Conversion cars. The phrase might set some off on a trip down memory lane, one that is filled with nightmarish Fieros decked out as Lamborghinis or Ferraris. Times change, however, and this year's SEMA 2012 show in Las Vegas, Nevada was packed with customizers looking to capitalize on nostalgia and help keep alive the names of models and brands that have slipped into mists of automotive history.
It seemed like you couldn't turn around at SEMA this year without bumping into a Chevrolet Camaro that had been transformed into a Pontiac Trans Am. A number of shops brought their Trans Am kits to the desert, including Heide Performance Parts, which offers not one, but two different Trans Am looks: a ZTA that draws its inspiration from the mid-to-late 70's models, and a T/A that is more in line with how the car appeared in the earlier part of the decade. The T/A retails for roughly $27,700. For those who are looking to spend a little less money on their Faux-Bird, Z/TA (no relation) offers an appearance-only kit that mimics the Bandit looks of the Black-And-Gold bird for less than $5,000.
Heide Performance Parts didn’t just cater to Pontiac fans at SEMA. The HPP booth also gave muscle car junkies a look at a conversion car that pays tribute to a much rare beast - the Dodge Charger Daytona. This winged warrior is based on the current Dodge Challenger coupe, and it wears the same enormous rear spoiler that once sat tall on the banks of its namesake NASCAR track in the late 1960's. The front of the Daytona conversion also bears the aerodynamic beak found on the original model, and side scallops and special styling cues on the hood and at the top of the front fenders complete the look. Like its predecessor, the modern Dodge Daytona is powered by a Hemi V-8 engine.