1949 Cadillac Series 62 Custom Street Rod
Making a car look different is a pretty simple task. Making a car look more powerful, more elegant, and better proportioned than it did from the factory? That takes a talent, vision, funding, and friends in the right places — especially when you’re starting with something as graceful as a Cadillac. This ’49 Series 62 was formerly an OEM restoration purchased in North Carolina after a life on the west coast. Nearly $285,000 later, the car is a one-of-a-kind custom that has already grabbed attention on a national level. This Cadillac has definitely mastered the art of subtlety. The biggest modification is the progressive chopped top which takes 1.5 inches out of the front and 4 inches out of the rear. The new sweeping roofline is a dramatic change but the amount of work involved in that one piece alone merited a 6-page spread in Street Rod Builder. Rod Crafters Inc. out of Welcome, NC did the metal work and, looking around the car today, their talents are certainly on display. Covered in a mile-deep coat of black paint, everything lines up perfectly and makes a long-lasting first impression. The original powerplant has been replaced by a fully rebuilt 425ci V8 that, according to the car’s Street Rodder feature, turns out an impressive 405hp. The 1978-era block received some impressive new hardware that includes a set of Maximum Torque Specialties heads, an Edelbrock intake manifold, an Edelbrock 750-cfm carburetor, and a full MSD ignition system. Turn the key and the big V8 comes to life, producing an authoritative rumble through coated Sanderson headers which channel spent gases into a stainless dual exhaust system with Flowmaster mufflers. Behind the 425, a TCI-built TH400 3-speed automatic handles shifting duties with authority while a Ford 9-inch rear with highway-friendly 3.08 gears puts Caddy power to the pavement. Around the drivetrain, the suspension benefits from the addition of a full Fatman sub-frame with tubular control arms and a Fatman 4-link rear suspension. The whole setup rides on an adjustable air-ride aided by power rack-and-pinion steering and Wilwood disc brakes. Stitched together by Chuck Hanna and company at Hot Rod Interiors out of Mooresville, NC this interior blends a modern look with the heavy dosage of luxury that Cadillacs are known for. Finished in leather with crocodile and blond wood accents, this is the definition of upscale. Amenities include power windows, air conditioning, and a touchscreen JVC head unit. Few American brands stand for luxury quite like Cadillac and this custom manages to elevate that trait further than the factory could have ever imagined. With its updated 452ci V8, extensively reworked body, and Chuck Hanna interior that could make a modern Mercedes feel ashamed of itself, this is a serious car a for someone who truly appreciates what went into its creation.
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