1980s Ben-Dera Ford

Turns out, John Bender of Hilliard, Ohio, who built and owns the white Ben-Dera, built and still owns the car's twin, painted gold. "I went to all the auto shows and whatnot and wanted my own dream car," Bender said. "So I just decided to build one." He employed a 2.3-liter Ford Pinto four-cylinder but placed it in the center of the car's chassis. The Pinto's front sub-frame went under the front of the Ben-Dera, then a pair of leaf springs and the Pinto's rear axle kept the rear of the car from dragging. Fiberglass panels over a tubular space frame constituted the outrageous body. The second car used a 2.8-liter V-6 from a Mercury Bobcat, dismissed the three fins on the back, and added air conditioning. Bender said he started the four-cylinder car in the early to mid-1980s and spent about three years and $40,000 on it. The second took less time because he already had the molds developed. "I was going to sell them (he advertised them for $19,750 as recently as seven years ago), but wasn't able to find a buyer," Bender said. "I got worried about people suing me." Would you buy it?


📸/📚: Hemmings (Daniel Strohl from November 2005 issue of Hemmings Classic Car)



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