Southern California hot rodders are raised to believe that we live in the center of the hot rodding universe, where trends are born and where all the finest cars can be found. That’s actually in our school textbooks. So naturally, we feel a little confused when we drive across the desert to Scottsdale, Arizona, for the Goodguys Spring Nationals (in March) or the Goodguys Southwest Nationals (in November) and find ourselves surrounded by thousands of exceptional rods, customs, classic trucks, and muscle cars that aren’t from California! We’re getting used to it though.

We were back at WestWorld of Scottsdale for the second-to-last Goodguys show of the year. The new Goodguys event in Del Mar means that Scottsdale isn’t their season finale anymore, but Goodguys still uses this show to award the Muscle Car of the Year and to display other “Of The Year” winners from the season, including Hot Rod of the Year.

Other attractions include the humongous exhibitor building, crowded with aftermarket manufacturers promoting their newest products, and the always-fantastic swap meet with not-so-new but valuable merchandise. In between the two are 19 acres filled with approximately 2,000 show cars of every description. Here are some of our favorites. Not every car in this article is from Arizona, but not one of them is from California. That’s humbling for us, but we’ll get over it.

Painless Performance Products Presents STREET RODDER TOP 100

For the Top 100 program, STREET RODDER attends 10 particular car shows each year and picks 10 vehicles at each to make up the Top 100. For more on where those shows are and how they’re voted on, check www.streetrodder.com.

Tech Tip

Harness loom

PowerBraid loom from Painless is an open-weave, high-temperature loom, which will allow moisture to pass through and not puddle inside like a conventional loom. PowerBraid is also split and has great memory so installation is simple. This black covering will enhance any project.

John Greenwood Sun Lake, AZ

’47 Ford Club Coupe

The ’47 was a team effort between John Greenwood (a body and fender guy) and his son-in-law, Bob Youngsma (a mechanical guy). When he bought it online sight unseen, John discovered the coupe was as pristine as advertised. He and Youngsma pulled off the front and rebuilt everything from the firewall forward. The straight-axle frontend was replaced by a Mustang II independent suspension. Interior upgrades include Pontiac Sunbird seats, bright red upholstery, a Flaming River shifter column, and a set of Auto Meter gauges.

The engine compartment was finished with handbuilt inner aprons and packed with a 302ci Ford Racing crate engine, backed by a C4 transmission and Ford 8-inch rearend.

“I wanted it to be a little different than some of the other ’47s I’ve seen,” John told us. He certainly succeeded.