If all goes well, just when R&C readers get their first eyeful of this month's Dream Car, spectators at the Grand National Roadster Show in Pomona, California, will be seeing the finished version of this stunning custom.
This '52 Buick Model 45R (Riviera), aptly named Resilience, is the property of the father-and-son duo of Paul and Erik Hansen, and the latest achievement from Strange Motion Rod and Custom Construction. You may remember the Hansens from their Sedeuced '32 roadster, judged America's Most Beautiful Roadster at the 2005 GNRS-and builder Tim Strange from his many envelope- and style-pushing customs and street machines. It was hot rod pioneer Blackie Gejeian who, after seeing their success with the roadster, advised Paul and Erik that they "build a sled." Soon after, the stars aligned and Tim Strange contacted the Hansens to ask them if they'd be interested in helping resurrect a stalled project. Needless to say, a plan was hatched and the torches were once again lit on another son-and-father collaboration. Not long after that, I was called upon to work with the team, sketching out their ideas as they were developed. As everybody worked together, they drew inspiration from one another, as well as from designs from the past and concepts from the future. Without giving too much away, the radically reworked Riv features some trick Caddy power with numerous one-off fabricated underhood parts and a slew of Barry Grant carburetors. The rolling components include custom-milled rims (it is the Grand National Roadster Show, after all), an immaculate, fully finished undercarriage, and a slick and sleek Motorama-inspired interior, keeping with the car's "concept/show car of the Fifties" theme, along with an audio system right out of the 21st century.
The car promises to become a modern classic, and everybody involved hopes that you'll get a chance to see and appreciate Resilience, the Hansens' Strange Buick!