2010 Taurus-based Thunderbird coupes. I just saw a Taurus-based T-bird coupe on another website, and wanted to link to these two similar chops of mine, and couldn't find them on my blog. I might not have "labeled" them correctly, or maybe I just never posted them on the blog. In either case, these are my ideas for a modern AWD Taurus-based T-bird coupe. The top one is my ideal Thunderbird, ie, pillarless coupe with classic Sixties T-bird cues. The bottom one is more of a modern version of the last 5-seat Thunderbird, the '89-96 or whenever they stopped building it, lol, a 2 door pillared sport coupe. These two examples show just how much diversity can be achieved in Photoshop, as both began as a new 4-door Taurus sedan.
Saturday, March 26, 2011
Wednesday, March 16, 2011
Charger R/T coupe—With thanks to PaulNYC for suggesting a proper 2012 2 door Charger! I've thought about doing a chop like this before, but until Paul mentioned it earlier today, it really didn't hit home how perfect it might be. I started with the new-for-2012 Charger R/T 4-door sedan, and added styling cues from the now-classic '68-'70 version. Flying buttressed C pillars and the oversized chrome gas cap are the obvious changes, well, besides the deletion of the rear doors and B pillar. I also made the scallops on the doors more akin to those on those '60s Chargers; double, instead of the single indents on the current car, which gave me a perfect location for the red, black and chrome '68 R/T logo. The black glass roof and tweaked and enlarged wheels round out the changes to this large, muscular Dodge coupe. I'm not sure that there is room in Dodge's lineup these days for a pillarless coupe like this Charger; the Challenger already utilizes a 116" wheelbase. But in my mind, and Paul's I hope, it's a shoe-in!
*Dodge White Hat Special refers to a marketing scheme Dodge employed quite often in the late '60s and early '70s. Various cars in the Dodge lineup were given multiple options at a lower price than if bought separately, in hopes of moving more vehicles. Frequently for these advertisements, very Swingin' Sixties models were photographed, dressed in white cowboy hats standing next to fairly mundane Polara hardtops and Coronet sedans, lol.
Thursday, March 10, 2011
Cayman Targa—Yeah, I know the Cayman is basically the hardtop version of the convertible Boxster, so the idea of an open-top Cayman might seem a bit superfluous... The original Porsche Targa was much more than just a convertible though. The brushed aluminum rollover hoop added rigidity and great looks, and the wraparound rear window, removable by the way, added a bit of glamor to the pretty Porsche 911/912 coupe. The removable top gave three ways to drive the car,—fully closed, fully open, or with just the roof open like a great big sunroof.
I started with a special edition Cayman, in a beautiful shade of frog-green with black stripes. I changed it to gold even though the original Targa isn't quite fifty years old. I believe it was introduced forty-five years ago, but that's close enough for today! Besides the change in roof design, I shortened the front overhang by several inches for a more proportioned look, even though I suppose bumper standards wouldn't be met this way, and enlarged and darkened the wheels, keeping the bright yellow brake calipers. I also added my now almost-trademark cobblestones and a nice cloudy sky and distant island.
Wednesday, March 9, 2011
Mustang Sedan, Take Two—I modified the rear bumper/apron assembly from my original chop below, with more sculpting matching up with the side contours. I think this lessens the bumper's thickness. I also made the roofline "faster" and added a dark-tinted roof panel, emphasizing the slope more. I think this makes it a bit more muscular. I also added a "5.0" badge to the front fenders.
Mustang Sport Sedan—Yes, the purists always hate these, and that's why Photoshop is so much fun. I started with an image of a Saleen-modified Mustang, hence the ribbed rear panel, quad exhausts, wheels and side skirting (although I modified the skirting, making it more "adult" and less boy-racer). I added the Mustang logo to the rear cove. I figured as long as I was committing blasphemy by adding the second set of doors, I might as well leave off the well-known Mustang medallion in this area (the gas cap on the original series) and use the prancing horse instead. I lengthened the wheelbase by about eight inches to make enough room for the rear door to be functional.
Would Ford ever build a Mustang sedan? I don't think so, but I don't see why they haven't utilized the rear-wheel drive platform for a sedan with a different name. It would make a nice Lincoln sport sedan.
Tuesday, March 8, 2011
Kia Optima coupe—When I started this chop, I had every intention of changing the side window profile, to differentiate it from the sedan. I tried a full side window extending almost to the trunk. I tried adding a severely rising beltline and a pointed rear window, much like a 1971-72 Dodge Charger. I tried making the rear side window much narrower and more formal. Nothing worked as well as the original window profile Peter Schreyer used on his sedan. He is truly the master of design these days—you can't mess with the maestro!
In the end, in addition to deleting the rear doors and making the front doors longer, I changed mostly the details. I moved the Kia logo from the hood into the grille; the way Schreyer's new Kia grilles narrow in the middle, almost the same as 1960s Dodge "barbells," makes a natural position for the oval logo. It emphasizes it and cleans up the hood. I also slightly changed the taillight lenses, adding neutral glass for most of the space. I tweaked the wheels, but seeing as I've often taken these wheels for other chops, I left them in position for this one. I adjusted the colors of the jpeg, added the pattern to the surface the car is sitting on and added some shadowing. Oh yeah, I deleted the silly front fender vents, I'm sure they're not functional. That's about it!
Saturday, March 5, 2011
My de Tomaso Pantera for 2012—Autoblog.com published a short post this morning saying the De Tomaso may introduce a new Pantera next year. They showed a new crossover, the Deauville, based heavily on the Cadillac SRX in Geneva last week. It wasnt' pretty, in fact it was downright dowdy. When I read they were going to take a stab at the Pantera, I immediately thought of the Mercury Cyclone I chopped in 2007, and decided to "rechop" it into a Pantera. The filtered look I chose back in 2007 made the recycled chop faster and easier to do. Click image to enlarge.
Good suggestion about making it yellow, PX. I like this chop much better now. That was the color the Pantera was first advertised in the USA back in 1971. Here's my original Pantera dealer brochure from 1971. It's printed on heavy stock paper with a beautiful gloss varnish on every page.
My original Cyclone Hybrid sports car was based on a Ford GT photo.
Thursday, March 3, 2011
1941 Buick Century—This isn't one of my regular "chops." I didn't change the lines of the car, I don't think the Harley Earl-directed design can be improved at all! Rather, I changed the color, added the rear fender skirts from a Roadmaster, and completely changed the location, foreground and background, for a more attractive overall composition.
I found this classic Buick online at a car dealer's site, link below. The car was painted in what I believe was a non-stock bright blue. This particular example is REALLY desirable, even in stock condition, but had been mechanically massaged. Essentially a "resto-mod", this rare Buick is now equipped with a vintage Paxton supercharger, which must make Buick's famed straight-eight engine sound fantastic, as well as adding more than 60-horsepower.
I decided to use Photoshop to make it look more like what I might have ordered if I had been around in 1941: a dark cranberry lower body with a platinum gray roof and center hood stripe, in the Buick style of the day. I added the rear fender skirts to emphasize the glorious fastback roof and forward-slanting B pillars. I left the tires blackwalls, which is how I would show almost any classic car. It's personal taste of course, but I just don't care for the wide-whites most old cars sport at car shows these days. I know they're "correct" for the period, but if you look at any original photo taken back in the day, they were quite rare on daily drivers. I love the "tough" look of the large black sidewalls also.
• Link to this resto-modded "banker's hotrod" 1941 Buick Century sedanette.
Wednesday, March 2, 2011
Lincoln Mark Coupes—On paper, both of these Lincolns might sound the same: all-wheel drive, twin-turbo EcoBoost V6 hybrid drivetrains, two-door bodies with full-boat luxury interiors. In reality, they couldn't be more different. Illustrated at the top is my Mark GT, a long and relatively low luxury coupe with wraparound glass and a thick B pillar, based on the MKT. The bottom version is a much shorter and taller, more futuristic Mark, based on an Aston Martin concept, with roof styling more akin to the pillarless Marks of yore. I'd say the top version could be sold today with no problem, and the bottom one might be five-years in the future. As much as I am a fan of Harley Earl's "Longer, lower, wider" mantra, the reality is cars of the future will become shorter, taller and narrower, to take up as little physical space as possible for their stated automotive missions.
Tuesday, March 1, 2011
Delgiata Panel Van—This is a little Ferrari-based "van" I chopped several years ago, as a delivery van for my art! The base photo was a Ferrari 599, but I shortened the hood a LOT as my version would be propelled by a 4-cylinder hybrid engine. This little wagon was the latest model in my own car company, Delgiata, which I created when I was about 10-years old. I was reminded today of this older chop, when I checked out Autoblog's Geneva 2011 coverage. Ferrari is showing a white FF, its new four-wheel drive Shooting Break, click here.