Grand National Roadster Show 2017

January, 2017

The longest running indoor car in the world, the Grand National Roadster Show (GNRS), is now in its 68th year. Held at the Fairplex in Ponoma, CA, this three-day event showcased more than 650 automobiles indoors and 1000 outdoors. Of the several awards that were presented, there’s one that is coveted by everyone in the hot rod industry – America’s Most Beautiful Roadster (AMBR). You might say it’s the Holy Grail of hot rods, and in terms of prestige, is not unlike the Oscar. In fact, the trophy, which stands at 9 feet, is surrounded by GNRS’s rendition of the Oscar statuette, only these statues are decked out in colors and patterns that you might see painted on fully customized street rods. The AMBR competition is open to all U.S. built roadsters, roadster pickups and touring vehicles 1937 and older, including designer roadsters that resemble a 1937 or older roadster. Overall stance, sound, how the owner fits in his own car, fit and finish, engineering and a multitude of other considerations such as body, paintwork, upholstery, and craftsmanship are considered. And the winner is…

America’s Most Beautiful Roaster (AMBR)

A 1936 Packard Coach Built, Disappearing Top was crowned America’s Most Beautiful Roadster at the 2017 Grand National Roadster Show – the first Packard to win in this Show’s 68-year history. This dream car, which took six years to create, was made possible by Bruce Wanta, its owner, and the dedicated team at Hollywood Hot Rods. It takes only one look at the sleek and flowing body of this Mulholland Speedster to see how it came in first at the Grand National Roadster Show in what is typically a Ford-dominated competition. For more photos of the car, check out the below slideshow, and watch the video, where the owner talks about the creation of this special car.


To be selected as finalist for the AMBR award is in itself quite an accomplishment. The other dozen contenders that made the cut were each exceptional builds representing both traditional hot rods and one-off masterpieces.


Other AMBR Contenders

1937 FordGlen McElroy
1932 Ford PickupMatthew Gordon
1928 LincolnShawn Killion
1927 DodgeMatt Taylor
1928 FordBill Grant
1932 FordDan Peterson
1932 FordScott Hawley
1932 Ford PickupDon Lindfors
1929 FordWayne Johnson
1934 FordJim McPherson
1932 FordGordon Gray
1932 FordJames Hetfield

America’s Most Beautiful Motorcycle

The Grand National Roadster Show also showcases the top builds in motorcycles. This year, America’s Most Beautiful Motorcycle award went to a totally hand-built custom bike named Xpression. The motorcycle was a Chip Foose design built by Ken Reister, and was patterned after the Foose 2006 AMBR-winning 1936 Ford roadster, named Impression. Here is Xpression, as well as some other eye-catching cycles at the show.


Click here to see more, including the South California Woodie Club, Tri-5 Chevys, and the Suede Palace.