This Car Has Everything (Apr, 1957)

This Car Has Everything

WHEN Don Swartzwelder drives his car into a gas station the hood raises by itself, stunning the attendant and making Don moderately happy. A Fort Lauderdale, Fla., TV technician, Don has made a hobby of gooking up his ’38 Ford with gadgets until she now boasts a TV set, PA system, electrically-locked doors and gas tank cap, record player, 110-volt utility outlet, self-raising and lowering hood and fog lights that go on automatically if headlights fail. Engine is a full-race ’48 Merc, souped up to top out at 123 mph.

  1. Al Bear says: January 14, 20093:13 am

    Nice! pimp your NINETEEN year old ride! (old enough to vote) I bet his car was worth $65.00 and with the add ons (you don’t want to 1958 know)

    So, this sillyness was going on back then too! It’s a shame they didn’t have rims, because they’d be on the 38′ Ford ASAP!

    And yeah! it has everything but seatbelts 😉 screw safety! it has a record playa’ 😉

  2. gmcgath says: January 14, 200911:36 am

    “Gooking up”? Was that a current expression?

  3. Eliyahu says: January 14, 20092:32 pm

    Don’t forget… This was 1957, and the public hadn’t been fully sold on the idea that a car must be replaced every two or three years. We had lots and lots of pre-war cars in common use back then, and no one really thought anything about it. That spare tire looks like it could stand being replaced by something with tread, though.

  4. Tracy B. says: January 14, 20094:18 pm

    What about air conditioning, power steering, and power brakes? The windows better be power too. Don’t forget a TV camera to augment the rearview mirror.

  5. wormhole says: January 14, 20095:22 pm

    And if you dont have a swanky car to stun the peasants, why not use a hammer its cheaper!!

  6. Rick says: January 15, 20092:53 pm

    That 45 rpm record player must have sounded great going over potholes.


  7. Dave says: March 31, 20091:50 am

    “…stunning the attendant and making Don moderately happy.”

    Easy there Don, you’ll give yourself a hernia!

  8. Don Swartzwelder says: February 2, 20106:52 pm

    I, the builder of the ’38 Ford Coupe is still up and going
    I never thought for a second I would ever hear anything about that car
    After all that was 84 years ago
    My granddaughter came up with it while googling my name
    Thanks for all the comments

  9. Don Swartzwelder says: February 2, 20106:54 pm

    Goofed up on the year
    It was 53 years ago— not 84

  10. Carlos says: August 4, 20107:46 pm

    Well Don you should be on Pimp My Ride, and all the modern car customizing industry should call you the father of that industry. You deserve credit.

  11. Don Swartzwelder says: August 5, 20105:36 am

    Thanks for the great uplift. That car and I spent a lot of wonderful fun times together.
    Perhaps you too have built a project that will stay with you forever. If so would love to
    hear about it.


  12. Jen Brittingham says: October 20, 20109:03 am

    This car was built by my grandfather….a true genius! HE now lives in an incredible house that he designed…it’s a pyramid!

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