VIRTUAL CAR SHOW

WHM x AutomotiveMap Virtual Car Show: April 4, 2020

Owner Chris Pulley regularly shows off this slammed Ford Short Bus at auto shows in Texas.

Photo courtesy of Chris Pulley

We're just getting started with this whole quarantine situation and if you're like the AutomotiveMap team, you're really starting to miss heading to your local car show.

The WHM x AutomotiveMap Virtual Car Show brings the best parts of the car show to your phone, tablet, and computer during this trying time. We have shared pictures of a wide variety of vehicles, submitted by car show fans across the country, below and told you the stories of the cars and their owners.

We limited this week's round to 10 entries. Click here to see last week's show.

The only thing missing is the comroaderie. Hop on over to the AutomotiveMap or WHM Facebook page and tell us what cars you loved, tag someone who would enjoy seeing the cars, and tell your friends to submit their own cars.

Click here to register your car for next week's Virtual Car Show.

1972 Chevrolet El Camino SS

Photo courtesy of Jim Meader

Jim Meader spend $6,500 for his El Camino in 2008 because, "[I] got too old to ride fast motorcycles and wanted a El Camino like I bought when I got out of the Army." That was 1972. Today, El Caminos are far less common than they were then.

Since he's owned it, he's done two frame off restorations that include powder coating the frame; adding C6 Corvette brakes, an aftermarket powder-coated suspension, 600-horsepower ZZ502 engine, 400 Turbo transmission, and a 12- bolt differential. The model has all ARP stainless hardware and wears a 1969 Hugger Orange paint job.

This car has won over 90 awards including twice winning its class at the Houston Autorama.

1962 Chevrolet C10

Photo courtesy of Tim Esterdahl

Tim Esterdahl, the personality behind the Pickup Truck + SUV Talk YouTube channel, was sold his 1962 Chevy C10 in 2017 for the high price of $1.00. The truck was in rough condition when he bought it, having served many years as a farm truck for Esterdahl's extended family. Since then, he's installed a new engine, brakes, and seat cover.

2017 Jeep Wrangler Big Bear

Photo courtesy of Isaac Gutierrez

Isaac Gutierrrz bought his Wrangler in 2019 and immediately set about upgrading it. He gave the car a Dv8 hood front and back bumper, 2.5-inch lift, Dv8 fender liners and fenders, Fuel Wheels wheels, KC HiLiTES off-road lights, Xkglow rock lights, a Rockford Fosgate sound system, and a TrailFX Winches winch. The Jeep has earned the nickname "Black Widow".

1969 Ford Mustang Mach 1

Photo courtesy of Ted Fontenot

Ted Fontenot purchased this Mustang from a restoration shop in 2017. Like much of America, he's a big fan of the model. "The '69 Mach 1 is one of the coolest cars [it] looks fast standing still," he said.

Though it may be hard to believe, the Mustang is all original, except its paint job. It was repainted over 10 years ago its original Wimbledon White hue.

The car was practically destined to find a home at the Fontenot household in Houston, Texas, but it almost passed them by. Fontenot's neighbor when he was growing up had a red '70 Mach 1and when his wife was a child, her mom had a '69 Mach 1. He saw this car for sale twice before he finally purchased it. The first time, he missed it by two days. The second time, he was out of work due to the Obama-era recession and couldn't justify the purchase. The third time was the charm and Fontenot jumped on it.

1968 Dodge Dart GTS

Photo courtesy of Larry McGee

Larry McGee of Katy, Texas plunked down $30,000 for the Dart, which he calls a "Mr. Norm Tribute". He bought the car as a daily driver rather than a show car and hasn't modified it yet, but has the intention of adding new cooling, air conditioning, and a larger carburetor.

McGee's first car was '68 Charger. He claims to always having been a "Mopar guy". He had a '67 Barracuda that he wanted to restore when he retired but it ended up having too much rust for his budget.

1957 Ford B500 Short Bus

Photo courtesy of Chris Pulley

In 2015, Chris Pulley acquired this relic of the past. The Richmond, Texas resident bought the bus, "to be a marketing tool for non-profits around getting people with disabilities out doing activities." Pulled continued, "I am in a wheelchair and I thought what is cooler than a guy in a wheelchair owning a short bus."

The overall aesthetic gives the bus a hotrod feel, while maintaining the functionality of a short bus. It's a fully handicap accessible bus has an air ride suspension, 7.3-liter Diesel engine, 24-inch dually wheels, a custom interior, and unique paint job.

1966 Chevrolet Nova II

Photo courtesy of Jose de Leon

Owner Jose de Leon is very clear, "My car is not a trailer queen." He traded for the car in 2011 after learning that it took two years to build. Since he purchased it, de Leon has added disc brakes, Cal-Tracs, and a carburetor. He adds that he, "drive[s] it and it still shows great. It has several trophies even though it's not a $150k restoration."

1969 Ford Mustang Mach 1

Photo courtesy of West Houston Muscle

This is a Mustang Mach 1 with a slightly different flavor than the one we showed up top this week. Owner Bill Mehling of Richmond, Texas purchased the car used online for $27,000. He tells the story:

"I was ready for a hobby car and always thought the '69 Mach1 was the best looking car ever! It looked great in pictures, but the car was in Minnesota. I had a pro car inspector check it out for me. He supplied a report and dozens of additional pictures. Turned out that the entire undercarriage was new and as clean as the motor! He gave it a thumbs up and the deal was done."

Mehling has modified the car a bit since it arrived in Texas. It has had its interior refreshed with new seat covers, seat foam, door panels, and interior trim pieces. He had air conditioning re-installed (the car was originally equipped with it but had its parts removed).

1997 Dodge Viper GTS

Photo courtesy of Travis Warden

Travis Warden from Houston, Texas, bought his 1997 Viper in 2017, a decade after it rolled off an assembly line in Michigan. It's an Exchange Heads and Cams Car that Warden bought because it's his "dream car". He says that the model has a a Moton suspension, full bolt-ons, and a road racing set up.

1972 Oldsmobile Cutless Supreme

Photo courtesy of Tom Tannahill

Tom Tannahill paid $20,000 for this Olds in 2017. Tannahill's cousin was the original owner of the car, buying it new from Loveless Oldsmobile in Galveston, Texas. She kept it in excellent condition over the years and it now has 184,000 actual miles on it.

Since he purchased the car, the only thing Tannahill has done to the model is install a new convertible top. Its powertrain was rebuilt in 2008.

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Custom SUVs

Ford Bronco to rule SEMA this year

The Bronco RTR features a fun livery and several off-road upgrades.

Ford

The annual Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) show is an opportunity for the aftermarket and manufacturers to come together on wildly customized vehicles and to show off the latest parts and tech in the space. Now that the Ford Bronco has finally made its way to the public, it's not surprising to see several wild SEMA takes on the hottest SUV to hit the market in some time.

2021 Bronco by Tucci Hot Rods The tracks are said to improve the Bronco's abilities in deep snow and ice.Ford

2021 Bronco by Tucci Hot Rods

The new Bronco is capable and rugged on its own, but Tucci Hot Rods felt it needed more. The shop gave it that boost with a set of tracks in place of wheels, which are said to be great for deep snow and ice. This Bronco features a 2.3-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder engine and a seven-speed manual transmission to go with its Mattracks 88-Series quad tracks.

2021 Bronco RTR Fun-Runner by RTR Vehicles

Vaghn Gittin Jr's RTR Vehicles imagined a Bronco package that could be installed at the dealer. The result is the Fun-Runner, which features several Ford Performance and Ford Licensed Accessories parts. It's based on a 2021 two-door Bronco Badlands, and comes with an eye-catching wrap, an Ultimate Dana 44 front axle, Ultimate Dana 60 semi-float rear axle, RCV Performance CV axles, and a performance intake for its four-cylinder engine.

2021 Bronco by BDS Supensions SEMA presents an excellent opportunity for shops to show off their skill and imagination.Ford

2021 Bronco by BDS Supensions

BDS is a subsidiary of Fox Shocks and has worked with Ford for quite some time. The results of that long-running relationship are on display with the BDS Bronco, which features Fox 2.5 PES coilovers, BDS rear adjustable control arms and track bar, swaybar disconnect, and 37-inch BFGoodrich KM3 tires. The Bronco's bumpers have been replaced with CrawlTek Revolution units that feature a recessed winch mount, recovery hooks and more.

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The Grand Cherokee gets a plug-in powertrain for the first time.

Jeep

Jeep just announced the all-new fifth-generation 2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee, featuring a new exterior and interior, updated tech, and class-leading capabilities from its optional engines. However, the big headline here is the new Grand Cherokee 4xe, a plug-in hybrid SUV that follows the Jeep Wrangler into electrified off-roading.

2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee 4xe The 4xe makes all-electric off-roading possible.Jeep

As it did with the Wrangler, Jeep electrified the Grand Cherokee for the new model year. The new 4xe powertrain is available in the Limited, Trailhawk, Overland, Summit, and Summit Reserve trims. It uses a turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-four-cylinder engine and features an all-electric driving range of 25 miles, fuel economy of 57 MPGe, and a total combined driving range of 440 miles. The powertrain also produces 375 horsepower and 470 pound-feet of torque.

2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee 4xe All Grand Cherokee models get a more upscale interior for the 2022 model year.Jeep

With the water and terrain involved in off-roading, an electric motor and plug-in components could be a recipe for disaster, but Jeep took steps to protect sensitive parts of the drivetrain and vehicle. All high-voltage electronics are seats and are waterproof, and Jeep says that the Grand Cherokee 4xe can ford water of up to 24 inches in depth. The battery also comes with its own heating and cooling system to hold it in the ideal temperature range for optimum performance. The powertrain delivers impressive capability, as Jeep says a Grand Cherokee Trailhawk 4xe was able to tackle the Rubicon Trail on electric power only.

2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee 4xe The 2022 Grand Cherokee gets updated tech and safety features.Jeep

The 4xe's charging port is located on the front fender to allow easier charging in tight spots. LED indicators show the charging status and there's an LED battery monitor inside the vehicle on the instrument panel. Three driving modes allow the driver to select the right vehicle and powertrain behavior for the situation. Hybrid mode combines both the electric motor and gas engine, and balances the two for the best fuel efficiency and performance. Electric mode operates on electric power only until the battery's power is depleted. eSave prioritizes the gas engine to preserve battery power. As with all PHEVs, the Grand Cherokee 4xe functions like a traditional hybrid once the battery's power is mostly depleted.


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