1650ci Model A Ford – Video

This mad Kiwi jammed 27 litres of ex-military might into a classic Ford

Photographers: Alastair Ritchie

RUSSELL Lowe’s Model A Ford isn’t your typical hot rod. In case you missed it, there’s a flame-spitting, 1650ci Rover Meteor engine up front.

Extracted from a Centurion tank, the 27-litre, all-alloy V12 is an OHC design with four valves per cylinder. Not bad for an engine designed in the 30s! Russell gifted it a 16/71 blower, while a pair of 1250cfm Dominator carbs attempt to sate the beast’s unquenchable thirst. Fuel is supplied from a tiny New Zealand Breweries keg, which means runtime is usually measured in minutes.

According to Russell, the hardest part of the project was working on the engine, as many technical details were classified during its decades of military service.

A DAF truck planetary reduction hub, Powerglide auto and nine-inch diff rest between Ford Bonus chassis rails and stoppers, with an HZ Holden booster. On paper, the set-up is good for 1000hp and 175mph – and Russell plans to run it on the strip!

Though it has a lofty redline of 2700rpm, the 300rpm idle isn’t enough to charge the battery, meaning much of the rig’s time is spent hooked to a generator.

The project was a two-year journey for Russell and his team at The Toy Shed, and it was built primarily for events like NZ’s Muscle Car Madness, where it made its first appearance.

Check out the beast wowing spectators at the event, and turn up the volume!

Sign-up here for your free weekly report on the world of Street Machine