Greg Wapling

PANIC | FAQ | Help
Chev 34 | 51 Pickup | Business Directory | Photo Gallery | Readers Rides | Under Construction | Virtual Body Shop
General | Documentaries | Events | How-to
Artists By Name | Artists by Genre | Music Links
American Chopper | American Hot Rod | Horsepower TV | Hot Rod TV | Monster Garage | Overhaulin | Rides | Wheels TV | Wrecks to Riches
Queensland | New South Wales | Victoria | Tasmania | South Australia | Northern Territory | Western Australia | New Zealand
Let's Go Cruisin | Dry Lakes Racers Australia | Hot Rod Internet | OzRodders | HAMB | Rodders Roundtable | Land Racing
subglobal8 link | subglobal8 link | subglobal8 link | subglobal8 link | subglobal8 link | subglobal8 link | subglobal8 link

Hot Rod History

Hot Rod Magazine




Autorama is a large showcase of custom-built cars held each year at Cobo Hall in Detroit, Michigan. It is put on by the Michigan Hot Rod Association and is held every year in March. As of 2006, the show has been in existence for 54 years.

The Detroit Autorama started off as a hot rod show that would raise enough funds to build a drag strip for the MHRA. The first Autorama was held at the University of Detroit Field House in January 1953. Around 1,500 people attended the inaugural event.

In 1954, the MHRA decided it needed a larger space to hold the show in, so they chose to hold the show at the Michigan State Fairgrounds. In 1955, the show moved again to the Detroit Artillery Armory, before moving back to the Fairgrounds in 1956. The first Autorama to be held at Cobo Hall was in 1961.

In 1957, the MHRA hired Don Ridler as promotions agent and publicist for the show. Ridler booked bands that were popular at the time to play at Autorama. Popular acts like Duane Eddy and The Big Bopper helped gain attendance at the show. Ridler died an untimely death in 1963. The Ridler Award was established in 1964 in his honor.

Autorama continued to expand throughout the late 60's and early 70's. In the 70's, Autorama was the highest paying car show in the country, with $500 and the trophy going to the Ridler winners. Autorama was the place to be in the 70's featuring not only the feature cars such as the Monkeemobile and creations from Ed Roth and George Barris, but also bands, television personalities, and Playboy Playmates.

Some of the bands to play Autorama include Bobby Rydell, Bo Diddley, Brownsville Station, Mitch Ryder, The Turtles, Chubby Checker, The Big Bopper, Alice Cooper, and The Amboy Dukes with Ted Nugent.

Some of the featured celebrities to appear at Autorama are Mark Hamill, Mark Paul Gosselaar, Leonard Nemoy, Robo Cop, Mario Lopez, Antonio Sabato, Jr., Adam West and Burt Ward, John Stamos, William Shatner, Mini Me, radio and television personalities Wolfman Jack and Count Scary, wrestlers Lou Albano, King Kong Bundy, Sgt. Slaughter, Tito Santana and Sable. Racing personalities like Bobby Allison, Richard Petty, Don Garlits, John Force, and Tony Pedregon have also appeared at Autorama. Members of the Detroit Tigers and Detroit Red Wings have also appeared at the show.

Featured cars include most forms of the Batmobile, the Monkeemobile, Greased Lightning, General Lee, the Red Baron, ZZ Top's Eliminator, the A-Team van, the Munster Koach, the Hot Wheels Twin Mill, and more recently, Lightning McQueen and Mater from the movie Cars.

About Us | Site Map | Privacy Policy | Disclaimer | Contact Us | © 1995 - 2009 Greg Wapling All Rights Reserved