Bobby Allison Racer! Vintage Clone With Story

The story behind this vintage racing clone car is almost as interesting as the car itself. Apparently a young lady of 11 years old won this car in 2010 and put it away in the hopes of racing it someday. Now she is graduating and is selling the car to purchase transportation to go to college with. Her grandfather has put the car up for sale for her here on craigslist in San Bernardino, California. They are asking $12,000.

Now as to what exactly this car is took a little detective work. I can tell you what it isn’t: the car is incorrectly listed as a 1969 Mercury Montego. It’s actually a 1973-1975 Ford Torino, and based on the shape of the rear bumper I think it’s a 1973 coupe. It’s painted close to, but not exactly, in the paint scheme that Allison drove in NASCAR from 1969 through 1974, but as far as I can tell, he drove only Mercury, Chevrolet and Dodge products during that period (feel free to correct me, NASCAR fans). So this is a clone of a car that never existed!

Here’s a picture of a stock 1973 Gran Torino Sport so you can see if you think I’m right. Ironically, there were 1973-1975 Torinos used in NASCAR, but most were the fastback series, not the coupe. I did find one coupe that was raced by Bill Elliott towards the beginning of his career.

I have very fond memories of meeting famous NASCAR racer Bobby Allison when I was a child. To make a long story short, Allison was scheduled to make an appearance in Winston-Salem, North Carolina for the oil company that was sponsoring him that year, and his plane was delayed. Most of the fans had left when he showed up three hours late, and by that point it was 9:00 PM and I’m sure he would have rather gone straight to his hotel room. Nevertheless, he went to the event and stayed there for over an hour even though he was tired, patiently answering many questions from a particular 12 year old who was fascinated with everything to do with racing. Nothing would do but for him to move the ropes out of the way and get me into the driver’s seat of his race car. I’m not sure whose smile was the biggest–mine, his, or my parents. Needless to say, we were Bobby Allison fans from that point on!

I know, Jamie, hush about your memories and back to the car. The young lady states that she wanted to race the car when she grew up, and it does appear that the car was at least partially equipped for the job. This fuel cell installation looks top-notch.

Some preparation has gone on under the hood as well, although obviously we have no idea as to the build state of the engine. I hope it has been at least occasionally exercised since 2010! I’m guessing it was built to a mild state of tune, which would be just right for some fun vintage racing action with the right sanctioning group.

I was also impressed with the interior preparation of the car, although I’d love to know the reason behind the automatic transmission. That’s one of the things that didn’t make sense to me. I’m sure there’s a good story behind it.

As you can see from this picture showing Bobby Allison and the young lady, presumably on the day she won the car in the background, there is certainly some documentation to the truth of the story. I’d love to know more! Apart from putting a manual transmission in the car, I think this would be perfect for vintage racing with the right sanctioning body that would allow a non-original car. Do you agree with me? Any other Allison fans out there with stories to tell?


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  1. Troy Hotton

    Bobby raced both older and new versions of this Torino (’74 I believe is the one pictured), he raced a ’71 Torino for Holman Moody (in similar livery as the car pictured) and a ’75 or ’75 version for Bud Moore with the 15 Norris indusrties livery. He ran the Torino on short tracks for Bud and the T bird on the speedways. I believe Bobby had a win at Nashville in the Torino for Bud and at Bristol in a Torino for Holman and Moody. It’s a cool looking car, nice to see people appreciate old racing.

    • TriPowerVette

      +Troy Hotton – About 1974 on back is the only NASCAR ‘Competition’ that is worthy of being called that. This was the Golden Age of NASCAR. The Allison Brothers, King Richard, Cale Yarborough, Charlie Glotzback, Wendell Scott and many others were the real deal. They drove cars powered by 427’s, 454’s, Boss 429’s and the earth-shattering 426 Hemi. Gosh, I miss real racing.

      +Jamie Palmer – You are absolutely on mark.

      • scottymac

        Please check your facts on that 454. Pretty sure they never ran Grand National or Winston Cup. Don’t forget Lee Roy Yarbrough, he had quite a streak in ’69, IIRC. Petty in a Talladega was a Ford lover’s dream.

      • TriPowerVette

        +scottymac – Please forgive the simple typo. I bow to your superior proofreading. Who indeed could forget Mr. Yarbrough?

        You get a well-deserved thumbs up.

      • SC/RAMBLER

        YOU SAID A MOUTHFUL there. NASCAR is not what it was and should be. No such thing as inovation any more.

      • Brian Cody

        I reside in Danville, Va home of Wendell Scott and it was the Best of times then to be a Nascar fan. The Martinsville track is 30 minutes up the road and getting to meet the racers was so much fun.

      • TriPowerVette

        I remember when you could go into a car dealership, buy say, a Hemi Daytona, take it home and knock yourself out gutting, stripping and prepping it, and expect to qualify somewhere in the mid-back of the pack. You wouldn’t expect to be particularly competitive, but you would belong there.

        Today; you need a spec (kit) built car, a seasoned crew, enough spares to build 2 more cars, etc… and you still might not qualify (even though a race hasn’t started with 43 cars within recent memory). (I know one of you will tell me that the new field limit is 39 cars – or some such – but I just don’t care.)

        The same used to go for Trans-Am and NHRA/AHRA.

        If you could see a race today, which featured virtually bone-stock Dodge Hellcats, Camaro ZL-1s, and Mustang Shelby 500s, I bet the crowd would go nuts! It would breathe life into a moribund sport.

    • Beaver Prince

      I think you are right I have one of the girls at the company I work for digging as we speak and am getting ready to taxi out and will see this car this afternoon!

  2. Steve R

    She’s very smart, not many people can graduate from college with two degrees at age 19.

    I’m a Bobby Allison fan too, he seems like a good man. I would buy Main and Tail shampoo when they sponsored his car.

    Steve R

  3. Andrew not amember

    Great heart warming story about meeting him !

  4. Mr. TKD

    When I saw the headline in my notifications, I just knew the car would be a Matador. Darn.

    I hope the young lady gets her price.

  5. Jake

    Great story(s)…hers and yours Jamie!!! Be interesting to find out the folks story that built the car. Probably (after a complete checkout) be a great ride for a track day event and a cool car to take to shows!

  6. Nrg8

    Youtube – search cargirl1, walk around and starting up video. Sounds nice. And youtube again swinging little car girl and the young miss does a nice burn out in it and does a poem she wrote about it. Suprised to see stock manifolds on it though.

  7. Dick Johnson

    Bobby was still flying his Aerostar back then. Sometimes he’d land on a race track and taxi to his garage.

    All of those racers back then were the real deal of the time; “race on Sunday, sell on Monday” for car manufacturers.

    Safety has taken the forefront in racing, gratefully, but the sounds and sights of full-bore big-bore racing is just tire smoke into the winds of time..

    Selling this car makes this young lady and her grandfather winners for a second time with this car.

  8. Paul Hudson

    Definitely a 73′. I had one myself as my first car. Federal 5 MPH front only that year.

  9. Beaver Prince

    we have phoned this nice lady and will leave for Cal in about one HR I hope the car is as much fun as it looks I will post the photos and story IF we make a deal $12000 is Way out of line but $7000-$8000 is in my pocket!

  10. Beaver Prince

    UPDATE after having a person that knows HER cars do a quick search we found that BOBBY Drove every thing listed and Datsun’s to Buick’s and yes some Ford’s but could not find a Coupe bodied car other than the Datsun and Buick! We could be wrong but this what we could find in a quick search! Beaver PS we will be in the air soon we found a fuel leak and had to repair it before we could take off.BP

    • Steve R

      I think you are right. The ads specifically says it’s never been raced. At best, it was a “show car”, used by a team for promotions. Without documentation it’s a novelty that may not even be allowed to run in many nostalgic races.

      Steve R

      • Beaver Prince

        Don’t ask I am flying back to Utah with $$ in my packet and NO car!! It is a pretty car BUT nothing I would buy!! Sorry It is not my first RODEO !!

  11. sir mike

    Put lights back in and drive this to school….

  12. Dan D

    Would rather have this….

    • Melvin Burwell

      Yes there it is. The red tomato 74. My personal favorite body style.

  13. Jaybird

    Straight up purpose built show car. Appears to have stock suspension, wrong fuel cell, wrong transmission, questionable rollcage and street wheels. Doubt it has seen a track unless it was in the parking lot.

  14. sluggo

    Cant say on the price, and the car sure does look like a show car for appearances,, B&M shifter with auto trans, and the stock distributor and stock type coil with no vacuum line going to the advance (Even in the early 70s doubt any serious racer ran points). But it does have a lot of stainless bling and Moroso parts.. Personally I think it would be a blast to put some lights on it and take it to car shows. Cool car and cool story,,but for a novelty car is probably overpriced but cant hurt to try,, it DOES say offers. Would like to know more about the FPI the Beaver prince saw and details.

  15. Ponyman1

    Dan D…..I agree 100 percent.

  16. michael h streuly

    I like the part how she says the car was built to race ready standards. It almost sounds like she wants you to believe that the car has a racing history. I say 5 grand.

  17. Rick Byrne

    This is not a show car. Nothing about it even passes for a reasonable facsimile of anything NASCAR. It is clearly a home-built (very nicely done) street stocker, meant to be raced on a local bullring, pavement I’m guessing (not dirt), though obviously that never happened. Depending on the rules at your local track, you could be racing it next season as it sits. I’ll add that the price is about 35% too high for what it is — a turn-key, local, street stocker.

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