Whenever hot rodders get together to bench race two questions invariably come up: Whatever happened to such-and-such car? and How can I find one of these old, abandoned hot rods? Lost Hot Rods answers both questions by finding nearly 100 lost hot rods, custom cars, and a few dragsters that were either famous in the ’50s or ’60s from being featured on magazine covers or winning major car shows, and then disappeared, or else are lost, simply because they’ve never been seen in public again. In Lost Hot Rods, we attempt to answer the questions about whatever happened to these great cars. We’re not talking about vintage tin sitting in the desert or woods, or old cars parked in farm fields. Nearly all of these vintage rods and customs were found in urban or suburban garages–possibly right in your neighborhood–where they were parked years ago, maybe to save, perhaps torn apart for a rebuild, or in many cases they are projects that were started years ago and just never finished. The condition of such finds ranges from musty piles of parts, to dusty and cobwebbed originals, to pristine, still-show-quality beauties. We also show cars that have been located by others, either as-is or now in beautiful restored condition. Either way, we tell the process of finding such vehicles, giving many tips on how you can find them, too.
This isn’t a book about seeking these cars for profit. What’s more important, and fun, is the search itself. If, when you find such a long-lost rod or custom, it turns out that it is available and you can afford to acquire it and put it back on the road and enjoy it, so much the better. But just finding them; finally answering that Whatever happened to…? question is the main goal. In most cases we show vintage photos of the car in its heyday, along with where and how it looks today.
But what makes this venture doubly fun, and what separates this book from others, is that we are not just looking for old cars or even collector cars hidden away. Finding a vintage Corvette, or Porsche, or even a gennie Model A or Model T stashed in a garage or barn is cool. But hot rods and custom cars are very different–literally. Each one is unique. So each of these cars has its own unique story, it’s own personal history, which makes Lost Hot Rods a special collection of stories as well as Then and Now images.