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Hagerty
Hagerty Employee

This '31 Chevy "Sho Bird" is your 2022 Autorama Ridler winner

The Detroit Autorama returned this year, following a pandemic-related hiatus that canceled the 2021 event. While show organizers haven't yet released official attendance figures, the sense on the ground was that car lovers returned in droves. Lest you think that the Detroit Autorama is a showcase reserved for hot rods or wild customs based on [...]
https://www.hagerty.com/media/events/this-31-chevy-sho-bird-is-your-2022-autorama-ridler-winner/
146 REPLIES 146
Islander
Detailer

So, spend 2 and a half years & $500,000 for a $10,000 prize and eternal glory (maybe) - I guess.

It's quite a piece of work and maybe someone like Floyd Mayweather would and could buy it and actually drive it around.

I stand in bewildered wonderment.
Islander
Detailer

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

Ars Gratia Artis!
Jr1
Intermediate Driver

But ugly goes to the bone.
Tinkerah
Engineer

Bonus prize: eternal ridicule.
Huff
New Driver

Ugly .......
Herne
New Driver

Way too busy
BigDog
Intermediate Driver

Just another example of Show and Tell...Let me tell you how much money I have and I can show you! This type on money on display is almost a disgrace to the average car lover. I am 81 yrs old and my era, there were guys who had to do their own work, figure out how to take a part from one car and put it on another to make it better. Now all it takes to have a great car is have a great big check book. As one poster stated, the engineering is way and above but the functionality leaves a lot to be desired as this car could never be a driver.
mvillmer
Intermediate Driver

yeah.....no
ToraPyro
New Driver

I don't often post, though I was at the Autorama and couldn't let this one pass by. I think the judges totally missed the mark. From my view of the vehicle, it is doubtful that the vehicle is drivable. The fenders indicate that there is zero rear suspension travel. Add that to the exceedingly garish, and cluttered look of the front and what have you got? While looking at the Riddler contenders I commented to my friend that in some ways the entries are kind of sad as few, if any of them, will ever be driven and enjoyed as actual vehicles. BTW, I had a great time at the Autorama even though there weren't as many cars there as were at pre pandemic events. I hope we see the return of more next year.
Badnomad
New Driver

A lot of craftsmanship for an ugly result.
bmiller3tx
New Driver

I can't remember another Ridler winner that was in my opinion ugly and silly looking like this car. Way, way too much going on visually.
brsinbozeman
Pit Crew

Ghastly!
Camarojoe
Detailer

Looking at all eight cars, nothing this year was a 10. As usual great craftmanship. The 31 was the most outrageous so the defacto winner.
wayburn1
New Driver

I was there and felt the winner was a (well executed) tasteless over-build with one of everything. I could not believe upon hearing, on the way home, that it had won over the seven other way more worthy (in my opinion) examples of the art. The Devon Z, in particular, caught my eve.
Grumpyoldcoot
Intermediate Driver

If there was an award for Tackiness and bad taste, this car would win it hands-down!
Slick1
New Driver

I can appreciate the workmanship but the concept? Model for a Hot Wheels car?
Jr1
Intermediate Driver

Available next month from WalMart for $1.00.....
TonyT
Technician

Maybe the Autorama should consider another category: Majority home-built. The owner could document the process(es) required to build the car and have witness verification to back it up. I can see paint and upholstery being farmed out, but if the owner did those also, extra points. Then, the professionally built cars would be competing against each other and the backyard entries would have a better chance.
SilentBoy741
Instructor

I agree, I think the Ridler prize should have a requirement that the owner must have done at least 30% of the work, otherwise the prize and goes to the shop that actually did the build, not to the owner.
RokemRonnie
Instructor

It seems to me that the builders of Ridler winning cars prefer the increased business winning the Ridler will generate over the trophy.
Should Pebble Beach or other high level concours have separate classes for owner-restored cars?
RokemRonnie
Instructor

The '51 Oldsmobile that was a Great 8 finalist was self-built over 15 years in between customer jobs in his single-bay body shop.
LarryT
Pit Crew

Maybe not the worst thing I’ve ever seen, but right up there.
FloridaMarty
Instructor

Judging is political, not unbiased. Sometimes the best car wins, sometimes not. Which time was this?

FoxSpeed01
New Driver

Seriously? Pack mentality? A lot of you guys wouldn’t qualify to polish that winner. It was done to the owners desire to build something other than a cookie cutter 32 or Model A. He did it, Foose and the other big time builders couldn’t be bothered this year to submit an entry. No million dollar builds with accompanying TV video coverage. The judges were correct, they judged the winner as innovative, done to an exacting fit and finish. No paint by the industry leaders (?). Upholstery not by the usual. You don’t like the look…well hoopty do. Be a final 8 winner, then you’re comments could be taken more seriously.
JimVolgarino
New Driver

Actually, I could easily qualify to polish this car. I have polished plenty in my lifetime. I think the point of most of these comments is yes, there are some great innovations and engineering in the car. But a designer/owner needs to know when to stop. Garish chrome, mirrors, candy paint, bright lights...somehow, I don't think when this award was dreamed up in 1970 it was meant to be an indicator of how much money you can sink into a vehicle in order to get recognition. 

50s60s70s
Detailer

Don't get your undies too much in a twist, I like Metallica over opera and DaVinci over Jackson Pollock everyone has their preferences on art and cars. When the two are combined the passion runs pretty high. 

 

rockable
Pit Crew

Words fail me. Not my idea of a good looking build....at all.
rockable
Pit Crew

Words fail me. Not my idea of a beautiful build....at all.
Paco
New Driver

Poor Taste, Please don't take it to SEMA!
66PontiacGTO
Pit Crew

I don't think the lighting helps this car.

I'll take clean and simple. $500,000 would stock a nice 10 car garage.
JohninNC
Instructor

Looks like a wolf spider from the front.
GeorgeWA
Detailer

Sorry but I think the winner of this years Riddler award is UGLY… What’s up with the front end ? In my eye Discombobulated … I’ve always Previous Riddler winners…
MustangJim
Technician

The workmanship is exquisite, the technology is awesome but its all just a little bit over the top for me. The other cars look better to me..but that is subjective. My favorite is the Olds,
RokemRonnie
Instructor

The Olds was kind of a throwback choice by the judges. No LS with a Tremec or custom tube frame. It still had the original frame that was modified to take a Mustang II front end and Chevy Blazer rear end, and had a 350 SBC with a GM400 automatic.
MoparToGo64
Pit Crew

love the paint, interior, junk the front end. In a show - I would just walk by it.
MattK
Advanced Driver

Every time I look at that thing, I am reminded of Hector the robot from Saturn 3. Lol.
RabidTribble
New Driver

I think it's unfair to make the call on something like this without seeing the car in person. Even though the article covers a lot of the details and engineering, vehicles like this (and, of course, the other contenders) really need to be seen up close to be appreciated. That being said, when I first saw these pictures, I thought the car looked pretty odd... but the details and engineering truly are amazing.
XXXMIKEXXX
Pit Crew

That just shows why you can't win unless you spend MILLIONS !!!!!!
Spudsly
Intermediate Driver

No Thanks ! We will take the Black Cameron Hot Rod
KevinK
New Driver

Incredible workmanship to a level that is beyond my comprehension. Personal opinion though is that the design is way too busy, especially in the front.
Ragster
Detailer

The CLEAN '34 Ford Roadster gets MY vote.
RokemRonnie
Instructor

A lot of people, including some of the Ridler finalists, thought the winner would be that Ford, which had a Boss Nine engine in it. With the exception of the winner, all of the finalists had fairly clean lines. My sentimental favorite was the '51 Olds because it was self-built and kind of an old school hot rod with a 350 small block Chevy, not a LS. The couple that owned it were thrilled to be finalists. I had the opportunity to talk to the head judge about it and he simply said, "It's a nice car."

Much as I was charmed by the Olds and its owners, I would have probably picked the winner from amongst the Studebaker pickup, the '36 Pontiac, the Devin Z, or the two Mopars.
Buzz
Detailer

I googled, “ Tarantula mates with ‘31 Chevy”, and this is what popped up. They must have been lean on cars this year, because beyond fit and finish quality, that car is so confused it doesn’t know what it wants to be.
grandpadodge
New Driver

Was told if you can't something nice... But I'm sorry, I can"t keep quiet on this one! This thing made me throw up in my mouth. This is hideous. If you have that much money to throw away, next time donate it to a worthy cause. This is beyond ugly, all the way to butt fugly. must not have spent all their money on the car though, saved some to bribe the judges!
50s60s70s
Detailer

Most definitely a beautiful static sculpture made of chrome and paint......but not a car in the true sense. Without air filters ground, clearances functional tires of a correct design to actually use the mythic engine horsepower, it will sit in someone's car art collection unlikely to ever be seen on the road.
But then again.... I drive everything in my collection at every opportunity.
Just saying....
jondoc
New Driver

Like others, I understand "To each His Own" but to me this is way, Way, WAY Too Much over the TOP!!! If you're a "Bucks Up Person" then you can afford to throw $$$ at a project but it certainly doesn't look like something I'd jump it to tour with. Way too Impractical. Typically we see projects like this on B/J or Mecum Auctions in the coming years and it sells for considerably less than the cost of the original build. I'd rather takes those $$ and build 4. 5. or 6 nice and useable/practical cars.
merlebalke
Advanced Driver

Allow me to list alphabettically my favorite things about this car: 1. The color.

Kind of a short list. I enjoy watching episodes of Chip Foose draws a car and one of the words he uses frequently is elegant. A word I would never use for this.

I used to consider The Ridler the top award with the AMBR trophy second, but now I've had to rethink that. AMBR did a reboot after the 2008 winner with it's bizarre show car only interior. Now all the AMBR finalists have to actually be shown to run and drive and they are all beautiful cars. Here's hoping the Ridler starts going to beautiful cars again.
ekonsmo
New Driver

What were the judges thinking? This has to be the ugliest Ridler award ever!
jaysalserVW
Advanced Driver

Let's see---judging was not based upon UseFULness--of course, of course. Therefore, judging must have been based upon UseLESSness. In that case, this car gets high marks from me! LOL
BillL
New Driver

That is a seriously ugly car. All of the other finalists were quite attractive and tasteful. Ouch!