January 27, 2017 -- The longest running indoor car in the world, the Grand National Roadster Show (GNRS), is now in its 68th year. Held at the Fairplex in Ponoma, CA, this three-day event showcased more than 650 automobiles indoors and 1000 outdoors. Of the several awards that were presented, there’s one that is coveted by everyone in the hot rod industry – America’s Most Beautiful Roadster (AMBR). You might say it’s the Holy Grail of hot rods, and in terms of prestige, is not unlike the Oscar. In fact, the trophy, which stands at 9 feet, is surrounded by GNRS’s rendition of the Oscar statuette, only these statues are decked out in colors and patterns that you might see painted on fully customized street rods. The AMBR competition is open to all U.S. built roadsters, roadster pickups and touring vehicles 1937 and older, including designer roadsters that resemble a 1937 or older roadster. Overall stance, sound, how the owner fits in his own car, fit and finish, engineering and a multitude of other considerations such as body, paintwork, upholstery, and craftsmanship are considered. And the winner is…
A 1936 Packard Coach Built, Disappearing Top was crowned America's Most Beautiful Roadster at the 2017 Grand National Roadster Show. This dream car, which took six years to create, was made possible by Bruce Wanta, its owner, and the dedicated team at Hollywood Hot Rods. It takes only one look at the sleek and flowing body of this Mulholland Speedster to see how it came in first at the Grand National Roadster Show. And, in what is typically a Ford-dominated competition, it was also the first Packard to win in this Show's 68-year history.
To be selected as finalist for the AMBR award is in itself quite an accomplishment. The other dozen contenders that made the cut were each exceptional builds representing both traditional hot rods and one-off masterpieces.
|1937 Ford||Glen McElroy|
|1932 Ford Pickup||Matthew Gordon|
|1928 Lincoln||Shawn Killion|
|1927 Dodge||Matt Taylor|
|1928 Ford||Bill Grant|
|1932 Ford||Dan Peterson|
|1932 Ford||Scott Hawley|
|1932 Ford Pickup||Don Lindfors|
|1929 Ford||Wayne Johnson|
|1934 Ford||Jim McPherson|
|1932 Ford||Gordon Gray|
|1932 Ford||James Hetfield|
In addition to crowing America’s Most Beautiful Roadster, the Grand National Roadster Show also presents awards to dozens of other top custom rods at the event. Here are some of the standouts that took home trophies for being the best in their category.
The Grand National Roadster Show also showcases the top builds in motorcycles. This year, America’s Most Beautiful Motorcycle award went to a totally hand-built custom bike named Xpression. The motorcycle was a Chip Foose design built by Ken Reister, and was patterned after the Foose 2006 AMBR-winning 1936 Ford roadster, named Impression. Here is Xpression, as well as some other eye-catching cycles at the show.
Click here to see more, including the South California Woodie Club, Tri-5 Chevys, and the Suede Palace.