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Readers' Rockets: Ford Zephyr + Falcon XP coupe + VP Commodore + HQ Kingswood

18 Jan 2020 Features

Readers' Rockets: Ford Zephyr + Falcon XP coupe + VP Commodore + HQ Kingswood

We check out some of our readers' rides from the December issue of Street Machine

Darren Lawler
1959 MkII Ford Zephyr

Ford Zephyr

“I HAVE owned my Zephyr for eight years. I bought it complete and eventually rebuilt the engine and transmission to suit. I found the engine block in a garage on a farm just outside the ACT; it’s a 347ci Windsor that we fitted with a turbo cam from Comp Cams. All the parts came from Summit in the USA.

Ford Zephyr engine bay

I fitted a set of eBay-sourced turbos at first, just to see if I liked them – I did! So then I contacted a mate who owns Fyshwick Exhaust, and he sorted new manifolds and new turbos, wastegates, blow-off valve and screamer pipes – job done. The motor is backed by a C6 auto and nine-inch. Jake Edwards tuned it for me and we achieved 450hp at the wheels with under 10psi, still with no intercooler.

Ford Zephyr interior

Future mods will include a full red leather interior and water-meth injection, and maybe fuel injection and new independent front suspension. Many thanks to Mick for helping build the Windsor, and Raff for building all the piping.” Photos: Ben Hosking


Mario Tanti
1965 Ford Falcon XP coupe

Ford Falcon XP

“IN 1986 I picked up this XP coupe from a small car yard in Queanbeyan, NSW. Little did I know a full rebuild was on its way.

Ford Falcon XP

After a complete pull-down and sandblasting, the roof was cut off and refitted as a vinyl hardtop/convertible. A half-chassis was added, and once all the panelwork was completed, the car was ready for paint. I went for an original colour: Acacia Yellow.

Ford Falcon XP engine bay

The XP runs a 302 Windsor with Edelbrock heads, 600 Holley and a mild cam. The transmission is a tricked-up C4 auto, and runs back to a modified BF Falcon diff. Wheels are 15x8in Simmons V4s with custom centre caps.

Ford Falcon XP dash

The interior is trimmed in Saddle Brown tuck-and-roll, with custom handmade woodgrain inserts. I also had a custom alloy thermostat housing, shock tops, wheel caps, dash knobs and fuel cap machined, and to top it all off I added an original XT GT steering wheel and XY door mirrors. Over the past 30 years I have won numerous awards at Summernats, the Ford Nationals and various other car shows. The XP gets driven on a regular basis for car runs and outings with my family and friends.” Photos: Ben Hosking


Justin Falla
1993 Holden VP Commodore

Holden VP Commodore

“I PURCHASED the VP back in 2006. It was painted as it is now, but was just a stocker and had all standard running gear. I then moved up to Brissy and took the car with me, and at this point I was living next door to Andy Coles and meeting all the Spot On Performance boys, which started the direction for more horsepower.

Holden VP Commodore engine bay

The first combo was a built 3.8-litre V6 with a Vortech blower set-up, good enough for 430hp and fourth-gear hoops. It then sat again for a couple years due to work commitments, and during this time I contemplated what set-up to go with. Eventually I decided to go with an LSA, with Tremaniac Racing heads and ported blower, backed by a built, transbraked TH400 through Benny at Elite Automatics.

Holden VP Commodore interior

The Holley Dominator EFI was tuned by Ricky Fenwick, and the Aftermarket Industries fuel system flows into Bosch 2000cc injectors. On the hub dyno the car made 723hp.” Photos: Steve Kelly


Jason Hans
1972 Holden HQ Kingswood ute

Holden HQ ute

“I AM the proud owner of this HQ Kingswood ute, which I restored from the ground up. It’s taken me 17 years on and off, including every day for the past five years (in my spare time around work and family, and with limited funds to work with) to rebuild this pride and joy.

Holden HQ ute

It’s powered by a 355ci small-block Chev topped by a 650cfm Holley carb, backed by a two-speed Powerglide, 3000rpm stall converter and a nine-inch with 3.55:1 gears. Inside I added custom trim, GTS instruments and a Hurst shifter. I also custom-made the hard vinyl tray cover, and installed blue LED lighting in the engine bay, underbelly, tray area and interior.

Holden HQ ute

I have entered it in the Beaudesert Show ’n’ Shine for the past two years, receiving People’s Choice in 2018 and 2019 and Top Ute in 2019.”

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