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All-Steel 1941 Willys American Is the Perfect Retro Build, Ruined by Flames

Ah, flames of various colors and extent painted on the body of a car. History is not entirely sure who first came up with the idea that painting flames is a cool way to advertise one’s customizing talents, but the reality remains that not long ago, and for a number of years, you weren’t cool if your ride wasn’t engulfed in this visual-only fire.
1941 Willys American Flaming Willys 13 photos
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Those years left us with a variety of tastes after resting our eyes on such builds. We felt bitter, and quite a lot of it, when things such as the 1950 Ford, which failed to sell back in the spring of last year during a major auction, came up.

At the opposite side of the spectrum, our taste buds were delighted by the sweetness of the 2000 Plymouth Prowler whose extensive paint job alone, flames and claws included, cost the owner $55,000 to have made.

Now, if you were in the mood for another touch of bitterness, the 1941 Willys Americar we have here is exactly what the doctor prescribed.

The Americar is one of my favorite platforms for a custom build. Sufficiently rare (it was only made for five years in the late 1930s and early 1940s) and weird (it has a body shaped like few others, from whatever time period), the moniker gave birth over the years to some incredible and very expensive projects.

The one we have here, a 1941 model year, had all the requirements and was gifted with all the modifications to transform it into a worthwhile project.

We get an all-steel body wrapped over an Art Morrison profile frame with tubular crossmembers and riding on an independent front and fully adjustable rear suspension.

Under the hood, the unknown masterminds behind the build slapped a huge 540ci (8.8-liter) V8 engine of Chevrolet make. It not only is huge, but it also comes with a BDS supercharger, Holley ECU, and a ceramic-coated exhaust system. The unknown amount of power it generates is handled through an automatic transmission.

Inside, one gets all that vintage feel these machines are known for, but also modern amenities like Vintage Air, power windows, and a Kenwood monitor with DVD receiver.

A great build, then, like most Americars are. But then the people who made it decided this great package needs to be wrapped in a blue hue at the rear (which is rather nice), with the front end, all the way to the rear panels, flooded in sweeping yellow and orange flames. Which are not nice at all, and make the Americar look less impressive than it could have been.

The current owner of the ride that is nicknamed Flaming Willys seems to believe there might be people in the market for flames still, so they’re trying to sell it during the Barrett-Jackson auction in Scottsdale, Arizona, in January next year. And they might just make it, given how the thing is listed with no reserve, meaning the highest bidder gets it, no matter the price paid for it.

Editor's note: This article was not sponsored or supported by a third-party.

 
 
 
 
 

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