autoevolution

autoevolution's Custom Builds Month

Sometimes confused with coachbuilt vehicles, custom builds are the essence of personal creativity in the quest of individuality for some people. For others, they are simply not worth it or as seen as an insult to the engineers and designers that created the original vehicle. 

No matter which side of the fence you’re on, there’s no denying that custom cars and bikes will always have a special place in the gearheads’ world.  

The consensus is that the custom culture, which was soon to be spelled ‘Kustom’ thanks to a certain George Barris, was birthed after World War II, when people started modifying stock pre-war cars to their liking.  

The first so-called ‘gow jobs’ evolved into hot rods, with four different 'gow job' cars evolved into hot rods, which then got separated into four rather disctinct lineages: street rods, street machines, restomods and the peculiar-looking rat rods.  

Over the years, the custom build movement has changed to also encompass cars that are specially made by American or European tuners, with the Japanese jumping on board as well.  

The motorcycle industry wasn’t left aside either, with a variety of aftermarket shops now specializing in creating literal works of art on wheels.  

Despite the controversy spawning from such creations, which are mostly based on mass-produced vehicles but take the styling and/or performance to new distinctive heights, there is a huge market and even larger fans base nowadays for tailored means of transportation. 

The entire month of July we’ll strive to bring you the most interesting examples of custom builds on autoevolution, whether on four or only two wheels, as we celebrate this flamboyant automotive sub-culture.

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

Ford Mustang "Bloodshot" Looks Lean and Mean
Ford Mustang "Bloodshot" Looks Lean and Mean

31 Jul 2020, 17:55 UTC / We are looking at a 2016 Ford Mustang GT that has been gifted with various exterior mods, as well as a few custom cabin goodies

 
This Porsche 911 S/T Tribute from DP Motorsport Has 1985 Carrera 3.2 Coupe Blood
This Porsche 911 S/T Tribute from DP Motorsport Has 1985 Carrera 3.2 Coupe Blood

31 Jul 2020, 14:36 UTC / Restomods are a form of art, there’s no doubt about that, so let’s show this German tuners some love for their Porsche masterpiece

 
This 2019 Mustang Is a Custom Build That Even Ford Bragged About
This 2019 Mustang Is a Custom Build That Even Ford Bragged About

31 Jul 2020, 10:42 UTC / This is one of the five Mustangs that Ford showcased in its booth at the 2018 edition of the SEMA show, mostly thanks to its one-of-a-kind upgrade package

 
This Custom Ford Mustang Is Carbon Fiber Overdose
This Custom Ford Mustang Is Carbon Fiber Overdose

31 Jul 2020, 09:39 UTC / A one of a kind Ford Mustang built by Maier Racing comes with so many carbon fiber parts, and this allows for McLaren-matching performance

 
Pro-Touring 1970 Chevrolet Chevelle Boasts Camaro ZL1 Seats, Corvette LS3 Engine
Pro-Touring 1970 Chevrolet Chevelle Boasts Camaro ZL1 Seats, Corvette LS3 Engine

30 Jul 2020, 20:52 UTC / If you want a 1970 Chevelle that can cruise as well as race without skipping a beat, this pro-touring restomod may be right up your alley

 
Dodge Charger "Queen Bee" Has a HEMI Sting
Dodge Charger "Queen Bee" Has a HEMI Sting

30 Jul 2020, 18:55 UTC / We are looking at one of the early Chargers, namely an SRT8 that has received quite a few mods to make it look and perform as it does today

 
1978 Corvette Summer Movie Car Is All Kinds of Strange
1978 Corvette Summer Movie Car Is All Kinds of Strange

30 Jul 2020, 18:29 UTC / It's so strange that we're not even sure if this isn't one of George Barris' creations. Still, ugly is ugly, even if it was driven by Luke Skywalker

 
1941 Lincoln Continental Switches From V12 Power to a Chevy Small-Block V8
1941 Lincoln Continental Switches From V12 Power to a Chevy Small-Block V8

30 Jul 2020, 18:22 UTC / The 1941 Lincoln Continental originally came with a V12 engine, but this restomod here is a little punchier and more reliable thanks to GM power

 
Four-Engined 1969 Ford Mustang "Mach IV" Dragster Is Crazy
Four-Engined 1969 Ford Mustang "Mach IV" Dragster Is Crazy

30 Jul 2020, 17:18 UTC / Nowadays, when you want to make 3000 horsepower, you just get a big-block that runs on a gallon of race fuel per second. But in the 60s, you'd just use more V8s

 
1969 Chevrolet Chevelle Malibu Customized With Two-Tone Paint Job, ZZ383 Engine
1969 Chevrolet Chevelle Malibu Customized With Two-Tone Paint Job, ZZ383 Engine

30 Jul 2020, 16:02 UTC / As opposed to the Malibu that Chevrolet sells today, this 1969 Chevelle Malibu is definitely worthy of the storied nameplate it wears

 
Custom Dragster RS Frame Fits Screamin’ Eagle 110 Engine Like a Glove
Custom Dragster RS Frame Fits Screamin’ Eagle 110 Engine Like a Glove

30 Jul 2020, 15:39 UTC / Thunderbike RS-R is a German custom bike frame packing a Harley-Davidson Screamin’ Eagle 110 engine, was completed in 2010

 
1954 Ford Crestline Skyliner Shows Off 5.0 HO V8 Through "Show Day Hood"
1954 Ford Crestline Skyliner Shows Off 5.0 HO V8 Through "Show Day Hood"

30 Jul 2020, 13:37 UTC / Probably the slickest restomod you'll see all week, this one-of-a-kind Crestline started out as an ultra-rare Skyliner in the 1950s

 
How the Need for a Child Seat Made the Extraterrestrial Car
How the Need for a Child Seat Made the Extraterrestrial Car

30 Jul 2020, 13:31 UTC / Since 1998, through his Car Factory in Florida, customizer Mike Vetter has been making ETVs, Extraterrestrial Vehicles, from donor cars

 
Camaro “Iron Man” Is a Custom Build Whose Armor Is a Lexus Tri-Coat Paint
Camaro “Iron Man” Is a Custom Build Whose Armor Is a Lexus Tri-Coat Paint

30 Jul 2020, 13:18 UTC / This 1969 Chevrolet Camaro is a custom build that made its first public appearance at the 2018 SEMA and then impressed the audience at many other shows

 
This Dodge Challenger Is a One of a Kind SRT8 with Lamborghini-Like Scissor Door
This Dodge Challenger Is a One of a Kind SRT8 with Lamborghini-Like Scissor Door

30 Jul 2020, 12:35 UTC / This custom Challenger was built for SEMA and has been mostly used as a show car, so it has just 12,000 miles on the clock

 
Own This Lifted 1984 Chevrolet K5 Blazer With a Modern Silverado Vortec V8
Own This Lifted 1984 Chevrolet K5 Blazer With a Modern Silverado Vortec V8

30 Jul 2020, 11:10 UTC / A second-generation K5 Blazer has been treated to a wide range of modifications that will thoroughly enhance its innate American truck capabilities

 
1955 Chevrolet First Series Bagged Pickup Truck Is Looking for a New Owner
1955 Chevrolet First Series Bagged Pickup Truck Is Looking for a New Owner

30 Jul 2020, 10:03 UTC / Probably the nicest First Series half-tonner on eBay right now, this 3100 is a one-off that can be yours for the princely price of $64,995.95

 
Classic MINI Cooper Gets Honda B18 VTEC, Morphs Into 369 HP Swapped Bomb
Classic MINI Cooper Gets Honda B18 VTEC, Morphs Into 369 HP Swapped Bomb

30 Jul 2020, 09:48 UTC / This iconic British machine has received a heart transplant in the form of a Honda B18 turbo inline-4 engine, lifting its unassuming image to a huge hp count

 
The Damaged Porsche 911s of Daniel Arsham, or How Destroying Cars Is Art
The Damaged Porsche 911s of Daniel Arsham, or How Destroying Cars Is Art

30 Jul 2020, 07:27 UTC / The Daniel Arsham Crystal Eroded Porsche 911 was created at the end of 2019 with Porsche engineers from Germany, is now on display in China

 
2JZ-Powered Lexus RC F Drift Car Is a 1,200 HP Smoke Machine
2JZ-Powered Lexus RC F Drift Car Is a 1,200 HP Smoke Machine

29 Jul 2020, 17:33 UTC / If all the crazy Toyota Supras we've seen over the years have taught us anything is that everything is better with a highly-tuned 2JZ under the hood