2012 Street Rodder Road Tour 1940 Ford Coupe
From Dakota Digital
What if you could build a new dream car every year? Can you imagine that? You just screwed together a ’55 Chevy with a killer W-motor, but you’re already feeling like a street rod. Perhaps a ’40 Ford coupe with a new Ford Coyote crate engine would be fun. Nice change of pace anyways. If this was reality for you, you’d be A. the envy of car people everywhere, or B. Street Rodder Magazine.
For those unfamiliar with the Street Rodder Road Tour program, each year a new hot rod is put together to showcase top-notch parts from vendors as well as a shop that turns out quality work. Once the car is done, a lucky magazine staffer jumps in and drives the new rod across the country. Yes, it is too good to be true.
The Road Tour car is somewhat a barometer of the industry. Right now, there is a push towards cars being usable; that is, they need to do everything, all at once, and look good. It’s gotta be quick, handle, get decent MPG, have AC and a nice interior. Easy. With so many eyes on the Road Tour car, it’s a showcase for the latest and greatest, such as the all-new ’40 Ford coupe body from Dennis Carpenter. How cool is that? I mean, call them up, and boop! You’ve got a perfect, rust free body. Skip right to the fun part! No one can deny that the Chevy LS-family of engines has plotted a course for world domination. For nearly a decade it seemed the new small block couldn’t be stopped, until last year that is, when the Blue Oval boys loaded up their guns with a 21st-century incarnation of the 5.0L. The Ford Coyote engine is shaping up to be a worthy adversary to the Chevy small block, so the 2012 Road Tour car was fitted with a sparkly new engine in a box straight from the Ford Racing mother ship. Gearstar prescribed a six-speed auto for double-digit MPG ratings as well as mind bending acceleration.
Fatman Fabrications has been in game a long time, offering suspension solutions for hot rods for years. Stance, ride quality and handling have traditionally been the focus of street rod underpinnings, in that order. Nowadays, Fatman gives equal helpings of all three and dispatched an all-new chassis for the coupe. The rest of the build sheet for the ’40 reads like your Christmas wish list: Aeromotive, Comp Cams, FAST, Painless, PPG, Strange, U.S. Radiator, Vintage Air, Wilwood and many more.
Troy Ladd and the rest of the crew at Hollywood Hot Rods have been in the hot rod news lately earning a rep for turning out really well-built, traditional rods. After inspecting the all-new ’40, Ladd decided it needed a little something to set it apart. A one-inch chop is certainly a lot of work, but the finished product really sets the car off as well as confirms that Hollywood Hot Rods can hold it down.
With last year’s Road Tour car successfully sporting a set of the new VHX instruments, we were more than happy to offer up another delicious direct-fit system for 2012. Designed for the stock dash in the ‘40 and now available to everyone, we started from scratch by machining and chroming an aluminum bezel to fit the iconic dashboard like a glove. With six gauges and more in the stock location, VHX-40F is a perfect fit for the all-conquering Road Tour car.
Yes, the bronze beauty on these pages is a masterpiece, a collection of the best the industry has to offer, but it’s also a proven driver, going cross country stopping at countless shows, spreading street rod cheer. We were lucky enough to have this all-new hot rod trolling our parking lot this past July as the Road Tour gang made the annual pilgrimage to the NSRA Street Rod Nationals in Kentucky. It looks even better in person. As great as the Hollywood Hot Rods-built coupe is, you should know that the staffers at Street Rodder are already laying awake dreaming up next year’s build. Buckle up dear readers; we’re in for a treat!
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