My Car Quest

May 27, 2024

One Great American Hot Rod – The Nickel Car

by Mike –

If you are American you probably either own, or have owned, admire or want a Hot Rod. If you are not American then you may or may not like Hot Rods unless you are Swedish. For some reason the Swedes love American cars and Hot Rods.

I fall into the category of “admire or want a Hot Rod”. I have never owned one. Here is a very special ’32 Ford Hot Rod that I photographed in 2011 and 2012 that could motivate just about anyone to want a Hot Rod.

The Nickel Car (The Bob Morris Deuce Roadster)

'32 Ford Hot Rod -The Nickel Car

The DuVall windshield is what I noticed first about this beautiful Hot Rod. Most Hot Rods have a fairly flat single piece of glass for the windshield.

The DuVall windshield is split in the middle with each side sweeping back with metal in the middle holding the two pieces of glass together. In the case here the metal is nickel-plated.

'32 Ford Hot Rod -The Nickel Car

This Hot Rod was built in the 1990s by Bob Morris who used an original steel Deuce body and installed an Allen Jennings built 320 cid Ford Indy block with Gurney-Eagle heads and four downdraft Weber carburetors connected to a custom manifold. The headers were built by Mike Hamm.

'32 Ford Hot Rod -The Nickel Car engine

The three piece hood and the beautiful and unusual aluminum top were made by Steve Davis. Allen Jennings hand built the Indy-style gas filler car and he also performed much of the detail work including the hand made dash and the pedals. The chassis work was done by Pete (“P-Wood”) Eastwood of Pasadena, California.

This Hot Rod was painted by Don Thelen’s Buffalo Motor Cars, Ron Mangus handled the green leather interior and Ron Covell did some of the custom body work.

'32 Ford Hot Rod -The Nickel Car gas cap

The Nickel Car gets its name from the liberal use of nickel-plated trim which matches the Halibrand Bonneville wheels. I notice the wheels that are on the car now are different than the wheels on the Rod & Custom magazine cover and in the book mentioned below. They are now black instead of silver.

'32 Ford Hot Rod -The Nickel Car

The Nickel Car is one of “The 75: The Most Significant ’32 Ford Hot Rods” featured in the excellent book ’32 Ford Deuce: The Official 75th Anniversary Edition.

'32 Ford Hot Rod -The Nickel Car grille

This car was formerly owned by the comedian Tim Allen and is now owned by Bruce Meyer who showed it to me and shared its history. Unfortunately I could not remember everything he said so I had to read the book.

'32 Ford Hot Rod -The Nickel Car

See all of my photos of this ’32 Ford Hot Rod in the slide show below.

Let us know what you think about Hot Rods in the comments.

'32 Ford Hot Rod -The Nickel Car

The Nickel Car was on the cover of Rod & Custom in April 1993.

Rod & Custom Cover April 1993

Rod & Custom Cover April 1993

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'32 Ford Hot Rod -The Nickel Car logo

The Winged Emblem Is Made Of Solid Silver


  1. It makes sense that the Swedes love hot rods – you’ve got to have the right car to go with all those beautiful blonds! 🙂

  2. I’ll bet this Hot Rod goes fast as well as looks good!

  3. What a great purposeful stance and the details are amazing. I love the windshield – I am going to buy a hot rod now.

  4. I fell in love with hot rod scene after watching “American Graffiti”. Also got me into the 50’s rock’n roll.

  5. “American Graffiti” was a great movie – that yellow hot rod and the black ’55 Chevy driven by Harrison Ford. And oh, the 1958 Chevy driven by Ron Howard! That was a great car movie – I am going to watch it again.

  6. love that roof that sits against the duvall screen so well.

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