Hooniverse Asks: What Was the Most Successful Automotive Repurposing?


Whether it was the AE86 tail lights that found a new home on the back end of the Lotus Esprit, or Henrik Fisker leveraging models from two different car makers for his short-lived coachbuilt Latigos, the repurposing of cars and parts is an endeavor as old as the biz.
What we want to talk about today is Scirocco tail lights on Aston Martins and Matrix instrument clusters on Pontiac Solsti. What do you think is history’s most successful automotive repurposing?
Image: Supercars.net 

31 Comments

    1. The windshield was also a Ford part, it started out as the rear window on a Galaxie station wagon.

          1. Here I was assuming it had doors… maybe with microscopic shut lines?? D’oh!!
            I’ll add it to the Isettas and Heinkel Trojan as vehicles with a door at the front, all similarly vulnerable to front end damage!

    1. If I ever get stupid rich, Mega Millions Lottery Winner kind of money, I’m going to get a Barris Batmobile and convert it back to a Lincoln Futura.

  1. Since the anniversary of D-day was yesterday: the M4A4 variant of the Sherman tank, which used a 30-cylinder Chrysler engine built out of 5 straight-6’s.

    1. speaking of M4 shermans, the amphibious duplex drive version used an R-985 P&W radial engine as the air cooled engine worked well when a little wet and was a lot lighter making it easier to “float” a loaded for action tank ashore. curious looks when passing troops down the road when they saw the two propellers under the back of the shermans

    1. Same for the McLaren F1 – tail lights were off the shelf parts. Another one just came to mind, that the GT40 that had Corvair tail lights.

    1. My brother just had his ’77 MGB refreshed. He’d bought it with a ’62 (?) Buick 215 which needed attention. If it was a GT, I’d have it myself.

    2. How about the Olds 215 blocks repurposed to form the basis for the Repco F1 V8’s?

      1. There was also a beefed-up Can-Am version. I still kick myself for passing on one listed in Hemmings over 20 years ago.

        1. Do you mean a Traco Olds? Or a Repco V8? I think those topped out at 5-litres for F5000, and there was a 4.3L version used in sports cars.

  2. Slightly off-topic for repurposing, but I once purchased a vanload of parts left behind when a Rover P4 fanatic passed on. I spent a lot of time cross-referencing a ton of NOS Lucas parts in little orange boxes. The old Rover parts all found good homes eventually, but I really cleaned up on a bunch of floor-mounted headlight dimmer switches. Many Rover people then operated on a budget and tended to barter as often as buy old parts, but these switches were apparently also used in Aston Martins and Austin-Healeys whose owners bid them up through the roof on eBay. I had driven 500 miles to salvage as many of these parts before they were trashed (there had been a house fire, and it was about to be rebuilt). Making some bucks on those headlight dimmers made it much easier to donate many of the remaining parts to good causes and sell more at very reasonable prices to Rover friends.

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