The Thing! 454-Powered VW-Bodied Custom

And now, for something completely different, The Thing! This rolling answer to a question that perhaps never should have been asked combines the body of a Volkswagen Beetle with a 454 V8 (and presumably other parts) from Chevrolet. The result stands unlikely to be confused with any other vehicle… anywhere. The 16 inch wheels suggest a drive-train and perhaps underpinnings of a 3/4 ton GM pickup truck. The hopefully one-off custom comes from Hailey, Idaho, where the winters are long and the beer is cheap. Best of all it’s for sale on Facebook Marketplace, where $3500 makes it yours.

That sure looks like a big block Chevy! Let’s hope there’s a larger radiator for it somewhere, and this box is perhaps a transmission cooler. For extra color and confusion, the listing also shows pictures of an installed small block, purpose unexplained. “Runs good,” according to the seller. Even if the 454 cid (7.4L) V8 comes from the dark days of the mid-’70s to mid-’80s, it will still make enough torque to render this relatively lightweight body entertaining. A thorough inspection of the engineering beneath this beast would be wise as well, to avoid entertainment of an entirely more frightening sort.

Whether the vehicle comes with a floor pan is uncertain from these pictures or the description, but it does come with a new top. Whew! That was probably keeping a number of people from jumping right in with all the money. Should changes to the dashboard become necessary, everything you need can apparently be purchased at your local lumber yard.

From the front, The Thing might be confused with another GM V8-powered open-fendered car, the Allard J2, but only from great distances. Let’s face it; the back is all VW, or at least VW with fenders on steroids. It’s like a VW Beetle after you leave it with car-sitters who let it eat whatever it wants for two months, then you come home and holy smokes, it’s much wider. I keep thinking of those home improvement TV shows where sellers are cautioned against making choices that are too owner-specific. It will take more than a coat of beige paint to normalize this thing, but that’s also what will make it so amazingly perfect for the right buyer. Do you have the chutzpah to hand a valet the keys to this *thing* with confident authority?


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  1. 1961mike Member

    I love it. But I don’t want it. Lol

    Like 8
  2. Bruce71Camino

    What he said. It is horrible, but not as bad as I expected. Would probably be fun to do donuts in. And asking price nearly sane. But no thanks.

    Like 4
  3. DavidH

    “(And presumably others parts) are from Chevrolet.”
    The hubcaps are Chevrolet. I can say that with confidence as long as I focus directly at the hubcaps. If I let my eyes wander even just a little bit I immediately begin to think; what the heck is this thing?!
    To be honest the proportions on this creation actually works for me and I think somebody enjoyed building this to a point anyway. If someone were to take this build to the next level, can you give it a rumble seat?

    Like 7
  4. Terrry

    The straps are there to tie the hood down, since it doesn’t fit. And the tail light “treatment”. I think that’s just the tip of the iceberg. It’s in Idaho, and yes beer is cheap.

    Like 4
  5. lc

    Why the small block is shown is anyone’s guess… It’s a different car all together (unless he’s offering it as a parts car along with it.) Otherwise it looks kinda neat and is dying for the right person to totally divorce itself from it’s humble VW roots.

    Like 2
  6. bobk

    From the front, not half bad – although incomplete. But then, you get around to looking at the rear end…….

    Like 5
  7. ChingaTrailer

    Looks no worse than the old Triumph 1800/2000 roadsters after WWII.

    Like 6
  8. 1st Gear

    Seems to be the underhood pics of the small block is another truck, possibly the truck that was raped for parts to put “Thing” together. Ya gotta give credit where credit’s due, someone tried really hard on this, sorry it seems interest went south.

  9. George Dray Member

    Idaho. Sack of potatoes? Looks about as straight. Kinda interesting in some ways. Not your average kit car. Begs a whole hell of a lot of questions.

  10. Steve Clinton

    The answer to the question nobody asked…unless it’s ‘what’s the ugliest custom-bodied VW ever made?’.

  11. DeeBee

    That looks like the product of beer and, just guessing here, a certain herb. Curious, but, frightening!

    Like 1
  12. douglas hunt

    ah, the perfect car for a post apocalypse scenario, all the seller needs is a cardboard mel gibson, ala mad max

    Like 1
  13. karl

    It looks like this was something Hollywood did to impersonate for a German military car for a cheezy WW2 movie ,and then abandoned .

    Like 1

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