Who here remembers drive-in theaters, sock hops, and having a burger with your best girl down at the local diner? Some of these events happened just before I was born, but they all formed a part of the tradition I had growing up. I definitely remember drive-ins and cruises, these were an important part of my youth and a series of memories I cherish. Mrs. Toad and I often talk about how strong associations can be in life, and how sometimes hearing a song or seeing something from your past can immediately take you back in time. There are certain things that really embody this concept, and some of them are widely recognized. Like, for example, the classic ’57 Chevy.
As cruising and hot-rods became popular in culture in the 50’s and 60’s, certain models of car really embodied the spirit. The small-block Chevrolet V8 engine was a pioneer of the time, with a limited amount of moving parts and a controversial push-rod design, this engine quickly proved to be both highly reliable as well as the perfect platform with which to create vast amounts of power for relatively cheap. Ford and Dodge were soon to follow with their own designs, and the entire concept of drag-racing and cruising on a Saturday night was born. It didn’t take long for this all to become part of the vernacular of society.
Chrome, detailed trim and solid flowing lines were all found in the ’57 Chevy. The iconic fins at the back of the car were soon to disappear in car design, yet have left an indelible mark on enthusiasts far and wide. This is a car that makes you want to run your hands down the fender. Cubic inches were the prime force used to get this car down the track in a quick hurry. And these cars deliver this with enthusiasm and passion.
This is a strong looking car, almost menacing. It is definitely at home cruising the strip at an idle, but if let loose it will take off like a scared rabbit in a plume of tire smoke, leaving the passerby to wonder exactly what just happened.
Many of the styling cues were taken after the burgeoning jet era. The two features on the hood vaguely resemble jet intakes and fins, and the well-known rear fins on the car are derived directly from airplanes. The entire jet age was upon us and we all reveled in how fast technology was advancing, and dreamed of better times for us and our families. This era came and went, but many of the facets of the time remain today.
A growing trend over the recent years has been to find a platform that meant something to you growing up and to rebuild and refurbish these old cars using the very latest drivetrain technologies. This blends the best of both worlds inasmuch as you can get huge amounts of power delivered to the ground in a very reliable manner, and wrap all that up in some of the most beautiful bodywork you’ve ever seen. By and large many aficionados try to create this blend subtly, to create a car the evokes memories of the past. This particular ’57 Chevy has a modern-day LS1 Corvette engine and 6 speed transmission, along with all sorts of contemporary technologies to bring added safety and comfort. These cars are typically referred to in today’s circles as Retro-Mods.
Much like a kid who’s just been given $100 to go to the candy store, I almost always come away from these encounters with sticky hands and a sweet taste in my mouth. I can’t help myself, it’s much bigger than me… I find the more time you spend with cars like this, the more wonderful details you find that come to life. Each builder brings their own personality to forging these gems, making sure that no two cars are remotely close to the same. This all helps to create both a sense of nostalgia as well as a sense of wonder.
If you have any stories of cruisin’ to the drive-in with your best girl, please feel free to share it below! We really appreciate your visit today and always love to hear from all our visitors.