Buy It! Tom McMullen’s ’32 Ford is probably the most iconic hot rod ever
|driving.ca 29 Jun 2020 at 18:28|
When you think of a hot rod, you likely picture a pre-war Ford convertible with the fenders removed and large mag wheels. You’re also probably thinking flames on the front, and a Chevy V8 swapped in. It’s the stuff of dreams, and an imagine endlessly copied for movies, magazines, and replica vehicles.
However, that idea had to come from somewhere. There had to be a first, and this is it: Tom McMullen’s 1932 Ford Roadster, and it’s coming up for sale. Most of the features are obvious because they’ve been copied over and over throughout history, but we’ll give you the rundown, anyway.
The vehicle came into McMullen’s possession in 1958, it already had a 283 cubic-inch Chevy engine. The flames and pinstriping were originally added by legendary painter Ed “Big Daddy” Roth. A pressurized front-mounted fuel tank was added, along with a Halibrand quick-change rear end. In 1963, McMullen stuffed a 327 cubic-inch small block under the be-flamed hood, with a GMC 4:71 supercharger that feeds into two four-barrel carburetors. This was sent to the rear wheels via four-speed manual transmission from a ’39 Ford.
This all helped McMullen’s creation reach set a top speed record of 167 mph (269 km/h) for street roadsters, at El Mirage Dry Lake and Bonneville in 1964. After that, a Ford 427 wedge was installed in the vehicle, but that proved too hairy to drive on the street.
McMullen sold the ’32 Ford for just $5,000 in 1969 to fund another business venture , but it’s being sold by , restored to 1963 specification with a supercharged Chevy small block. Previously, it sold for $700,000, and the starting price is estimated to be $400,000 this time around.