Can You Guess the Make and Model of These Custom Cars?


By: Dave Davis

7 Min Quiz

Image: Pixabay by James Farley

About This Quiz

Most drivers are happy if their car looks and performs the same way when they sell it as it did when it came off the showroom floor. No scratches, no noticeable dents and an engine that sounds about as good as new is perfect for them. For others, however, a car is a blank canvas for mechanical modifications, custom paint jobs and whatever other flights of fancy come to them. For these select few, the custom car scene is more than just working on automobiles; it's a way of life.

Think you know your classic cars? What about cars that have been reshaped, refashioned and restyled to suit the needs and desires of their owners? This quiz will test your ability to see beyond the wild paint jobs and aftermarket add-ons and tell what the car used to be.

In this quiz, we'll give you photos of cars that have been preserved, renovated or sometimes modified (almost) beyond recognition. Your task is to tell us the make and model of these cars — or at least what they started out their life as. Some are trickier than others, but the information is all there for those who have a keen eye and automotive imagination. 

The owners of these cars have put their time, energy and soul into remaking iconic cars of the past into something unique. Ready to take a look and see if you can tell what type of machine they started with? Let's go!

What did this purple beauty start its life out as?

This car started out as a 1947 Hudson Super-6 Convertible before it met custom auto legend George Barris (who would go on to make the iconic Batmobile from the TV series). This car was chopped and sectioned, given a removable hard top, had a1952 Hudson Hornet 7X engine installed, along with a GM 4 speed hydramatic transmission and a 1950 Oldsmobile 336 rear end. It was also given that wild purple paint job to finish the job.


Your grandfather might have driven a car like this back in the day in 1949 — what's the make and model?

The Buick Roadmaster was built between 1936 and 1958 (and again from 1991 through 1996) and was considered the flagship of the Buick fleet from '46 through '57. This car was built in 1949 and is an example of a fifth-generation Roadmaster — a revamp of the previous model and the first Roadmaster built with post-war styling.


Olé! What would you call this car as it whipped by you on the street?

Built in two generations between 1971 and 1978, the American Motors Corporation's Matador replaced the company's well-known Rebel model. The Matador was available as a hardtop, sedan or station wagon, with a number of engine options. The model pictured here is a 1974 AMC Matador 401 V8 coupe with a custom paint job.


When it rolled off the assembly line in 1959, what was this vehicle called?

The first Dodge Coronet was introduced in 1949 and enjoyed a long production life, with seven generations being made until 1976. This model is an example of the fourth generation of the Coronet, made between 1957 and 1959, and was built on the DeSoto Fireflite chassis.


It's safe to say this car didn't start off life in this particular shade of red. What's the make and model of this car from 1940?

The Ford Deluxe Coupe, built between 1937 and 1940, is a favorite model of hot rodders who want to show off their skills at automobile modification. This model was also a favorite of early stock car racing. When new, this model offered several body styles, including coupe, convertible, sedan, van, station wagon and pickup truck.


This car from 1939 was named after a very prominent feature, which this customized version still has. Can you guess what type of car it is?

The Pontiac brand was started in 1926 by General Motors and soon became a favorite with automobile shoppers. The brand would go on to produce some of the most iconic models in automotive history, including the Firebird and the GTO. The Pontiac Silver Streak pictured here takes its name from the streak of chrome going down the front of its hood.


Looks like this car is in disguise! What is the actual make and model of this 2012 "Firebird"?

The Chevrolet Camaro hit the streets in 1966, designed to take on Ford's runaway hit, the Mustang. The Camaro soon found its audience and, except for a hiatus between 2002 and 2010, has been a mainstay for Chevy ever since. For a time, the Camaro shared a platform with the Pontiac Firebird, which might explain the vehicle pictured here.


This car from 1949 was the flagship for its manufacturer when it hit the streets. What type of car is it?

The Oldsmobile 98 (which would later be spelled Ninety-Eight and finally Ninety Eight at the end of its run) was introduced in 1941 and took its name from its "Series 90" frame and its eight-cylinder engine. It was Oldsmobile's top-of-the-line model for many years, and would go on to have 12 generations, ending in 1998. This model, a 1949, is an example of the third generation, although we're pretty sure it didn't roll off the showroom floor with that amazing green paint job!


This car, also known as a "40-series," would have been seen on the roads in 1938. Care to guess its make and model?

The Buick Special was the automaker's entry-level full-size car when it hit the streets in 1936. The line would have a long life, with seven generations being produced from 1936 through 1996. The first generation, produced from '36 through '49, was available as a coupe, sedan, station wagon or convertible.


A famous band took its name from this vehicle, built in 1915. Name that band!

The REO Speedwagon was a light truck first built in 1915 and continued into the 1950s and were developed into early fire trucks, tow trucks, delivery vehicles, hearses and ambulances. This 1915 example of an REO Speedwagon was refurbished by The Creative Workshop in Dania Beach, Florida.


The first generation of this car was built for two — and only two. Can you name the make and model of the 1957 automobile pictured here?

When it first debuted in 1955, the Ford Thunderbird was a convertible two-seater sports car. Believing having only that configuration available was holding back sales, Ford put an extra row of seats in the back for the second generation. This proved to be the correct strategy, because sales skyrocketed at that point. The T-bird enjoyed 10 generations of production, ending in 1997, with an 11th generation produced between 2002 and 2005.


One of the most famous custom cars of all time, what make and model was the "General Lee" from TV's "The Dukes of Hazzard"?

The "General Lee" from "The Dukes of Hazzard" was a 1969 Dodge Charger. Actually, because of the stunt work involved, there were more than 300 Chargers used in the run of the show from 1979 to 1985. Some 1968 Chargers were modified and also used as the hero car; 1970 Chargers were never used because they were too different to modify.


What is the make and model of this classic car from the 1930s?

The Chevrolet Master Coupe was a vehicle produced from 1933 to 1942. The model pictured here is a first-generation 1933 model, which replaced the Eagle line of Chevy vehicles. During its run, the automobile was available as a two-door coupe, a four-door sedan or a two-door pickup truck.


This car might not be very customized on the outside, but inside is a different story. What did this electric-conversion vehicle start out as?

The Fiat 600 was a rear-engine two-door saloon car made from 1955 through 1969 and was designed to compete with the Volkswagen Beetle and the Renault 4CV at the time. The vehicle was produced in many countries during its run, with an option of three different inline-four engines. The Fiat 600 pictured here has been modified to run on electricity through the use of Absorbed Glass Mat (AGM) batteries.


This car from 1957 is long, luxurious and has tail fins for days. What type of car is it?

If you want to make a statement, show up in a Cadillac Eldorado Brougham. This customized version is a 1957 model from the third generation of the Eldorado's run. The Brougham models were hand-built and were considered ultra-luxury vehicles — and with a sticker price of just over $13,000 cost twice as much as the regular Eldorado.


A much later namesake of this vehicle would go on to be a favorite of police departments. What is the name of this 1955 beauty?

The 1955 Ford Crown Victoria Skyliner had a very distinctive feature — a smoked acrylic glass window over the front seat for that feeling of being out in nature without actually having to be out in it. The Fairlane Crown Victoria Skyliner was only produced in 1955 and 1956 and was followed by the Fairlane 500 Skyliner.


There were only about 2,000 of this classy car model ever created. Can you give us its make and model of this car from 1936?

Although it was made between 1935 and 1954, there were only about 2,000 Delahaye 135s ever built. This luxury car had several different body styles over the years, and was also a successful racing vehicle, winning the 1937 Monte Carlo rally and the 1938 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1938. The beautiful 1936 Delahaye 135 pictured here was modified by Figoni & Falaschi of Paris.


Although introduced in 1941, this car wasn't able to get into full swing until after World War II. Can you name it?

The 1941 Chevrolet Master Deluxe had been upgraded and redesigned from the previous year's Master model, given a new grille and suspension, along with design modifications to make the vehicle curvier. The line was shelved, however, in early 1942 because of the production needs of World War II. Similar models resurfaced in 1946, with their names changed to Stylemaster and Fleetmaster.


With a name that sounds like it could cut through the air, what is the make and model of this pony/muscle car from the late '60s and early '70s?

With both pony and muscle car variants, the Javelin by American Motor Corporation (AMC) was built in two generations between 1968 and 1974 and was marketed in the United States and other countries. The second generation had an option for a 6.4-liter V8 engine that could generation 325 horsepower and was used by the Alabama Highway Patrol for high-speed pursuit and response runs.


Called the "Hot One" in its manufacturer's advertising, do you know what this 1955 car was called?

When introduced in 1950, the Chevrolet Bel Air was at first a trim level for other vehicles. As of 1953, however, the Bel Air became its own model. Available with a 4.3-liter small-block V8, the 1955 Bel Air was a mean machine, with all-new styling from the previous generation. The car was produced in seven generations and was finally discontinued in 1975 in the U.S. market.


There's obviously a Volkswagen Beetle in the mix here, but what other automobile donated parts for this automotive artist's vision?

This vehicle is a hybrid (in the structural sense, not in the powerplant sense) of a Volkswagen Beetle and Rolls-Royce Silver Wraith II. Because there were so many Beetles made in its long, long production life, the spunky little car is a favorite of some automotive mad scientists who want to experiment and make something that didn't exist before (and, in some cases, possibly shouldn't have existed).


It's not quite a "little deuce coupe," but it's remarkably close. Can you tell the make and model of this car that dates back to 1932?

This 1932 Ford Deuce is a Tudor rather than a Coupe (Tudors are a bit longer than a Coupe), but it's still a beautiful car, even if it doesn't have a song written about it. The Ford Model B, of which this car is an example, is a favorite of hot rodders and car customizers around the world. The Model B was built between 1932 and 1934. The Tudor, by the way, gets its name simply because it a "two-door" model.


Dating back to 1940, can you name this vehicle that sounds like it has a royalty flowing through its lines?

The Chrysler Windsor was built between 1939 and 1961 in the United States (it lasted until 1966 in Canada) and was positioned just above the entry-level Chrysler Royal. In all, eight generations of the Windsor were manufactured, each reflecting the technology and style of its era. The first generation, like the car pictured here, was available in sedan, coupe, convertible and station wagon body styles.


Before the Silverado ruled the pickup world for its maker, fans of the Bowtie drove vehicles like the one pictured here. Can you name it?

The Chevrolet C/K series was the automaker's main pickup offering between 1959 and 2002. The letters indicate what kind of drive train the vehicle offers; "C" means front-wheel drive while "K" trucks had four-wheel drive. Throughout its long production life, the C/K series only had four generations and was eventually replaced by the Silverado line.


It was difficult to sell cars in the middle of the Great Depression, but they still tried. What's the make and model of this one from 1935?

In the midst of the Great Depression, automakers were always trying to come up with ways to convince a frugal public to spend their money on cars. The Dodge Model DU was introduced in 1935 and was part of the automaker's "New Value" line. The coupe model of this line, like the one pictured here, retailed for $645 at the time.


This vehicle wasn't quite as low to the ground when it was new in 1940, but it still turned heads. What is the genesis of this show car?

With its torpedo-style body and smooth lines and curves, the Cadillac Series 62 was a head-turner when it first hit the streets in 1940. The full-size luxury car was a status symbol for the times and was built through seven generations, finally being retired in 1964 in favor of the DeVille and Calais models.


This car was made briefly before World War II ended passenger car production, and then came back for an encore for the remainder of the 1940s. Can you name it?

The full-sized Plymouth De Luxe debuted in 1941 but was pulled out of production the next year because of America's entry into World War II and the wartime production prioritization that came with it. After the war, the De Luxe came back in 1946 and lasted until 1950. There were two trim levels available: the De Luxe and the top-of-the-line Special De Luxe (both of which actually sound pretty special)


This 1955 car was the middle child of its manufacturer's sedan line of the time. Can you tell us what this vehicle was called?

Built between 1952 and 1956, the Customline was a mid-range sedan model offered by Ford, nestled between the entry-level Mainline and the well-equipped Crestline (from 1952 through '54) and Fairlane models. It was made available in two-door and four-door sedans, as well as a two-door coupe and four-door station wagon body style.


This one didn't hit American shores in its production life, but was popular in Europe and South America. Can you tell us the make and model?

The Ford Taunus was a car that got around on the global stage. It was built by Ford Germany between 1970 and 1982, as well as in Argentina from 1974 until 1984 and in Turkey from 1984 until 1994. The model shown here is a 1974 Ford Taunus 2000 GXL, produced in Argentina. It was followed in Germany by the Ford Sierra.


It's an iconic vehicle for an iconic hero, but it has its own origin story. What vehicle was used as the basis for the 1960s Batmobile?

Car customizer George Barris altered a lot of vehicles during his career, but the most famous is the Batmobile, built for the "Batman" television show that ran from 1966 through 1968. Barris based his vision off a concept car — the 1955 Lincoln Futura — which had unusual angles and a sharp, wing-like shape.


What is the name of this long-hooded beauty from 1936?

The Oldsmobile "F' and "L" series were made from 1932 through 1938 — the "F" came with a straight-six cylinder engine, while the "L" series was bigger and had a straight-eight engine. In 1939, the "F" series was renamed "Series 60," while its "L" sibling became the "Series 70" and "Series 80."


No matter if you love or hate the base model, you've got to admit that this car has had some style installed along the way. What type of car is it?

Built between 1975 and 1979, the American Motor Corporation's Pacer made an impression on the car-buying audience of the day, with some loving it and others loathing the design. The Pacer generally got very good reviews for the time and is still seen as being quite collectible. The AMC Pacer coupe pictured here, by the way, has been modified to a Pro-stock dragstrip car.


A variant of a popular model, this 1957 car didn't have problems finding a home. What's the make and model of the vehicle pictured here?

The Chevrolet Bel Air was restyled and given a more powerful engine in 1955, but sometimes you want a car with some growl that can still carry kids and groceries. Enter the Chevrolet Bel Air Nomad. This two-door station wagon still had the style and substance of the Bel Air line, but the extra cargo room made it the right vehicle for the job for many families.


This luxury car was inspired by the P-38 fighter plane. What's the name of this slick 1948 cruiser?

Hitting the roads in 1938, the sleek Series 61 replaced Cadillac's Series 60/65. By 1948, the post-war model had been inspired by the designs of the day; it sported, for example, tail fins inspired by the Lockheed P-38 fighter plane. The Sedanette also offered V8 power and a smooth ride.


While this brand doesn't exist anymore, it made an impact on auto design with automobiles such as the one pictured here. What's the make and model?

The Studebaker Corporation, headquartered in South Bend, Indiana, was one of the premier automakers in the United States. Founded in 1852 (it originally made wagons, buggies and equipment made for horse-drawn vehicles), the company eventually went out of business in the mid-1960s. The 1939 President pictured here was one of Studebaker's top-of-the-line vehicles for the time. It was made in four generations from 1926 through 1942, and then from 1955 through 1958.


What famous line from a famous maker is this custom car from 1930 based upon?

The Model A had big shoes to fill when it took over from Ford's Model T, which was the first car built for middle-class families for decades. The Model A first hit streets in 1927 and was replaced by the Model B in 1931. In order to appeal to buyers, the Model A was available in more than 30 body styles. Today, the Model A is a favorite among car customizing crowds.


A favorite among customizers, can you identify the make and model of this vehicle from 1933?

When the Great Depression hit, automakers scrambled for designs that would sell in a market that had hit the hardest of hard times. Plymouth's answer in 1933 was the DeLuxe Plymouth Six, a model which would become one of the automaker's best of the time and in later years a favorite of hot rodders and car customizers.


This vehicle was made for fun in the sun (it comes complete with wicker seats). What's the make and model of this car from 1959?

In 1958, Fiat sent a shipment of its 600 model to the Ghia design house in Italy. The result was the Fiat Ghia Jolly — a car made for fun in the sun. Sold in Europe and the United States, the Jolly had a very limited production run and cost twice as much as the standard Fiat 600s.


Its parent company ceased production in 1958, but this car from 1937 is a great example of the style of its day. What's the make and model?

Made between 1935 and 1937, the first-generation One-Twenty from the Packard Motor Car Company, shown here in the touring sedan body style, offered an inline eight-cylinder engine, newly created independent front suspension and a lot of style. The vehicle's second generation was in production from 1939 through 1941, when it was then replaced by the Packard 200.


We're not sure why someone would do this (we suspect the reason was "Why not?"), but what was the top part of this vehicle at one point in its life?

The third generation of the Chevrolet Corvette, knowns as the "Stingray," hit the streets in the 1968 model year. A drastic redesign from the second generation, known as the "Sting Ray" (two words), the "Mako Shark II" body style would define the vehicle's look for generations, to the current day.


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