The famous Goodguys Rod and Custom Association brought its 13th annual Nashville Nationals to the north bank of the Cumberland River in Nashville, TN. Nissan Stadium, home of the Tennessee Titans, played host to an array of classics May 11-12. Despite near record high temperatures, car enthusiasts descended on the Music City to show off their pride and joy or to check out some dream rides.
The trend of tricking out trucks is alive and well, as everything with a pickup bed on it from the 1930’s to the newly-added 1980’s (Goodguys now allows entries up to 1987, much to the chagrin of some purists) was a hot-ticket item. I don’t only mean pickups of all vintages were popular. It was nice to see a little brand diversity with a few Dodge trucks thrown in with the usual Chevy and Ford pickups. Even a few Studebakers showed up. Of course, Chevrolet bowties were by far the most common. Whether you like ’em lifted or lowered, restored or ratty, there was a truck at the Nashville Nationals you would probably have appreciated. While I rarely know the exact year of a classic truck, I can almost always get the range down. I assume the reason it is usually harder to pinpoint the year on a classic pickup is they tended to have smaller year-to-year changes than the cars of the same years.
Goodguys is known for showcasing some amazing hot rods, and for good reason. One was a car I had seen numerous times in pictures in the past few months. It’s a gorgeous teal 1930 Model A Sedan that won the Hot Rod of the Year award from Goodguys in 2017. Power is delivered from a supercharged 354 Chrysler FirePower Hemi. Don’t feel bad if you can’t tell what year an old hot rod is. I made my head hurt from trying to figure out the differences in cars from this era, and I would still be clueless if I hadn’t read an article for a give-away of a Model A compared to a ’32 Ford. That’s the little sun visor above the windshield. Model As have them; ’32 Fords don’t. Of course, that can be removed, but this one wasn’t. I also found an article about this car from last year that has “1930 Model A” in the title. Real journalism here, folks.
I would be remiss not to mention the ’32 Pontiac Coupe as well. As I was taking a few pictures of it, the owner walked over and talked for a while. He mentioned that he had to build everything forward of the firewall from scratch because the car is so rare. If the car wasn’t hard enough to find, he was able to keep it Poncho-powered with a rare 421 Tri-Power making it go.
The level of detail on so many of these cars is beyond description. No expense was spared on some of these customs that easily cost more than many houses. The Top 10 from the show absolutely blew me away. One stood out above all the rest. A heavily customized 1936 Pontiac Sedan. Shocking, right? I’m talking about another Pontiac. This one would be special to anyone. Outside, glowing pearl white paint and the unusual style of a 30’s Pontiac grabs your eye. Under the hood, there’s a GM LT4 making enough power to get the Tin Indian up and running.
Never mind that, the interior of this car really shines, and it takes a lot for me to care about a car’s interior. The gauges. Oh my gosh the gauges. The gauges are in a sphere and spin to display the information. Combined with perfect brown leather and Pontiac badges everywhere, this car was the pinnacle of customization. Oh, and the Imperial convertible and 2nd Gen Charger parked next to it were pretty nice too.