Hot rods are slowly becoming a new obsession of mine. A crackling V8 through short exhaust coming out the side of a small roadster and wire wheels wrapped in skinny tires has got to be the coolest form of transportation on the road, hands down. Ben Thomas builds hot rods full time at his shop, Rancho Deluxe, in Melbourne Australia. While the rest of the world progresses with new technologies and methods for making cars faster, safer, and the like; Ben has been working his way backwards. He apprenticed with Porsche for four years at age 18 and since then has stuck with the classics. By classics, I mean 30’s and 40’s era cars. I think that makes the jump from ‘classic’ to ‘OG.’ His pristine 1932 Ford is the perfect example of what hot rods are all about – small car, big engine, and a driver’s seat. It’s cool to see how hot rodding isn’t only an American institution and people from all over the world taking an interest in keeping these vehicles alive. What do you guys think? Are hot rods still the epitome of cool? Or should they be left at the diner in favor of something a little more modern?
:: Jonathan McWhorter
Classic hot rods will always have their place. These cars are the birth of DIY auto wrenching, and the history and appeal will never go away.
Glad you posted this here. Love these traditional hot rods. I will own a Model A or 30’s hot rod in my life. ITs a different kind of cool for me when compared to a serious time attack EVO or Skyline or a classic Datsun 510 or hakosuka. These old rods have the history to go with them. These cars are the first to be modified or hopped up as they called it. Because they are the OG’s of tuning/hotrodding/modifying (whatever your crew calls it), they mean that much more. Plus, they’re so different from todays cars. They are bare bones driving, seat, steering wheel, pedals, shifter, 4 wheels, and engine and some tin to cover some of it up. Pure man and machine right there! Then throw in some salt chunks flinging up into the air and landing on top of and inside the car and that’s hot rod heaven! See you on the Salt! 😉
I don’t care for many American built cars, but I absolutely LOVE these old hot rods and classic cars! Many of my relatives down in Southern California are into these builds. They have so much character and history its hard not to like them. Thanks for posting this Jmac!
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My home city, Melbourne represent! I’ve been to Rancho Deluxe for a magazine launch for http://www.fuelzine.com/ and it truly is a magical place.