All of us have life goals, some more ambitious than others. While we try to achieve the little ones and slowly chip away at them, most of us, if not all, have the notion of a comfortable retirement as one of our biggest goals. We put in the long hours, and expect to reap the rewards. Willie Boylan is one such Oupa. Years of hard work and dedication enabled him not just a comfortable retirement, but the ability of fulfilling his lifelong dream of owning a hotrod.
I first experienced Witrod at the Speed and Sound MotorEx back in 2016, which now seems like a lifetime ago. I had the honour of getting extremely up close and personal with the very unique ride, and awarded it first place in the Old American category.
Oom Willie comes from an automotive-crazy family, and regular readers will identify “Boylan” as a household name, Quentin being the more well-known of the trio. So if your passion is cars, racing and everything automotive, and you get it from your dad, surely your old man knows a thing or three about building insane rides.
Reality TV and the Discovery Channel has somewhat educated us with the American hotrod culture, and you know when you hear the words “Three Window Coupe”, you must sit up and pay attention. Willie searched high and low for an original 3-window steel body, but alas, he had to settle for a fibreglass version from Streetrod Factory in Centurion. They supplied the chassis as well, and the three and a half year project of blood, sweat and tears got underway.
If you’re into streetrods, you’d know that Jaguar suspensions are best suited to these builds, even more so than to actual Jaguars. The front Jag suspension was completely refurbished, and includes the complete braking system as well.
At the rear, Witrod received the same treatment, and not just does it help with the stance of the classic, it makes it a fully functional ride as well. The body was prepped and painted by Michael Nothnagel and even though it seems like a simple paintjob, lots of manhours have gone into it. I must be honest, initially I had no idea it was a glass body, which is particularly difficult to get perfect, and believe me, this car is perfect. As I’ve mentioned earlier, I was privileged to judge it, so I went over it with a fine comb and a very critical eye. The paintwork is undeniably the best I’ve seen, ever. And I’ve seen many. Traditionally, streetrods aren’t painted white, but the Pearl White gives it a rich, luxurious sophistication, combining different cultures into one.
Rolling stock are classic American Racing alloys in a fitment of 18” x 8J wrapped in 235 rubber at the front, while from below the rear arches peek the mammoth 315/30R20 Pace Azura rubber. We don’t see cars with different sized wheels in this magazine often, hopefully this is the first of many.
The original flathead V8, although iconic, would seem a bit dated in a build like this. In fact, even a Cleveland or Windsor Ford motor would not do the car justice. Personally, I would have loved to see a Ford Coyote crate motor, but the sidehood reveals the cleanest 5.7-litre Chevrolet LS1 8-pot you will ever see. It was masterfully shoehorned into the Coupe and although stock for the most part, a 100mm throttle body was added, as well as a custom air filtration system to suit the car. The custom headers are ceramic coated, and the dual stainless exhaust system was fabricated by CME Engineering. The OEM fuel injection system is in place, although an uprated high-pressure Bosch pump was added.
Open the suicide doors, and…er…you know, there are times when one cannot put emotions into words. The custom interior and custom-built seats were designed and created by, in my view, the best in the business, Autosound Gezina in Pretoria. A combination of blues and subtle greys contrasts the exterior, yet it still maintains a high level of flowing opulence. Although it appears period-correct, there are a few very modern touches inside the cabin. A Dakota Digital dash provides all the feedback needed, an Ididit steering and column is fitted, along with the futuristic-looking electronic push button shifter from P.C.S. and both windows are even electrically operated.
Oom Willie also happens to have the coolest huis by die see, and his man cave is every petrolhead’s dream. It is where Witrod spends its days, so if you’re ever on the Garden Route, look out for this coolest Oupa with the coolest whip. He reckons none of this would have been possible if it weren’t for his family, Quentin and Matthew, and his “other”son, Hercules Van Wyk. He also would like to give special thanks to Chris Muller Engineering, Michael for the paintwork, and Abdul from ASG.
If this is what retirement and being a pensioner is all about, then bring on the years!