Boss 429 V8: 1970 Ford Torino Holman Moody Project

John Holman & Ralph Moody partnered in the 1950s to create one of the most successful race teams of all time. Responsible for nearly all of Ford’s stock car race victories for two decades, the pair attracted drivers like Jackie Stewart, Bobby Unser, and Parnelli Jones. Cars sporting the hallmarks of Holman Moody construction can sell for hundreds of thousands of dollars. Here on craigslist is a 1970 Ford Torino, reputed to be a factory-built Holman Moody racecar with zero miles since a full restoration in 2001. The car is said to be race-ready. The asking price is $79,000 or best offer and it sits in Chicago, Illinois. Up front, we’ll put this under the category “buyer must research provenance”; in the meantime, we’ll examine what we do know about this example. We have T.J. to thank for this fast tip.

And fast it is, with a rebuilt, “full race” 429 cu. in. V8 flaunting a compression ratio of 13:1 with a four-speed Toploader. These components are said to be original to the car. The seller isn’t supplying a horsepower rating, but a stock Boss 429 was advertised at 375 hp, and that’s likely low for this build. If you want to listen to this beast, I found a video of this very car, posted seven years ago. Buried in this engine bay and environs are an aluminum intake, a “tall” cast iron distributor with Autolite tag, factory aluminum valve covers, and a Holman Moody dry sump system. The car has the necessary fuel cell and – a bonus – body-exit headers. The seller claims this car raced USAC circuits. United States Auto Club is a stock car racing organization that for many years sanctioned the Indy 500, attracting participation from the Who’s Who of race teams in the day. It would be great to see a log book or vintage photos of this car actually racing, but alas, none such is forthcoming in the listing.

The upside-down gauge cluster is said to be original. Just my opinion, but the interior doesn’t look like the condition of the 2001 restoration was preserved. The seller indicates the car’s roll cage and chassis are original Holman Moody items. Holman Moody assigned all of its cars a serial number, so checking the chassis may be possible; alternatively, perhaps Marti or Holman Moody itself has records that can authenticate the car.

The car is equipped with a Frankland quick-change rear end as well as adjustable suspension. The trunk lid has the casual fit I associate with Fords of this era. It is a race car, so I’m not going to be too critical of the rest of the body gaps, but the restoration quality is a question mark for me, along with the provenance. As noted, real Holman Moody cars are expensive; this one sold for $187k. What do you think about this example?


  1. angliagt angliagt

    Vinyl (tape) wrapped steering wheel – Ah,the good old days.
    I’d want documentation that it truly was an H&M car.And how
    much work (& money) would it be to get it back on the track?
    And would it be eligible to run anywhere?
    Holman & Moody has some fascinating history.I spent
    (at least) one evening looking up & reading different stories
    on them.I was gladly surprised that there were a lot of Cortinas
    there,some damaged.I’m thinking that Ford gave them a lot
    of freight damaged ones.
    They had all kinds of cool stuff in their buildings,and
    did a few auctions,the last one in 1982.

    Like 10
    • mike

      The Cortina’s were dropped during off loading.I bought a few items from them.Hoping this car is the real thing.

      Like 4
      • Eric Lloyd

        Actually a deck on the ship collapsed and damaged the cars on the lower level. They were unloaded in Saint John N.B. Canada and shipped from there.

        Like 3
  2. Craig Walker

    Caveat emptor !

    Like 4
  3. Cowboy

    The quick-change rear end definitely isn’t H/M, and to go missing the 9″ Ford pumpkin definitely doesn’t qualify as a restoration. Now, if we could just see the Holman Moody VIN tag…

    Like 7
    • Rallye Member

      I remember Lee Holman telling of someone that thought they bought a H/M car because it had a brass H/M tag on it. It was likely a Holman Moody inventory tag from a filing cabinet or ? that was sold at the big auction.

      Like 5
      • Cowboy

        Sorry, I forgot my sarcasm font on the last remark. ;)

        It’s been said that Lee Holman has been quite willing to sell those DIY VIN tags.

        Like 1
  4. grant

    0 miles in 20 years means it probably doesn’t run. 80k for a cool paperweight of questionable provenance.

    Like 3
  5. JAC

    That car is not a Holman Moody Torino. It clearly started life as an early 1960s Galaxie and is built over what is called a “cow belly” full frame. If you look closely, you can see that frame and early Galaxie suspension in the images.It does have some H&M parts. But that does not make it anything other than someone’s home built amalgamation of random parts.

    Like 9
    • Cowboy

      I was hoping you’d chime in! Hope all is good!


      Like 0
  6. DW

    NOT a 1970 unit body based Holman Moody Torino. This car started out as an early 60s Galaxie. Check out the full Galaxie frame. Who knows what it really was? But it for sure is not what it is being advertised to be.

    Like 2
  7. Jonny

    The writer obviously doesn’t know much about the history of Holman and Moody. Their most famous drivers were race winner Fireball Roberts, Daytona 500 winners Fred Lorenzen & Mario Andretti, and 2 time NASCAR champion for them David Pearson, as well as Parnelli, who won the Riverside 500 in an H&M car. I don’t believe Uncle Bobby or Jackie ran more than 1 or 2 races for H&M.

    Like 1
    • B302

      Agree about the writer, David Pearson should always be mentioned in a write up about Holman-Moody. He won two NASCAR CHAMPIONSHIPS driving for them. He also won a NASCAR Championship driving a Dodge. Pearson is second in all time NASCAR Cup wins at 105, even though a lot of years in his career he did not run a full schedule.

      Like 0
  8. MisterBlue

    NOW yer talkin’. That car’s worth every penny.

    Like 0
  9. JD Scott

    Yes, I question the provenance on this one. Why would one put such a storied car on Craigslist?

    Like 2
    • Rallye Member

      I would! My story would, however, be factual.
      I’ve abandoned Ebay for the most part due to rising fees, having been ripped off as a seller and a buyer. I don’t do facebook.
      You can advertise in different areas on Craigslist. Even with just local posting in WI, I’ve had replies and made sales to CA and WA.

      Is there a way to advertise internationally on Craigs for some of my ultra rare high $ stuff? (now 29). If I don’t get to it, my grandson will. He’s been learning the business, the shop and the race team since he was 4 (now 29).

      Like 1
    • Bill McCoskey Bill McCoskey Member


      “Why would one put such a storied car on Craigslist?”

      1. Because it’s free and as Rallye said, there are no selling commissions.
      2. To test the waters, to see what others have to say, and will it “pass muster”?
      3. Internet websites like feeBay are buyer friendly, and if a buyer claims it’s not as advertised, they get $ back or the deal is cancelled. With Craigslist, they offer nothing in the way of protection.
      4. None of the big specialty car auction companies will take a vehicle like this on consignment without full [and verfiable] documentation. This car appears not to have that level of documentation.
      5. And finally, because there’s always a chance a buyer with too much money and little experience, who is willing to take a chance, in the hopes they can find [or create] the needed documentation.

      Like 3
  10. Piper62j

    If you believe this car is a factory built H/M, then you must find a psychiatrist that will REALLY help you. Just sayin!!

    Like 1
    • Cowboy

      Probably going a little overboard on the psychiatrist, but definitely an optometrist!

      Like 1
  11. chrlsful

    look component by component like any other purchase. Then decide. I’ve made purchases from sellers who knew less abt what they had than me.

    Like 0
    • Rallye Member

      The good old days….buying a car really cheap that needs points …from someone that had the radio and ignition on all weekend. “It was running good last week.”

      Like 0
  12. Gary

    Looks like a Rust-Oleum restoration to me. Very poor quality for 80 large. Most likely someone’s homegrown short tracker that had a local legend grown up around it that was taken as gospel. Check it very carefully.

    Like 0

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