The tenth annual party on Main Street has come and gone, and the streets were once again flooded with Factory Five customs. This annual event, a way to bring things back and remember where they started, is a Factory Five favorite that draws in people from all over the country, not just the surrounding counties of Huntington Beach, California.
Trail leader Dave Smith, President and Founder of Factory Five, hitched up the wagons and headed West for the event, bringing employees and special vehicles to show to the local crowd and the participants, which he adamantly calls ‘family’ at every opportunity.
Our reputation rides shotgun with every customer build – that drives everything we do. -Dave Smith, Factory Five
The company has also made some changes to its chassis lately, to make them stronger and better. Smith said he knows that people are driving these cars, and even taking them to open track days. “We only shine bright when our customers succeed and build great cars. We shine bright when our customers win races. We shine bright when our customer-built cars earn car show awards and magazine press. We shine when our customers complete a cross-country trip that few other replicas could accomplish. We only win when our customers win,” he said. “How’s that for pressure? Talk about the importance of customer service. We live or die based on what happens long after the sale!”
The Huntington Beach show has been going on for ten years, and every year we see some similar cars, and some new cars, as well as some new builds starting. But one thing doesn’t change: the venue is packed with people and Factory Five cars.
Cars come from long distances, and many of them are driven in. We’ve picked our favorites every year because we’re able to find new cars that we either haven’t seen, or we simply didn’t get a chance to appreciate the year before. After all, it’s over 100 cars that we look at, and even with the limited number of models available, they’re all different in one way or another.
Again this year, we’re picking our favorites from the show, and we’re going to start with a couple of cars that were actually the highlight of the show. They were special builds, and both were cars we want to drive.
Favorite Type 65 Coupe
The Type 65 Coupe resembles the infamous Shelby Daytona Coupe, of which only six were ever made. But you can get your own for far less than the millions that the Shelby’s will fetch, and for this year the Type 65 has an all-new chassis.
Introduced at SEMA 2016, this new chassis incorporates a square tube frame with better support for strength and torsional rigidity. When we came upon this Joey Logano racecar, we were hooked, and as unfair as it might be to all of the other great Type 65 Coupes we saw, this one was just too badass to pass up.
You can find plenty more in our gallery at the bottom, but for now, just take a gander at this beast. Getting in and out of it is a real chore, imagine Logano climbing in and out with his 6-foot frame.
What better way to showcase the new 800 horsepower Edelbrock Coyote crate motor, complete with the eForce supercharger, than to stab it into a Factory Five Mk4 roadster? Finished in that classic Edelbrock red paint, the blown Coyote fit nicely under the hood, and from all accounts the car is ridiculously fast and insane to drive.
Imagine that: 800 horsepower in a car that weighs just a tad over 2,000 pounds? The car was built for Edelbrock, of course, and was delivered to them the next weekend at the annual Edelbrock car show. Keep an eye out for that article coming up.
Favorite ’33 Hot Rod
There are always plenty of ’33 Hot Rods at the Huntington Beach Cruise in with Factory Five. While we’ve seen some that were over the top, some that were under the wire, and others that broke the mold, this entry from Rick Walton from Crescenta, California, is one that we’ve had our eyes on for a couple years now.
The car is very clean, and it’s different. We love the details and especially the mesh on the side panels that allow you to get a glimpse of the LS engine. Inside, a set of Auto Meter gauges tell the tale of under the hood readings, and outside a set of Billet Specialties wheels keep it looking killer.
The 818 is Factory Five’s small car, and while we have seen some early versions of this car with electric power, they’re really set up to run the Subaru Boxer engine. Ray Pasquetti, from Roseville, California, received his 818R in May of 2014 and brought it out to show it off this year. It definitely looks like a lot of fun to race around in.
The GTM is the car that strayed off the path of Ford, for Factory Five. It’s a kit that utilizes Corvette hardware into a supercar-like package that looks like it belongs on the track instead of the street. This has always been one of our favorite Factory Five cars, and Thomas “Wayne” Mills of Courtland, California, brought his LS7-powered GTM out to the show on Main Street.
Favorite Under Construction
Building a Factory Five kit car has always been a special treat for a gearhead. But when that gearhead is just starting to bud, and his father decides to build the car together – father and son – then it’s even better.
Roman Biller has been to the show here at Huntington Beach before, and having worked mostly on building bikes, he decided that it was time he bought a car from Factory Five and got to working on it with his son, Vincent. They brought out their “Build in Progress” ’33 Hot Rod, and showed off their progress to the non-stop crowd that we found around the car all day.
Asked what do they like most about the car? They both agreed it was the engine. That’s bringing him up the right way, and we’re just a little envious of Vincent getting this life lesson in a full size model kit to share with his dad.
What’s Under The Cover?
This year we were treated to a cutaway of a Factory Five Racing Mk4 kit. The body was split down the middle, and shows how the chassis, wiring, and plumbing is all stuffed up underneath the fiberglass.
It truly shows that this is more than just a simple kit, with a lot of wiring and plenty of reinforcement on the chassis. And if you’re wondering, yes – this car actually drives, that’s how they get it from the trailer to the street.
Below is a small gallery of the sights from the 10th Annual Huntington Beach Cruise In for Factory Five. If you’re in the area, they do this here every year and you don’t want to miss it.