The Iconic Rise of Hot Rods

The theories and speculations over hot rod cars have grown into a vast community of enthusiasts. Originally coined as a motto for racers and fans in the 1930s through the 1950s, hot rods were edged out of the mainstream spotlight by the heavy rumbles of their counterparts. Muscle cars carried proud engines and took over the roadways with little transition. Although hot rods had their niche, the group wasn’t expected to reach high levels of popularity as the new era began.

The Hot-Rodding Future

The flow of events from the 1960s to the 1980s turned from a political atmosphere to a culturally iconic time. Music, fashion and an array of movements landed a pop scene that served as a bridge from the antiquated to the modern day. It also is a pivotal period that the hot rod went from a cool car in a garage to a living symbol for the next generation. It is no secret that our cherished favorites are legends in our hearts, yet the ‘80s created a fresh perspective on the cultural scene. Hot rods followed suit leaving a trail of blazing glory that is still revered today.

Everyone has their own memory of how they became a die-hard hot rod fan. For some it was the victory of a race and for others it was a celebrity style. As the trend waned it was a clear moment of truth as the 1933 Ford Eliminator Coupe owned by Billy Gibbons entered the auto arena. Gibbons was in the wildly popular band ZZ Top. Long beards and chart-topping hits included the car in a few of their most watched music videos. This was a smooth introduction that started an entirely new craze with the younger crowd.

Hot Rods in the Crowd

Hot Rods in the Crowd
Hot Rods in the Crowd

Hot Rods took on the ‘80s and ‘90s persona of colorful additions. These decades were out with the old and in with the new in regard to inspiring a broadened audience into a flashy theme. Subdued was not a common detail in these times as vibrant shiny tones and bright neon became the center of attention. It was not long before hot rods were remade with show room worthy sheen. We saw rich purples, lime green, electric blues and caution orange everywhere we looked. Hot rods were back in action which became evident as the years went on. Shows became more prevalent and inclusive of hot rods in all parts of the country. It became a staple in the car world that brought customization to a new level. Framework, cages and body details headed the charge becoming front and center in the industry. Networks and magazines hopped on the hot rod train ensuring the auto style’s place in history. Hot rod cars from the dawning days 40 and 50 years prior were actively being sought out in droves. With this type of attention, it is to no surprise the market continues to thrive this very day.

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