Simply put, Blue Ridge Hot Rods makes you proud to be an American.
The company builds cars—beautiful, insane, amazing cars—and even though they are located in Staunton, Virginia, their custom autos are frequently bought by, built for and shipped to customers who live in Manhattan and in the Hamptons.
At Blue Ridge Hot Rods, the philosophy and goal of the company is simple: to custom build, part by part, classic all-American hot rods and combine those sensational bodies and engines with the modern technology of today. This Virginia outfit lives, breathes and eats gorgeous classic cars. Just looking at pictures of the vehicles gives you a little chill down your spine.
The owner of the company is Loren Harris, who grew up in his father’s shop doing exactly what he does today. “My father opened up a shop in 1958 and I worked for him for 17 years before I opened up my own shop. Today I have over 10,000 square feet of space and I’m here seven days a week. My brother also works here. We love every second of it. We just really love our business and building cars. It’s great.
“You know how people say that you should try to live your dreams?” he continues. “That’s how I feel about what I do. It’s incredibly satisfying to bring these cars to life in our shop and to see how beautiful they are, how well they run, the incredible engines that are behind them—it’s all just really special.”
During an interview with Mr. Harris, I realized not only is he passionate about what he does, but that his passion is infectious. I consider myself to be somebody who is interested in cars, but in the same way I’m interested in anything else that is fun and fast. Yet by the end of our conversation, I found myself reading and figuring out what makes a 500-horse-power, all-aluminum, fuel-injected LS-3 engine tick inside of a Corvette. Just such an engine roars in a custom 1959 Corvette built by Mr. Harris and sold to one of his repeat East End clients, Joe Farrell of Farrell Building Co., a top custom luxury home builder in the Hamptons. You have to figure that if Joe Farrell—a man who is very successful at building unbelievably impressive homes for the most discerning real estate customers in the world—likes Mr. Harris’s work, then there’s something to those cars.
And there is.
We’re talking the best of the best, not just on the East Coast but among custom car building in all of the United States. Mr. Harris’s vehicles are frequently shown at top auto shows, but they aren’t there for people to simply look at—they are there to win. Blue Ridge Hot Rods’ vehicles have claimed first place in multiple categories at auto shows across the country, including the prestigious Detroit Autorama. And the cars Blue Ridge Hot Rods builds are collectibles, which makes them investments that go up in value, not down, when they hit the road.
So just how exactly did a guy building hot rods in Virginia start becoming the buzz word for hot rods in the Hamptons? Mr. Harris explains, “The lion’s share of our clients are between Bridgehampton and Manhattan. I had a client who wanted a ’57 Chevy and through that client I met Joe Farrell, and we’ve ended up building seven cars for him. Since then, word got around the Hamptons that we built classic, custom cars, any way you want, with modern technology. And once people see what we do, they are interested.
“Our cars combine the stunning looks of the classic bodies with modern technology. Everything within our vehicles is brand new. They are built with the older styled bodies but have GPS, iPhone connection, power everything—it’s like sitting in a brand new Aston Martin. We take literally the best of both worlds.”
Check out a photo gallery of incredible Blue Ridge Hot Rods by clicking here.
Blue Ridge Hot Rods can be reached at 540-324-1060.