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SEMA: 1940 Ford coupe drives 16,000 miles en route to Las Vegas

November 01, 2012|By W.J. Hennigan

LAS VEGAS -- Over at the Ford booth, with scores of people milling about, sits a dazzling copper 1940 Ford coupe made by the six-man crew at Hollywood Hot Rods in Burbank.

The classic car was built from entirely from scratch and has spent the last six months appearing at auto shows from coast to coast and in Canada. Its last stop is at the Las Vegas Convention Center at the Specialty Equipment Market Assn. trade show.

The thing is: The coupe was driven to each event. That’s a rarity in a world in which showpiece cars are treated as gently as Faberge eggs. In all, the roadster has more than 16,000 miles on it.

Photos: Highlights from the 2012 SEMA Show

“It never saw a tow truck, not one,” said Troy Ladd, Hollywood Hot Rod’s 43-year-old founder. “That’s pretty crazy for an untested car.”

The hot rod features a 430 hp Coyote 5.0 crate engine, nicknamed the “Coyote,” and a four-speed transmission. The all-new reproduction steel body came from Carpenter Industries Inc. in Concord, N.C. Carpenter is selling the ‘40 Ford coupe body, doors, and hood online for $15,450 plus shipping and handling.

In addition to the copper paint job, Hollywood Hot Rod has some well-placed chrome accents on the front grill, fenders and side mirrors. The black ultra-leather interior with copper accents was done by Elegance Auto Interiors in Upland.

Bill Hennigan gives an inside look at the SEMA car show [video]

Ladd estimated that the build cost about $180,000. It was completed for Street Rodder magazine as a road tour car.

“We chopped the body, just because we can,” Ladd said. “It took a lot of metal work, a lot of engineering, but it’s still got that vintage look.”


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