelle were big on power, their handling and braking are vastly outperformed by today’s modern cars. Upgrading these components can do a lot to improve the driveability and safety of a classic car.

There is a distinction between bolting on some parts from a catalog and making them yourself. With this 1964 Chevelle, they chose the latter.

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SEMA 2014: 1965 Mercury Comet R Racer

1965-mercury-comet-r-craftsman-frontThis car began its life as a 1965 Mercury Comet Caliente – the souped up version of the Ford Falcon. That was before the guys at Hot Rod Chassis and Cycle transformed this sizzling car into a Trans Am-inspired street machine!

The “Craftsman Comet” made its debut at SEMA 2014 at the Craftsman Tools/Stewart Warner booth. It features a Roush 427R motor with a Hillborn EFI stack and a Holley computer. This period-correct setup would have been on a high-performance race car of the day. The engine is coupled to a Hurst Driveline Tremec T-56 six-speed transmission with a Moser engineering rear end. Continue reading

SEMA 2014: 1967 Volvo Amazon ‘Swedish Ops’

1967-volvo-amazon-profileThe Ultimate Street Car Invitational is an annual shootout put together by Optima Batteries, where drivers can put their street-legal cars to the test. It’s no surprise that many of the contestants are performance cars such as Mustangs, Camaros, and Corvettes. These cars are widely supported with many aftermarket and performance parts available. In this way, Robert Jackson’s 1967 Volvo Amazon truly stands out from the crowd!

With a car like this, there is next to no aftermarket support in terms of performance. If you want to change suspension parts or build up the motor, you will find yourself making a lot of custom brackets and adapters, drilling and modifying parts to fit, and other issues that most people would rather not deal with. Continue reading

SEMA 2014: 1960 Cadillac ‘Criminal’

1960-cadillac-criminal-frontIn the 1950s and 1960s, Cadillac was the king of the automotive world with some of the most luxurious and beautiful cars that money could buy. They were often driven by movie stars, businessmen, and of course, politicians and heads of state. To own one was to own a slice of the good life, part of the American Dream.

That dream is a big part of what makes these cars appealing to hot rodders, who get a kick out of modifying these luxury boats-on-wheels into kustom kruisers. One such owner is Jessie Osborne, builder of this 1960 Cadillac “Criminal.”

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