It’s that time of year when the AMSOIL/STREET RODDER Road Tour project is wrapping up another summer of crisscrossing the country, attending events and leading the way on eight participant legs; or as we like to say around the office, “Jerry Dixey and his traveling road show proving once again hot rod parts work—because the man can break an anvil.”

Under the watchful eye of Troy Ladd of Hollywood Hot Rods (HHR) this year’s project was fabricated utilizing Miller Electric Mfg. Co. welding equipment, assembled with Eastwood tools, and a bucket full of stainless fasteners from Totally Stainless. We began with a newly minted ’40 Ford coupe sheetmetal from Dennis Carpenter Ford Restoration Parts (DC) with the assembled panels crafted into a finished body by Real Deal Steel. The end result is an entire car (body, fenders, running boards, hood, decklid, and so on). Of course, hot rodders being, well, hot rodders the fresh sheetmetal underwent a number of changes, not the least of which being a top chop. You don’t see many (if any!) ’40 coupes with chopped tops but HHR proved that it could be done “right”, yielding a subtle enhancement to the already beautiful lines that a stock ’40 was “born” with. A number of other sheetmetal changes occurred, such as the cowl vent removal, mods to the floorboard, and rear inner fenderwells, body seams filled, and a firewall makeover to allow for the modern Ford Coyote V-8.

The coupe was then neatly packaged on a Fatman Fabrications chassis that’s outfitted with their narrowed 2-inch polished stainless Mustang II IFS and custom-fabricated sway bar. In back, a Strange Engineering 9-inch rearend is fitted with 3-inch tubes with large axle bearings, and a Strange 9-inch nodular iron “S” case filled with AMSOIL Inc. gear lube and limited-slip additive. Strange also supplied the single-adjustable coilover shocks with Hypercoil springs (fronts rated at 550 pounds, while the rears are 325 pounds).

Whoa and show at the corners falls to the mounted Wilwood Engineering disc brakes and Billet Vintiques wheels with BFGoodrich rubber. The polished 88 series Lakester slugs were specked in front at 17x7 while the rears are 18x9.5 with both ends having a 5-inch backspace and a 4.5-inch bolt circle (Ford). The rubber is the performance-based BFGoodrich g-Force Super Sport A/S with the fronts measuring 225/45ZR17 (25 inches tall) and the rears measure 275/40ZR18 (27 inches tall). Steering comes by way of Flaming River power rack-and-pinion (AMSOIL Inc. steering fluid) that’s narrowed 2 inches across the mainshaft.

Nestled between the Fatman framerails is the latest and most potent Ford Racing Performance powerplant in the Coyote V-8 with its 412-plus horsepower and 400-plus lb-ft of torque. (Notice we write “plus” as it’s truly amazing what this engine can do in factory trim with a little tweaking.) Bolted to the Coyote is an enhanced Gearstar 4R70W, a wide-ratio four-speed automatic and torque converter (HGM Automotive Electronics controller) both filled with AMSOIL Inc. tranny fluid. When it comes time to shift the Gearstar it’s run through its gears via a Twist Machine paddle shifter or the Lokar Performance floor-mounted Nostalgia shifter. The Flaming River mahogany and chrome three-spoke steering wheel (13.8 inch diameter) with chrome beauty ring and horn button fits neatly over the paddles. Continuing the Coyote power rearward is a Dynotech Engineering Service driveshaft linked to the Strange 9-inch rearend equipped with Trac-Lok limited-slip 3.70 gears and 31-spline axles. Other rear suspension appointments include a special tubular sway bar built for Fatman and RideTech swivel PosiLinks. (A 2-inch narrowed tubular sway bar was also made for the Fatman IFS.)

All of this power and handling ability at some point needs to come to a halt and that’s where we look to a Wilwood brake system that begins with an under floorboard mounted Wilwood 1-inch bore master cylinder filled to the rim with AMSOIL Inc. brake fluid. The gripping components are made up of 13-inch drilled-and-slotted front and rear rotors along with a set of six-piston calipers. (The rear disc brakes are also equipped with parking brake mechanics.) The front hubs, rotors, and calipers surround a pair of Wilwood 2-inch dropped spindles.