Sunday, February 24, 2013

Calgary World of Wheels 2013

For 47 years the World of Wheels show has gathered Canada's best customs and classics in Calgary, Alberta. This year's show was filled with muscle cars, hot rods, kustoms and a few modern high performance rides. There was little in the way of Italian exotica, but the hall was full of cars waiting for the beautiful Canadian summer.

Old school hot rods were well represented at the event. The workmanship on the metal-flake gold roadster was particularly striking.

The owner of this NSU had the creative idea to drop in a drivetrain from a Smart Fortwo. Not every engine swap has to be a barnstormer and the swap has turned this little NSU into a more usable driver. The Smart wheels work surprisingly well with the 60's bodystyle.

This 1960 Austin-Healey "bugeye" Sprite was certainly happy to see everyone at the show. These lilliputian sportscars can make TR6's look like monster trucks. With no outside door handles, no side windows and in some cases no heater; these cars deliver a truly undiluted driving experience.

With prizes being awarded for best club display, some clubs went all out to impress the crowd and judges. Last year the Mopar guys built a mock dealership as their display. Not to be outdone, the Pontiac crew have made this Mexican restaurant themed display complete with matching hats and uniforms. Well done!

In addition to overpriced popcorn, there were many other delicious ways to add lightness to your wallet. The vintage signage was exceptionally tempting. One booth featured bins upon bins of old service manuals and period road tests.

One of the most interesting cars of the show was undoubtedly the wild 1966 AMC AMX/1 Vignale prototype. Original and unrestored down to the tires, this outlandish show car is something only AMC could dream up. The car features three(!) rows of seating including a "Ramble seat" (not rumble seat) peaking out of the rear hatch. Other oddities include the lack of a structural A-pillar and an exhaust routed through the rocker panels. It's nice to see one of these concept cars intact after all these years as many were crushed to prevent them from being sold to the public.

There was also a car from the recent ice rally in attendance. 

The wheels on this freshly built 240SX had quite an awesome finish. Possibly the perfect upgrade for your mystichrome Mustang!

The clean interior of this '65 Impala had me lusting after my sold '66 in an identical color. White cue-ball shifters always look great on a chrome lever sprouting above a bench seat.

As the weather (relatively) warms up, the World of Wheels is a great place to see many customs, hot rods and classics in one place before some of them hit the streets this summer. Maybe some will find their way to the Friday night races...


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