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Massive steel bodies, incredible engine bays, and unique styles were all part of the auto world in the 1940s. If you had the chance, would you get behind the wheel of an 80-year-old 1940 Ford Fordor? The team at Roadkill Garage found one in decent shape and gave it a lot of TLC to bring it back to life.

Why choose the 1940 Ford Fordor?

1940 Ford Fordor Parked and Posed
1940 Ford Fordor Parked and Posed – Hot Rod Shape With Four Doors | Wikimedia Commons

This old car has the size, shape, and presence of a hot rod, but it’s not your typical choice. Most might look to the 1940 Ford Coupe with only two doors instead of the Fordor, which receives its name from the four doors in place. Most likely, the reason for using this is availability and drivability.

It’s not a junker and drives great

The Roadkill Garage team shows us how well the 80-year-old Ford drives. Powered by a small-block Chevy motor, this car drives great and fires right up. This is significant, considering a car of this age might normally need a lot of work.

Although it starts and drives smoothly and easily, the hot-rod-shaped car has almost no power. The team tried a burnout, and it just doesn’t have the power to get the job done. It’s time for some upgrades that can deliver the desired power.

The 80-year-old Ford receives a new engine and boost parts

Would you add a supercharger to a 1940 Ford Fordor? You might if you want to turn that car into a hot rod. The old Chevy engine has had all it can, and a new engine is required to give this car the oomph we want to see and enjoy. Thankfully, one of the hosts happens to have an available engine.

Once the supercharger, new heads, new cam, and other performance-enhancing parts are installed on this new engine, the Roadkill Garage team takes the car out for a spin. The result of their upgrades is night and day compared to what the car previously offered.

More power and a burnout in a 1940 Ford Fordor

1940 Ford Fordor Boosted by the Roadkill Garage Team - This 80-year-old Ford is a fun hot rod with an engine swap
1940 Ford Fordor Boosted by the Roadkill Garage Team | MotorTrend YouTube Channel

With the new upgrades installed, this hot rod takes to the streets and still does what one of the hosts, David Freiburger, desires; it fires up and runs smoothly. With one goal accomplished, the team shows off some real power, a burnout, and ends with some donuts.

Now that they have this 80-year-old Ford powered right, it’s time to get to work on the rest of the car.

Are you looking for a new car show to watch?

Have you ever heard of Roadkill Garage? If not, it’s a car show by MotorTrend that requires a subscription to enjoy. You can sign up for a seven-day free trial to see if it’s a show you’ll want to watch. The 1940 Ford Fordor engine swap is only part of the third season’s first episode.

Could this inspire you to build a hot rod?

In the shortened video below, the team talks about how easy it is to work on hot rods. Could this be why cars from the 1940s are chosen to be hot rods? The simplicity of a car without advanced electronics and computers could be appealing and might be perfect for your next project.


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