google.com, pub-7262833583048862, DIRECT, f08c47fec0942fa0
 

Detroit's Autorama Returns After a Short Absence!

Updated: Aug 28

Blame It on the Pandemic!



A front only view of the 1958 Chevrolet Corvette
1958 Chevrolet Corvette (Front Grille)

Detroit has a long-standing relationship with Autorama going back as far as 1953 when they had a total of 40 cars on display. While the event started growing, it didn’t take flight until Don Ridler, a former professional football player, and sports promoter was enlisted.


Through Don’s influence, the event had found new life in the late ’50s and early ’60s. Ridler continued to promote the show until he died in 1963. The Don Ridler Memorial Award was awarded a year later for “Best in Show”, and has been handed out ever since.


Personally, my first memory of this car show revolved around the special appearances of certain cars in the eighties. I remember begging my father to take us to see the “General Lee” from Dukes of Hazard. For those unfamiliar, the car in question was a 1969 Dodge Charger. This was a must-watch show of the eighties. As I was writing this article, imagine my surprise to find they recreated one of the jumps of the General Lee at the 2017 Autorama show (see below)


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rmyEYTc4CPU


There were appearances from various Batmobiles, Knight Rider’s Kitt (Pontiac Firebird Trans-Am), and different other movie and television show vehicles. I was first in line to see these famous cars from popular culture. There was always something “magical” about these cars. While I was fawning over pop-culture cars, my father was there to see cars like this:




A 1958 Chevrolet Corvette on display at the 2022 Detroit Autorama.
1958 Chevrolet Corvette (media by JC)

This year’s Autorama was a little more special as the show was canceled in 2021 due to some pandemic complications. Adding to this show was the first time my friend’s 1958 Chevrolet Corvette, which I wrote about earlier, would be on public display for the first time.


https://www.inyerself.com/post/1958-chevrolet-corvette-restoration-long-road-travelled


The history of this particular car began February 4, 1958, in St Louis, Missouri Chevrolet assembly plant. The restoration of this vehicle back to its original condition was done by Detroit Hot Rod Sport & Custom. out of Plymouth, Michigan. The Rochester Fuel Injection System is original, and the car comes with touring tires. Make a note of the large whitewall tires in the original article. For the first time since the Corvette’s introduction, this model year came with seatbelts and quad headlights.



Hood raised and front view of the 1958 Chevrolet Corvette.
Front View with hood up (media by JC)


There is something to be said of a nicely polished piece of automotive history. As I shared with the owner, the car will never look as good as it does in these pictures!




Rear view of the 1958 Chevrolet Corvette.
Rear View (media by JC)

A look into the engine compartment of the 1958 Chevrolet Corvette.
Rochester Fuel Injection System (media by JC)


As luck would have it, a souped-up 1960 Chevrolet Corvette was just down the aisle. As you can see from the picture, the engine is not original. You have to love Autorama!


A large engine placed into a red 1960 Chevrolet Corvette
1960 Souped Up Chevrolet Corvette


12 views0 comments