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Hot rods rescue St Johns

17 November, 2014


Getting the hot rods out of the garage and out on the road for a Sunday cruise is great, but getting them out for a great cause is even better

An impressive level of support was seen for the combined efforts of Auckland’s North Shore car club East Bay Rods and the Silverdale Business Association in hosting a charity display for St Johns at the Silverdale Shopping Centre on Sunday, November 16.

Much of the community came out to check out all the cars on display during the one-day deal, which cost just a gold coin donation to St Johns. Over fifty of East Bay Rods’ vehicles were on display with the addition of other cars, and also a preferred parking area for visiting hot rods, street machines and classics.

Local businesses also sponsored each car on display as a way of fundraising for East Bay Rods itself who are very active in hot rodding throughout New Zealand. The event was so successful it’s looking like it’s likely to become a regular thing, which sounds like great exposure for the hot rodding hobby.

Taipan – surpassing interest

“It’s merely a passing interest,” insists Selby — despite owning three variants of the classic VW Beetle, including an unusual VW van that was sold as a body kit for a Subaru. In his defence he points to a 1961 Ford Thunderbird, a car that he converted to right-hand drive. However, on the VW side of the ledger, since he opened Allison Autos in Whanganui 27 years ago, Selby has built 15 VW-powered Formula First cars, followed by a beach buggy, restored a derelict Karmann Ghia, and hot-rodded a common or garden Beetle into something that has to be seen to be believed. As speed is not something generally associated with classic VWs, though, Selby is still waiting for this particular modification to catch on amongst the hot rod faithful.

Travelling companion

It’s easy to see why the Morris Minor Traveller was one of the best-loved variants of the Morris Minor. Introduced in 1953, it was equipped with the same independent torsion bar front suspension, drum brakes, and rack and pinion steering as its saloon sibling but, with their foldable rear seat increasing versatility, many Travellers were used as trade vehicles, says Derek Goddard. Derek and Gail Goddard, the owners of this superbly restored example, have run Morris Minors since before they were married in 1974.
“Our honeymoon vehicle was a blue Morris Minor van — it was a rust bucket,” says Derek.