Do you ever feel like your car is lacking? Lacking in power? Lacking in size? Lacking in engine displacement? Lacking in rarity? Well, here’s your chance to change all that. Auction site Car & Classic is getting ready to offer up the one –the only – The Beast. This beige-on-beige ode to excess built by automotive engineer John Dodd could be yours.
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Other than the looks, the biggest highlight of The Beast is undoubtedly its engine. The vehicle may have started life as a Rolls-Royce, but whatever motor it had is long gone. In its place is a 27-liter Rolls-Royce Merlin V12 engine. Yes, that Merlin engine. The one from the World War II Spitfire fighter plane. Well, I’ll be honest. It isn’t that exact engine, since the one in the plane is supercharged.
But don’t worry, it’s still no slouch. The Beast’s 27-liter (1,648 cubic inch!) engine supposedly makes an estimated 760 horsepower, but keep in mind that this thing has never been (and probably should never be) on a dyno. Still, back in 1973 it had a verified top speed run of 183 mph. Not too shabby. Dodd was a specialist when it came to automatic transmissions, so he was able to build out a GM Turbo 400 three-speed autobox connected to a Currie rear axle to handle all the power.
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According to the listing, Dodd (who passed back in December), is still listed as the owner and could be seen regularly tinkering with and driving The Beast around the UK.
The all-fiberglass exterior of The Beast is just as wild as the engineering that went into it. Starting up front you’ve got eight headlights (family truckster-style) with a big ol’ grille and the initials “JD” in the middle.
Apparently, The Beast used to wear a regular Rolls-Royce grille, but the British luxury automaker wasn’t too fond of that. In fact, Rolls-Royce took Dodd to court, and a few years later it was switched out for the grille you see today.
To say The Beast is wild looking would be quite the understatement. In my eyes, it looks like if a BMW clownshoe Z3 Coupe took gas station enhancement pills. It’s perfect, if you ask me.
This is actually the second iteration of The Beast. The first one was destroyed in a fire when Dodd was on his way back from Sweden, but this didn’t stop Dodd. Instead of just giving up, he built The Beast you see here, and it’s even longer than the first one. Bless this man.
Inside the beige vehicle is a beige interior with — surprisingly — just two seats. That means its rear cargo space is truly massive. Hell, this is a practical car! The driver’s space is definitely a custom job with a few carry-over Rolls-Royce pieces to go along with it.
One would have to imagine that it’ll be pretty safe in a crash despite there not being any airbags. I mean, hell. The front of the car is in a different timezone. You could probably run over a number of people in the British proletariat before you even realize.
So, if you’re one of those people to whom size really matters, this is the perfect vehicle for you. Please, one of you, buy The Beast and let me drive it.