Cars from the Ron Pratte Collection
Editor’s note: This is the 14th in a 30-day series featuring cars from the Ron Pratte Collection that will be sold at Barrett-Jackson’s Scottsdale auction in January.
1936 Delahaye ’Whatthehaye’ street rod
The 1936 Delahaye “Whatthehaye” Street Rod is certainly one of the most striking automobiles on earth. It is a one-of-a-kind vehicle from the mind and imagination of the late Boyd Coddington and represents a tip of the hat to the mind and imagination of Emile Delahaye.
In 1894, Delahaye formed his own car company. Judging by the machines he was responsible for creating, he must have seen the future. His cars may well have been the very first to look like they were moving fast even when parked at the curb.
Coddington’s effort is the result of 79 years of hindsight to improve upon an original design that was already fantastic. In doing so, he added almost eight decades of technology.
A completely new chassis supports this car and provides a modern suspension for maximum comfort and performance. The Marcel Delay metal work is breathtaking. A Dodge Viper V10 engine and its corresponding 6-speed manual transmission look and feel like it was Emile himself who wanted them there.
The 1936 Delahaye “Whatthehaye” Street Rod (Lot #2515) is scheduled to cross the auction block in Scottsdale on Saturday, January 17.
1957 Chevrolet Bel Air ‘Chezoom’ custom
Also built by Body Coddington, “Chezoom” (Lot #2514) is the most recognized and famous ’57 Chevy worldwide and is possibly one of Coddington’s most famous creations.
The car was drawn by noted car artist Thom Taylor as an exercise of design possibilities. Fortunately for all of us, speed equipment tycoon Joe Hrudka was visiting Coddington’s shop when Taylor unveiled his sketch. Hrudka said he wanted it and thus car-customizing history began its giant leap forward.
A special chassis was developed just for this car since the original one would have placed the occupants too high inside to cope with the ultra-low roof line. The finished product is said to have retained only 10 percent of its original sheet metal.
A C4 Chevrolet Corvette suspension system and brakes are used. A GM LTI small block with a proper 700-R4 overdrive transmission moves this cruiser along with dead-on dependability.
In 2004, this masterpiece was upgraded again in numerous ways including a comprehensive redesign of its interior. Air conditioning, a new sound system and an XM satellite connection gives it a real touch of space age influence.
The car also has a custom steering wheel machined to match the four-of-a-kind Boyd wheels at each corner.
The 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air “Chezoom” Custom (Lot #2514) is scheduled to cross the auction block in Scottsdale on Saturday, January 17.
The Ron Pratte Collection will begin being auctioned with automobilia from Saturday, January 10 at 9 a.m. (MST) through Tuesday, January 13 at 1 p.m. Pratte’s vehicles first cross the block at 4 p.m. on Tuesday with lot numbers 2000 through 2109 and continue with lot numbers 2500 through 2530 Saturday, January 17.