Detroit — The 70th annual Meguiar’s Detroit Autorama rolls into downtown Detroit on February 24-26, 2023 at the Huntington Place (formerly known as Cobo Center). If you are into wild rides featuring America’s coolest hot rods, muscle cars, custom cars, truck and motorcycles, then this is the place for you.
To start, I spoke with Noreen and Dennis Sweetwood from Freeport, Ill. about their 1932 Ford Roadster. Noreen mentioned that it took Dennis three years to build this vehicle, as they owned it for three years. It is a two-seater with custom leather seats in black crocodile that has an engraved stamp on it with stainless accents. “The vehicle is made in Detroit and has an all steel metal body and is called the Dearborn Deuce. It has 27 miles on it and has never been driven. It also has a newer Corvette LS motor and 4L60E transmission, says Dennis Sweetwood.
Another fascinating car I found was the 1958 gold and white Chevy Bel-Air built and painted by George Donaldson, the owner who is from Harwood, Md. The car is called “California Dreamin’.” It is a tribute to the California car culture of the 1960’s. George says he bought it in 2016. It has 63,000 or 64,000 miles and he still drives it. “There is some mild customizing and the interior has been redone. The door handles have been removed and replaced with Lincoln Continental push buttons,” says Donaldson.
“There is a custom interior with custom dash knobs from Germany. There is an original 1960’s 45-record player in it,” added Donaldson. This 58 Chevy Belair has a Turbo 35 transmission with an original 283 motor that is cleaned and detailed.
I also came across a 1958 Chevy Unibody Cameo Truck. The engine is a Dixie Dyno 348 Chevy W Motor bored and stroked to 443 cubic inch 560 hp 569 TORQ. It has Hedman Husker custom headers and three-inch stainless exhaust. The paint is PPG Vibrance custom copper and black base clear. The interior seats are SCAT Procar modified, relicate leather.
The special guest at this year’s Autorama is Henry Winkler, better known as “The Fonz”, who was there from 5 – 9 pm. on Friday; 11 a.m.-4 p.m. also 6 p.m.-8 p.m. on Saturday; and 11 a.m.-2 p.m. on Sunday. He will be signing autographs and posing for selfies during his appearance. Also appearing is Dave Kindig from Kindig-It Design on Friday from 6 p.m.-9 p.m. On Saturday, Flavor Flav from Public Enemy will be there.
General Admission is $25.00 and kids 6-12 is $10.00. Children under 5 are free. Hours for Autorama are Friday, February 24 12 p.m.-10 p.m., Saturday February 25 9 a.m.-10 p.m. and Sunday February 26 10 a.m.-7 p.m.
For tickets and more info about Meguiar’s Detroit Autorama, visit: https://autorama.com/attend/detroit/