Holley LS Fest is a multi-day celebration of the iconic General Motors V8 engine and as such, it mostly attracts vehicles from GM brands like Chevrolet, Cadillac and Pontiac. Cars from other makes with LS engine swaps, such as this International Harvester pickup truck, are still a big part of LS Fest, however, and usually account for some of the more interesting custom builds at the event each year.
This LS-swapped 1973 International Harvester pickup immediately caught the attention of the Holley crew while they passing through this year’s 2020 LS Fest East event in Bowling Green. The owner, Mike Chambers, wanted to buy something a bit different than the Chevrolets and Fords that so many classic car enthusiasts go for. When he found the truck on Copart, said he thought it was “so ugly that it was unique,” and decided to see what he could do to make it look a bit better. It may sound like he’s being a bit mean to his Harvester, but it was originally sold as a 1210 Camper Special with a long bed and finished in a questionable shade of baby blue, so it wasn’t really a looker.
With some helpful input from his wife, Chambers was able to transform the oddly styled Harvester into a genuinely cool sport pickup. He originally wanted to paint the truck black and give it chrome bumpers, but his wife told him that was an “old man’s truck” and suggested he go with something a bit more youthful. On her suggestion, he went with a coat of glossy slate grey paint and black bumpers and trim. He also took her advice with the wheels, opting for a set of gloss black American Racing Salt Flat wheels instead of more traditional five-spoke alloys. Inside, she used tartan plaid from a VW Golf GTI to give the truck a vintage look with a modern feel.
Hear what else Chambers has to say about his LS-swapped 1973 International Harvester in the video embedded below, which comes courtesy of Holley.