Â By CRM Staff
|Launier took home his first Ridler with this ’64 Buick Riviera.||Â|
Detroit, Michigan — March 10, 2014 –Â Canadian custom car designer JF Launier has won the “Great 8” Ridler Award at Detroit Autorama 2014.Â
Launier, owner of the Osoyoos, B.C.-based JF Kustoms, took home the prestigious award for his custom ’64 Buick Riviera–dubbed “Rivision”–that beat out seven other amped-up cars to bring home the weekend’s big prize.
The Ridler Award is named after the late Don Ridler, one of the original promotors of Autorama in the 1950s, who is remembered for his dedication, creativity and professionalism, qualities which helped Autorama develop and grow. Originally given to the best vehicle shown for the first time, the award for the last 49 years has acknowleged the latest and newest ideas, designs and automotive concepts. The award presently additionally acknowledges efforts in creativity, engineering and workmanship.Â
A multiple “Great 8” finalist, Launier’s “Rivision” marks the first time Launier has won a Ridler. The design was modified from the ’64 Buick, but much of the exterior took cues from the boattail-style rear glass, which was a notable feature on the ’71 Riviera, with front fender vents, profile and a compactness reminiscent of the ’63-’67 Corvette Stingray.
Gone were the backseats of the Buick, which was turned into a 850 horsepower turbo V8 with a six-speed manual gearbox, while the twin superchargers, waste gates and plumbing all could be found in the rear deck compartment.Â