Stuffing modern technology into older cars has been a practice of enthusiasts for almost as long as cars have been around. As ubiquitous as the practice is, however, it remains a subject of fierce debate: Should a car be kept original? How much modification is too much?
Although I am generally of the opinion that a person should be free to do whatever they want with their car, I still lean towards being a purist, particularly when it comes to older cars. There is something special about preserving a car as it was originally designed and built. That is not to say I’m opposed to all customisation, only that I prefer it when modifications are more subtle and understated.
Tim Allen’s 1968 Chevrolet Camaro is a case in point. Built by Bodie Stroud, it’s not original in many ways – with a fuel-injected small block 427, upgraded suspension and brakes that required custom bodywork to accommodate, all the way down to the electronic gauges in the dash panel, it is a thoroughly modern car. But Stroud has designed it in such a way that it retains all the character of the original. Those purpose-built, but original-style wheels are a great example. It wouldn’t look out place in 1968, even if it performs in a way that means it isn’t out place in 2017. That’s the kind of modification I can get on board with.
Here is a clip from Jay Leno’s Garage. There is a lot to appreciate about the thought that went into the car.