Our friends over at Hemmings brought the latest evidence of the restoration vs. preservation internal battle to light with the recent acquisition of a Big Willie Robinson Daytona.

Now, we can appreciate the new owner’s right to do whatever he wants with the car he rightfully owns, right? But when there’s some goddam history involved, well, that’s next-level shit. In this case, it sounds like the new owner of the last of Big Willie’s Daytonas didn’t just go off on some bullshit restoration project where he threw a wheelbarrow of cash at the project and removed every bit of handpainted, rough-cut, hammered, wrinkled, bent and force-of-will personality from the car…only to roll it out to shows and bask in the cheap, florescent glow of the shallow adulation of man-babies in lion-tamers and bluetooths before heading off to Chili’s for Bleu-Cheese-Jack-Wings and pints of Cleveland Steamer Brown Summer Pale Ale all across this great nation, then selling it at some Barrett-Jackson auction to some other fat-ass for 36x what he put into it. And so it goes.

No, this guy definitely seems to have put some real thought into the car. And, while it sucks that he felt he had to make the decision to go full resto on it, Corey Owens has our heart for really doing the due-diligence and considering a preservation of one of the last significant relics of the Big Willie Robinson legacy, before making the decision to fully restore it.

Good stuff, Corey. Can’t wait to see the car when you’re done and we think the Brotherhood would be proud…


  1. Jim says:

    Was this car authenticated? All I see is some stickers and fauxtina lettering that doesn’t even closely match the original on the door. Not many people UN-flared the fenders before restoration. Looks like someone took a beat Bird- slapped MODERN American rims on it, patched in the scoop, added a few stickers and said this is the car. Not seeing any hard proof thats the car.

  2. Leave it exactly the way it is to honor the big man,feel proud and just Joe dirt it!

  3. STONER says:

    Just to be clear, Jim: the two cars above are not one and the same. Our bad on that–we realize it looks a little confusing. Check the link and you’ll see that Kurt does a great job of explaining the origins of the found car…

  4. Yum. Blue cheese jack wings.

  5. jack pine says:

    Man, I would love to get 36x of what I put into a car, even if it meant I had to eat at Chili’s

  6. I heard this yeard at Quail Lodge, Don Orosco had on display, the first production Detroit automotive car crusher. Complete with hydraulic ram and giant crane magnet, it had its own rail car that it once used to transport the squished cars to a metal recycling center back east. It was a great history lesson in Americas struggle to learn from its mistakes and hide them efficiently and privately. These days all those squished cars get put on a barge and floated off to China.

    My vote, run that ugly bastard through Dons vintage car squisher. Ugly is as timeless as disposing bodies at a wrecking yard.
    That corn ball Buck Rogers nose was such a sad attempt at Camaro-ing out a fucking Chrysler product. They shoulda kept it obtuse and lunch boxy. Let Chevrolet build beautiful American muscle, Mopar is for the fat chicks and the lowbrow art record collecting nerds. The akward beauty, or rather, the beauty COMPROMISE. Nothing made chubby girls interesting like bangs and cherry tattoos in the 90′s. The charger is like a Misfits lunch box for Megan, the girl that didnt make the cheerleading squad. Nothing says winning isnt everything like driving a Scamp with big rubber bumper guards or a Swinger with a Rocket From The Crypt sticker on the dash.

    Come on folks, send that thing to Orosco, crush it, melt it down float it to Hong Kong and turn it into a Scion. The worlds planned attempt at making ugly interesting. Then a bunch of dorks can pile in it and get to their flash mob on time.

  7. Steve Soloy says:

    When Big Willie was running Terminal Island Raceway the Daytona was black, rough and fast as a street racer. The original Daytona’s were built for Nascar and sold for street use to get the numbers built so they met Nascar rules, but I think any Mopar nut knows this. Willie was a genuine person interested in getting street racers off the street and onto a safe track and the City of Los Angeles screwed him over with promises of a track then reniged to buid a storage lot for shipping containers. As a former racer at Terminal Island I would like to see Willie’s Daytona left as a tribute to his efforts.

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