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Weekend Edition: Hot August Nights – The Mercuik

Bradley Brownell August 7, 2016 Car Shows, Weekend Edition 16 Comments

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Walk around the back of this 1951 Mercury custom, and you’d never guess anything was out of the ordinary. There are plenty of old Mercs turned into hot rod low-and-slow type cruisers. It’s got loud paint and lake pipes, tucked and chopped and channeled everything else. However, when you move around to the front of the car, you get a bit of a WHOA moment. Check it out after the jump.

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That’s right, that there is a Series II 3800 supercharged. Sitting transverse. Meaning it’s Front Wheel Drive and automatic shifted.
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But just wait, there’s one more crazy secret lurking here. Check out the interior.

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Yes, that’s a full Buick Riviera interior in there.

The owner wasn’t around, so I’m not exactly sure how they did this, but it looks to me like they grafted the entire body of a 1951 Mercury on top of a 1996-1999 Riviera Supercharged chassis. That’s just crazy. I applaud the work, but I’m forced to stand back in utter befuddlement.

  • Zentropy

    Why would anyone willingly convert a car to FWD? And then destroy a beautiful dash (even if aged and weathered) by replacing it with 90’s plastics? Between that and the chopped top, I would not give this car a second glance at a show or on the street. Great paint, but what a disappointment.

    • Fred Talmadge

      Just to do something different.

      • Zentropy

        A ’51 Merc is art. A late-90s Buick: completely forgettable transportation. A respectable stab at “something different” would be infusing a ’90s Buick with classic Merc duds, not the reverse. I love restomods, but only if the donor is worthy.

        • Sjalabais

          Isn’t “worthiness” inherently subjective? Maybe that kid was born in a Riviera and it’s become a car of legend to him. 50 years from now, people might mystify the 3800. I agree it’s a strange little duckling, but that’s precisely what makes it interesting.

          • Zentropy

            Fifty years from now I’ll be happy to concede to such an argument. But in 2016, the late-90s Buick interior (and FWD engine) sucks.

    • Batshitbox

      Because it’s WRONG! Chicks dig bad boys.

    • dead_elvis, inc.

      What else are you gonna do when you’ve a ’51 Merc body without running gear, and a good-but-rolled supercharged Buick laying around? Run what ya brung, work with what you’ve got.

      If it bothers some stick-in-the-mud types, that’s a bonus!

  • CruisinTime

    That is some sweet ride,imagine how many years of work.

  • I’ve seen far worse old car bodies merged with new car chassis. This is pretty mild, actually.

    One would assume they were after modern car turn key reliability and drivability in a cool looking old car package. Seems like a lot of work for questionable gains, but what do I know?

    • Sjalabais

      I’m not opposed at all to the concept as, say, an everyday driver next to a weekend classic for The Real Feelz™. But for that use, it is just a bit much with the lipstick paint and low roof. Boils down to taste, of course.

  • Scoutdude

    I think I’ve seen that car at a show and yes it is a Merc body over the remains of the Buick so it is now a unibody car. And yeah is was done because he could.

  • Rover 1

    A perfect illustration of why we got the phrase,

    “Just because you can, doesn’t mean you should.”

    • It’s also a perfect illustration of why we have the phrase,
      “What the hell, why not.”

      • dead_elvis, inc.

        This is a much more reliable road to fun, or at least hijinks.

        (Related: it’s better to ask forgiveness than permission)

  • Here’s one I saw at Goodguys back in 2003. A ’55 Chevy with a Chrysler Concorde greenhouse. In this case I have no idea what the goal was. The RWD bones of the Chevy remain while the interior is a mix of old and new, arguably the most successful part of the car (not saying much). Certainly that greenhouse does nothing to help the classic looks of the Chevy.

    http://www.salguod.net/gallery/good_guys_2003/1955_chevy_concorde_1-photo.jpg
    http://www.salguod.net/gallery/good_guys_2003/1955_chevy_concorde_2-photo.jpg

    It turns out the car was built that year and later sold at Barrett Jackson in 2009 for over $62K. Impressive fabrication resulting in Easy Rod looks

    http://www.barrett-jackson.com/Events/Event/Details/1955-CHEVROLET-2-DOOR-CUSTOM-COUPE-70942

    • Sean McMillan

      that’s just awful