Mike Yenerich has been experimenting with the automotive arts for over 25 years and admits that this 59 El Camino is one of the most spectacular cars he has ever put together. We met up with Mike at the Street Machine Nationals in Indianapolis where he debuted his new ride.
It all started approximately five years ago when previous-owner Jeff McCraw began the buildup. The car was painted white, slammed, and sitting on 15-inch Center Line wheels. The El Camino demanded something drastic so he welded the tailgate shut and filled in the seams to accommodate sedan taillights. This also required a custom bed cover. After three years under McCraws ownership he put the El Camino up for sale.
Mike ran across a picture of the 59 at a local paint shop. Once the car was in his possession, he dialed in a complete Air Ride Technologies suspension system, along with front disc brakes and power steering. When the El Caminos stance had achieved perfection, he added a set of Billet Specialties wheels to finish it off. With these modifications now Mike says his 59 rides like a hovercraft.
A 59 El Camino offers distinctive body lines, and Mike knew that highlighting them would be the key to a strong impact. He challenged Letters, Lines, and Designs Scott Montgerard and Jim Ross of Lynwood, Illinois, to handle the task. Scott and Jim enlisted Jim Hanson and Darrin Vargo for help. Once they came up with a plan, Jim fabricated custom aluminum engine compartment pans, and Scott went to work applying a layer of white paint with a touch of Pearl. After applying the base color, they added Ford Electronic Current Red to offset the white. As the El Camino neared completion, Mike left it with VOS upholstery for threads and Music in Motion for tunes.
The next time you attend a car show and ponder the hot rodders effort, you will be able to relate to this 59 El Camino. It took over five years and two owners to trick out this dare-to-be-different cruiser.