While rooted in hot rods, as made evident last week with the reveal of the ’34 Ford, the guys at Gas Monkey Garage are no strangers to some out there builds. Especially of the racecar variety as we saw last season and while the results in the past may have not been what they were hoping for, the build certainly was. This year NASCAR’s Kurt Busch comes by the garage to offer the crew another shot at a racecar and another shot at victory.
Stopping by via helicopter while in town for a race at Texas Motor Speedway Kurt takes a tour of the shop and while checking out the previous Pantera the guys got he confesses his love for the iconic car. Not wanting to miss on an opportunity to build Kurt a 200mph Pantera, Richard flies out to the NASCAR capital, Mooresville N.C., to close the deal with at Kurt’s shop. Agreeing to $200,000, Kurt’s team and resources and about six weeks till race week, the hunt is on for the perfect Pantera…A task easier said than done.
Richard tasks Tony Taylor and Christie Brimberry with finding the perfect 1972, and only ’72, for them too begin the build. No easy task when there were only 7,000 produced. Fortunately, Dennis Collins is sitting on a ’72 Pantera, but with the possibility of selling it at Pebble Beach in the near future it wouldn’t come cheap to Richard and Kurt. In fact, it would cost them a cool $125,000 putting them over budget from the get go.
With no time to waste the guys immediately get the car inside where a plan is worked out. Carbon fiber hood and deck lid, Coyote motor, flared wheel well with wider tires, MOMO racing seats, Brembo brakes and a full racing roll cage. The latter of which the guys got some outside help on to make sure everything was on the up and up. In order to help the guys out KBI seats a couple employees to help wrap up the roll cage and assist with getting the motor properly into place.
Needing to get the car off to Kurt’s shop with just around four weeks left in the build, Mike Coy gets thrown a curveball; Kurt wants to add additional painted graphics giving the Pantera a classic Ford livery feel. Pressed for time, per usual, Mike and the team way the options before leaning toward vinyl wrap for the extra touches.
Next week the crew heads east to KBI to finish up the build to take on fellow NASCAR driver Joey Logano, all with the added pressure of cash now bing on the line. And while the Monkeys are out east, Richard and Dennis head west to Pebble Beach to sell Ghia number one.