Dodge Roadster Pickup Hot Rod
This fabulous period hot rod was built during the late 1950s by San Diego firefighter and San Diego Prowlers car club member Joe Pironello, who was inspired by the T-buckets of Norm Grabowski and Tommy Ivo. It was built on a modified ’28 Ford Model A frame with a lightweight tubular front axle, a ’37 Ford rear axle and front and rear transverse leaf springs for underpinnings. The steering box was from a ’41 Willys, and ’40 Ford hydraulic drum brakes provided stopping power. An Edelbrock six-carb intake and chrome side pipes topped the hot Corvette 283 V-8.
The forward-raked bodywork combined the front half of a ’22 or ’23 Dodge touring car, mated to a widened ’27 Ford Model T pickup bed. Other cool features included a Model T grille shell, an original winged Moto Meter, 1912 Model T kerosene lantern taillights, white-outlined body panels, white upholstery and a white top, along with chrome steelies, “baby moon” hubcaps and whitewall tires with “pie-crust” rear slicks.
Universal Studios selected it for use in The Lively Set, starring James Darren, Pamela Tiffen, Doug McClure and Joanie Sommers. Stunt drivers included Mickey Thompson, Duane “Pancho” Carter and Billy Krause. The book Hot Rod Milestones, written by Ken Gross and Robert Genat, states that filming took one month and that Joe Pironello said the filming "was a blast and a hassle."
This car was auctioned off by RM Auctions in January of 2011 at the Arizona Biltmore Resort & Spa, Phoenix, Arizona.
283 cu. in. Chevrolet Corvette V-8 engine with six Stromberg 97 two-barrel carburetors, Borg-Warner T5 five-speed manual transmission with overdrive, 1937 Ford V-8/60 lightweight tubular front axle with transverse leaf spring, 1937 Ford rear axle with transverse leaf spring, and 1940 Ford four-wheel hydraulic drum brakes.
Source: RM Auctions