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Weekend Edition – An Edsel turned Art Car Construction Shovel, and it’s for sale…

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Let’s continue with the Hooniverse Weekend Edition with this very odd vehicle currently being offered on eBay. This is a 1958 Edsel Pacer 4-Door Hardtop that has been made into a Caterpillar Construction Shovel of some sort, used as a Parade Car (or Art Car if you prefer), and now the owner is letting it go. So, what do you think of this rolling art?

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When you think of Art Cars, what generally comes to mind? I think of these rolling pieces of questionable taste as part of the same counter culture that produces tie-dyed t-shirts, pot brownies, and free love parties. The people who create these “Art Cars” tend to be “Free Spirits” themselves, and they see the car as a way of expressing themselves. Well, it seems that the “Art Car” movement has now been adopted by regular people who are politically conservative as a way of expressing their views, with this particular Edsel as a shining example.

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According to the listing:

This car was rescued from the crusher in the year 2003 with 30k plus miles on the odometer. It had been sitting idle since 1961. This car now operates solely as a parade and display vehicle and is not street legal in its present form. The car has been a regular entry in the Houston Art Car Parade presented by The Orange Show [the largest Art Car parade in the world] and won several trophies. It has also participated in numerous other parades including the prestigious Dallas Children’s Medical Center Christmas Parade (by invitation only) and the HEB Thanksgiving Day Parade. It has also been on television all across the United States and in car publications as far away as Germany. It consistently ranks as one of the most popular entrants in every event it is entered.

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Presently the car has a 351 engine from a 1979 Thunderbird with unknown mileage. The transmission is a 3 speed automatic,converted to a floor shift. The car has two 100 amp alternators and two optima red top batteries. One battery under the hood starts the car and the other is located on the front passenger floor board to power the accessories. The car is powered by a professionally installed propane system similar to that found on a forklift. The Fuel tank resides in the trunk cavity. The car has an aluminum radiator with two electric fans. Original wiring is still on the car but most of the added items were done with new wiring that augments the original wiring. The front bumpers have been re-chromed and look great, also the brake lines and wheel cylinders have been replaced.

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The addition of the front end loader, backhoe, and running boards were accomplished by welding steel and trailer hitch receivers on the frame of the car, thus these items are essentially plug and play. The Front end loader is made of aluminum, wood and sheet metal. It is static and does not move. The backhoe is made of wood and sheet metal. Tires are matching 15” truck tires with good tread. Windows are stiff but do roll up and down except for the passenger front window which goes up and down without the crank.

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The car has roof and trunk mounted yellow caution light bars. The trunk mounted seat, OEM stickers and back up alarm are authentic Caterpillar items. The backhoe controls are for looks only and do not function. Headlights wig wag and the turn signals flash in unison. The car has a stock type horn. Lights are operated by a control panel mounted at the glove box location.

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Included is a mannequin named Barry with a nice suit, tie and Obama mask (no teleprompter). Also, an extra propane fuel tank. The motor runs great and sounds cool. The exhaust is similar to a tractor. I have not driven the car faster than 20 miles an hour or used the third gear. Recently serviced with new belts, oil change (Mobil one filter) and rocker arm gaskets. This machine is ready to be seen by the masses and could help decide the next election…All the hard work has been done.

The car shows well and is stored indoors at all times. Buyer should understand that the car requires towing to and from its parade destination and assembly. Assembly is accomplished easily by three people in about 30 minutes or less. Vehicle is sold as is where is with no warranties or guarantees written or implied. We will help coordinate delivery and instruct the new owner with set up. Delivery costs are the buyer’s responsibility.

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It looks like this is a no reserve auction, and the current bid as of this morning is $1,302. What do you think the final bid will bring? See the listing, 1958 Edsel Pacer Parade Car and tell me what you think of this particular “Art Car”.

Currently there are "15 comments" on this Article:

  1. $kaycog says:

    I really like Edsels, and I've been a huge fan of this Edsel art car for a long time. This is the first time I've seen it with the Obamaish mannequin in the trunk.

  2. dukeisduke says:

    I know I saw this car awhile back on the Hemmings Blog. The seller says there's no title, and the car hasn't been registered since the '60s, but if that's the case, why does it have a Texas antique vehicle plate? The front one is an old personalized plate from 1984 (back then, if you had personalized plates, you had to get new ones every year).

    The 100 amp alternators must be pretty old, because they're huge (at least the top one). My '95 F-150 had a 95 amp, and it wasn't very big.

    • OA5599 says:

      You can buy old license plates at swap meets or online from collectors. That doesn't necessarily mean that you register them through the state afterwards. If the seller is representing that the car is unregistered, I would tend to believe it.

      Incidentally, the seller's ebay profile shows that this car was purchased in another auction about a month ago. http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?V

      The prior auction was for charity, so perhaps this person bid to support the charitable organization and doesn't particularly want the car. Interesting combination of vehicles and drag queen items in the seller's profile. I'm sure whoever buys this will have an interesting story out of the transaction.

  3. Sjalabais says:

    When "why" and "not" have a constructive get-together. Or not.

  4. Batshitbox says:

    Did this guy just run out of applications for this, er… statement? "Maybe someone on E-Bay has a political or social agenda that needs the association of a reliable construction equipment company with a marketing failure from the personal automobile sector. I'm all out. Comes with a mask depicting the current president but you can supply one of your choosing. Bid High and Bid Often, it's a free market!"

    I'll bet there's someone out there who needs spare Edsel parts as well as spare tractor parts, though. More likely.

  5. parkwood60 says:

    Honestly I don't see why you can't just register it and drive it. People act as if a title is as hard to get as US citizenship. I've never had an issue in California with any old car or bike I tried to register.

  6. scoudude says:

    I've seen this car for sale on E-bay many times over the last decade or so or occasionally looking, like once or twice per year, for Edsels there. I'm not sure why in all this time the owner never bothered to either get a bonded title or mail order one from a state that doesn't issue titles on older cars.

  7. LEROOOY says:

    I saw this at the Houston Art Car Parade a few months ago! It was overheating pretty bad by the end of the parade route – 90-degree, humid day + hundreds of pounds of extra weight + parade-crawl speeds + Edsel = that delicious burning-waffle smell…

  8. jalopjackie says:

    I can't help but wonder how many people you would annoy if you bought this and returned it to factory-spec.

  9. Alan Murfee says:

    Though it look weird but this one of the most creative thing that I can see. I appreciate the creativity that has been tested on this old car. I am impressed.

  10. Jeff says:

    We were in the 2013 4th of July parade in Friendswood, Tx. in this car, it was a hoot and got a lot of laughs… The words Edsel and shovel ready have become connected with this car

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