- 413 cubic inch Chevrolet V8 / 576 horsepower
- Turbo-Hydramatic 350 3-speed automatic transmission / 4,000 RPM stall
- Ford 9-inch rear end / 3.70 gears
- Custom chassis and suspension
- Unisteer power rack-and-pinion steering
- 4-wheel power disc brakes
- 15-inch Billet Specialties wheels
- Dennis Taylor Reproductions fiberglass body
- Two-tone metallic paint
- Custom leather interior
Like fashion, the collector car market is cyclical. And, like fashion staples, there are some cars that never go out of style. For instance, you just can't go wrong with a comfortable pair of jeans. Likewise, you'll always be admired when you pull up in a ground-pounding Willys. Back in 1941, at a small automaker that was about to go through its second bankruptcy, no one would have guessed that, 73 years later, we'd think a black and silver Americar is one of the coolest street rods in our showroom. But alas, great design endures. And when great design is mixed with modern technology, it's a sure-fire bet for success! Featuring an impressive roster of components, a supple leather interior and 413 cubic inches of big block V8, this head-turning custom is poised to draw big attention and take home big trophies. It's also completely sorted, scary fast and amazingly comfortable. Forget all that nonsensical talk about boring coupes and trendy roadsters owning the next cruise season, this impressive Willys is your go-to piece for stopping the show!
Okay, so it's not really an Americar and, naturally, that paint isn't a traditional single-stage that's going to dull and wash off in four years. Instead, this Willys is a high quality fiberglass tribute that's been prepped, dipped in modern two-stage and finished to a much higher standard than anything that rolled off a pre-war assembly line. The car's lightweight body was supplied by Dennis Taylor Reproductions. And while its shape is ultra-traditional, some new tweaks were added to provide a unique personality. Take a look at our high resolution photos and you'll see that every panel is as flat as Kansas, with a shine that's only found on five-figure hot rods. Custom pinstriping runs along the body's horizontal lines to separate the upper and lower halves of a metallic, two-tone paint scheme. And even though there's no mistaking a Willys, this coupe has an identity all its own thanks to careful workmanship and excellent attention to detail.
When you build a stunning, ground-hugging street rod, it doesn't take much to make the car pop. That's why professional customs like this fully sorted coupe feature just enough high quality bolt-ons to create a classy and timeless appearance. At the front of the car, an intricate hood bulges above a polished grille and two original-style headlights. Behind that hood, lightly tinted glass and modern power windows sit between stylish sport mirrors. At the sides of that glass, remote suicide doors hang shaved handles in front of tough aluminum hinges. Behind those doors, a traditional trunk, old school tail lights and an “AMERICAR” branded bumper add a healthy dose of function to some of the best automotive form ever created. And overall, this car is a simple, smooth classic that carries the true hallmarks of enduring design.
One thing you won't have to worry about in this Willys is power. Thanks to a big block 402, which has been punched out 11 cubic inches, this 576 horsepower monster is more than just some pretty parking lot poseur! That mill, professionally built by Big Al's Toy Box in Gaylordsville, Connecticut, eats through a pair of coated Edelbrocks, which link under a polished shotgun intake. At the base of those carburetors, a polished and Chevrolet-branded supercharger rides between polished valve covers, Pro Comp aluminum heads and hot MSD 6AL ignition. That ignition jolts an aftermarket distributor that's outfitted with an MSD Blaster coil, Accel High Temp Super Stock cables and heavy duty wire looms. That distributor spins thanks to a high quality Comp roller cam, which rides between a balanced GM crank and proven PRW roller rocker arms. Cooling is provided by a custom PCR radiator, which fronts two electric puller fans and a chrome overflow tank. Exhaust is handled by short headers, which flow to either traditional tail pipes or electronic cut-outs. And charging is provided by a polished alternator that, along with a coated PRW water pump, spins via polished pulleys and polished brackets. Aesthetically, this Willys' clean engine bay is a very impressive showpiece that's basically a sea of first rate hardware; from its chrome breathers and Mr. Gasket Thermocap all the way to its Melling oil pump and braided fluid hoses. And overall, the car displays solid workmanship that conveys a quality, tailored demeanor.
Behind that fire-breathing engine, a modified Turbo-Hydramatic 350 3-speed twists torque through a 4,000 RPM stall converter to a Ford 9-inch rear end and big, 3.70 gears. That first class drivetrain is held off the ground by a custom, square-tube chassis, which is bathed in a smooth layer of Satin Black paint. At the front of that chassis, a rugged Heidts suspension, which is equipped with Unisteer rack and pinion steering and adjustable QA1 coil-overs, mixes a pleasant ride with vintage feel. At the back of the chassis, a proven 4-link suspension utilizes two more adjustable QA1s to provide drag strip-worthy launches. Serious stops counter the car's serious speed via power-assisted brakes that wrap GM-style calipers around drilled and slotted rotors. Exhaust duties are handled by custom, stainless-tipped pipes that, with the flip of a switch, growl through Flowmaster Hushpower mufflers. And keeping all this muscle rolling down the road is a slick set of Billet Specialties 15s, which spin 205/65 Uniroyal Tiger Paws in front of 31x16.50 Mickey Thompson Sportsmans. With a beefy drivetrain that's been reliably built to be both tough and fun to drive, this '41 Willys is the real deal. And with its clean floors and super impressive hardware, it'll fare well on any pavement you chose to scorch.
Pop the car's lightweight doors and you'll reveal a custom-tailored cabin that makes good use of bright red leather. Modern GM buckets are coddled by color-keyed lap belts. Dolphin supplied the classy looking gauges, which are arrayed across a custom-pinstriped dash. A beefy Sunpro Super Tach III aligns itself perfectly between a small fire extinguisher, chrome rearview mirror and B&M ratchet shifter. Billet door handles and small power window switches detail completely custom side panels. The primary controls, a chrome Grant wheel, billet pedals and a tilting Ididit steering column, make it very easy to get very comfortable. And a fully upholstered trunk rounds out a very nice build.
The sale of this impressive street rod includes engine specs and a dyno sheet.
The Willys is an icon, no doubt about that. And this tailored Americar puts a unique spin on a very familiar face. The car's workmanship is impressive, and I can't imagine what it would cost to build something like this from the ground up. If you're looking for a fully-sorted bruiser that's blindingly fast and aesthetically exhilarating, come in and claim your next hot rod!
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