The Rocket V-8 was enlarged from 303 to 324 ci, and the 170hp 88s were equipped with a two-barrel carb while the 185-horse Super 88s came with a four-barrel. John's Olds is powered by the 324-inch version assembled by Woody's Automotive (Omaha) with a Schneider cam, topped with an Offenhauser intake supporting Rochester Tri-power dressed with polished Edmunds air cleaners, and Mooneyes valve covers. Modern electrics, like the polished alternator and Ron Francis Wiring kit, make sure the entire package performs to modern-day specs. The original '54 Hydra-matic trans was built by Auto Trans (Bennington, NE) and used along with a stock converter and driveline.

John drove the '54 for several years in original condition and couldn't make up his mind on whether to restore it or turn it into a mild custom. We have to say we are glad he opted to customize and agree that was two years well spent.