”We have taken her out on a few tours and shows including to the Flatlands Motorama in the Netherlands. She loves munching up the miles!
After the successes of the pre-war designed 1940s Sedans, Coupes, Fleetlines, and Aerosedans, Chevrolet overhauled its line-up in 1949 to bring a new generation of models into the next decade. As predecessors to the Bel Air range, a new upper end collection of Deluxe models was introduced with the Styleline being a popular choice for many vehicle owners of the time. Comfort, convenience, and style had become important considerations for drivers and the Chevrolet Deluxe Styleline offered just that. Over 70 years later, the Chevy Styleline still has as much style and sophistication as it did when it rolled off the production line all those years ago.
Let us introduce you to Pete Horne, winner of the ClassicLine trophy pick at the NSRA Fun Run back in June 2022. Pete’s stunning 1950 Chevy Styleline really stands out on the showfield for its incredible Root Beer paintwork and that oh-so-right stance.
Pete is from Bedfordshire and is only a stone’s throw away from the venue that plays host to the NSRA Hot Rod Supernationals. The annual mecca for pre-1972 hot rod and custom car owners far and wide, and it was this very show that kick started his passion for hotrodding.
As those of us who are old enough to remember will know, the NSRA’s Hot Rod Supernationals was originally held at Knebworth Park before moving to its current location of Old Warden Park. So, it was back in 1992 and only a year after the show’s inception, that Pete would stare and marvel at all of the amazing cars. Taken along to the shows by his dad, then latterly driving there with his friends after passing his driving test, Pete dreamed that one day he would be part of it.
Roll forward 30 years and Pete is lucky enough to own quite a collection of modified and rodded cars. “I also own a 1988 Mazda Minitruck which I have had for years. It has undergone a V8 engine swap, air ride, and a body drop but it is still a long way off from being finished! I have also owned a 1995 GMC Day Van, which was great fun, and then a 1952 Chevy Bel Air hardtop which started the 50s Chevy addiction,” says Pete.
The car was originally imported into the UK from Tennessee and Pete tells us that he brought it from a lovely chap in Scotland, hence why he named her Bonnie. Having owned the ‘50 Chevy Styleline for around four years now, the car is now very much part of the family, and he certainly doesn’t have any plans to move it on for a long time yet.
Before the car made its way to the UK, it already had some light modifications, a V8 engine swap plus a little pinstripping from custom car builder, Voodoo Larry. Pete says, “between the car arriving in Edinburgh and me buying her, Bonnie went through a four-year total rebuild at RM Restoration in Edinburgh. When I brought the car, it was pretty much finished but still needed a few bits and pieces sorting.”
After the drive down from Edinburgh, Pete got straight to work remodelling the brake set up, inner wheel arches, lights and switches, engine cover, plus several other areas that he thought needed attention.
Bonnie now sits on a complete air ride system, and has a custom frame set up running the drive train from a 1999 Camaro Z28. The car is now powered by an LS1 5.7 engine, has narrowed Mustang II front clip, disc brakes all round, and sits pretty on 20″ Detroit Steels. The icing on this stylish cake is the ‘Root Beer’ custom paint which is complimented by the bespoke interior by Custom Coach Trimming.
“She has a nice collection of awards and one of them is for the amazing interior! We have taken her out on a few tours and shows before lockdown including to the Flatlands Motorama in the Netherlands. She loves munching up the miles!”, Pete tells us. Now things are getting back to normal, there is a full show season schedule to look forward to, including the NSRA Hot Rod Supernationals in just a few days’ time.
Pete has also been a member of the A602s for 12 years and loves being part of the club. The A602s annual car show is taking place on Sunday 11th August 2022 in Stevenage and is well worth a visit if you have not attended before.
Thanks very much Pete for taking the time to talk to us. We’ll see you at the Hot Rod Supernationals!
For specialist insurance cover for your American vehicle or custom car, call the ClassicLine team on 01455 639 000 or visit the contact us page.