The Gary Birns Photo Collection

© see info on the photos. (Rik Hoving Kustoms)
Gary Birns Photo Collection
Album was created 7 years 8 months ago and modified 3 years 1 month ago
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  • © see info on the photos. (Rik Hoving Kustoms)
    Gary Birns 1950's-60's PhotoCollection
    Album was created 7 years 8 months ago and modified 1 year ago
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    • 46 files
  • © see info on the photos. (Rik Hoving Kustoms)
    1968 Corvette “Roman Chariot”

    1968 Chevrolet Corvette “Roman Chariot”
    As custom car enthusiasts know, there are fewer a ...more

    nd fewer remaining 1970s top-flight customs cars that have survived the decades. R&H Motorcar Group is very happy to have this custom icon available for purchase.

    460ci big block power
    Dual Holley carburetors
    Muncie 4-speed transmission
    McCreary drag racing tires
    Pearl white & red leather interior
    Sony TV built in dash
    Multiple show winner!
    Includes trailer and set-up display

    WOW! Yes we get head turning cars, but not often like this one!

    Handcrafted in the 1970s by renowned Cleveland, Ohio car builder extraordinaire, the “Roman Chariot” became an obsession for Jerry Roman and his team. Money was not an obstacle in building this car. From 1971-1972 he invested $150,000 in the body, paint, and engine work. The chrome plating alone was over $60,000! More than 10,000 man hours were logged from a crew of 9 employees over a 6 month period. And between 2008-2010 the car received another $25,000 infusion for body work and a new paint job to bring it back to show condition.

    As a result of his investment and hard work, Roman’s Chariot received many awards: Among them was Best Custom Award from Cal Custom at the 21st Annual Autorama in Detroit, and Runner Up for the Ridler Award in 1972. Decades later this car still creates a buzz. In 2012, without any updated modifications, ISCA judges awarded the car Best in Class, Best Handbuilt Custom, and Best Presentation during the Pittsburgh World of Wheels Autorama! During the 2016 Cleveland Autorama, Roman's Chariot was featured in the center main concourse as being one of the top 50 award winning cars from Ohio.

    Starting with that wicked front-end, Jerry wanted the nose extended giving it a much greater pronounced point. The grill openings were exaggerated similar to the headlight louvers which shield the Cibie driving lights. With a nod to past speed demons and future forward thinking, he had a Moon tank protruding out of the body just behind the nose.

    The top was chopped by 7 inches and smoked plexiglass was used for windows to accommodate the crazy new lines created. In all, over 60 custom pieces were bonded together to create the roof which includes side vents behind the windows. Following the radical roof and nose design the door handles were removed and radical side pipe covers were added with matching body paint. To accentuate the wide flares of the Corvette, Jerry REALLY flared them out but to accommodate the huge McCreary drag tires. Custom tail lights rest on each side of a parachute set up because it was the wild 70s and because Jerry wasn’t sure exactly how fast this beast would go! To help keep this car on pavement, a groovy yet stylish wing was bonded to the deck lid.

    Under the hood is a huge 460 cubic inch monster topped with a pair of dual Holley four-barrel carburetors. Built by John Drahos of Corvette Conspiracy, it’s estimated it’ll produce over 500 horses. Though it runs and sounds like a fire breathing beast, it has never been opened or modified since it was built! And speaking of carburetors, the crown resting on top was the design child of a young man named Denny Reardon who later became a design manager for the Ford Motor Company.

    To keep up with the wild horses and exterior, the inside had to show it too and it did, in spades. The door panels and seats were wrapped in custom pearl white hides accented with the same wine color as the body. Plush shag carpet blankets the floor--even the gauge clusters are a matching wine color. The most radical component of the cabin was the addition of a functional Sony 7 inch television. In fact, Speed Racer was recently playing on it!

    As if all the above mentioned creativity wasn’t enough, the thing that truly sets this car apart from the pack is what you couldn’t easily see--the undercarriage. The adage used to be, “out of sight, out of mind.” That held true for custom cars that preceded the Chariot. But Jerry insisted that the frame work, suspension, and drivetrain be completely painted if not chromed! As a result, the underside looks as radical as the topside! He chose a candy pearl copper color for the frame and pearl white for under all body panels making it a strong but radical compliment to the body color.

    And finally, no need to worry about how you’re going to transport this icon. The purchase of this show-winner includes a 24’x7’ tri-axle covered trailer. The carpeted trailer also includes a motorized winch, jack stands, and spare tire. Plus, when you arrive at the car show you can set up the display with the included carpet, mirrors, lights, and small decorative pillars with chains to section off you from the rest of the pack.

    At the Motor Car Group, we're enthusiasts first. We want you to enjoy your new car from the minute it's delivered and the trailer door drops. Before a car leaves our shop, it's gone through comprehensively, both visually and mechanically. We do more than just kick the tires, though: We change every fluid from the oil to the differential to the brake fluid to the convertible top hydraulic oil. We do this after you buy the car so that your “maintenance clock” starts when you get it, and not months prior! We fill your tires with nitrogen, road test (if the weather permits us here in Cleveland!) and clean it inside and out. We buff the paint using a three-step process immediately before it's taken away so that it gleams when it arrives. Every car we sell, from Sunday drivers through the rarest exotics, is meant to be driven--get out there!

    If you have any questions before, during or after the sale, do not hesitate to contact us. It's what we're here for! Call us at (440) 914-0000, write us at or stop by and see the new shop at 6441 Davis Industrial Parkway, Solon OH 44139. We're 26 miles from Cleveland Hopkins Airport and we can pick you up when you come to inspect or purchase your car. We welcome any prospective buyers, their buyer's agents or inspectors from Monday through Friday during business hours, as well as evenings and weekends by appointment. We're car people who love what we do, and you'll feel it from the first time you contact us. Give the R&H crew the opportunity to serve you: Our passion and attention to detail set us apart!

    Call 440-914-0000 or email

    Album was created 3 years ago and modified 3 years ago
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