Four Engines, All Wheel Drive, 100% Bad Ass: Riviera Wagon Master

Illustration for article titled Four Engines, All Wheel Drive, 100% Bad Ass: Riviera Wagon Master

You have to be a certifiable maniac to dream this big. Take four, 425ci Buick engines, two drive axles, a custom Buick station wagon body and a truckload of ingenuity and what do you get? Tommy Ivo's "Riviera Wagon Master". By all accounts it was kinda slow, running the quarter in the 8's - on gasoline, did we say slow? We meant holy crap!. The vehicle had the distinction of being the first car specifically banned by the NHRA. After stripped of its race card, the car become drag racing's first exhibition car. It's on the list of things to see when we get around to the NHRA Hall of Fame where it rests today. How did the car drive on the strip? Why don't we just let a quote from Tommy Ivo do that work.

"With the tire improvements brought on by M&H, we could use more horsepower, and using two motors was one of the ways to get it. I saw Howard's 'Twin Bear' at Bakersfield in '59 and decided that a side-by-side combination would transfer more of the car's static weight on the rear tires rather than a tandem design. But I did it differently. Howard had simply turned one engine around. I reversed the engine's rotation and ran it backwards. We simply meshed double-wide starter gears on the flywheels together and use a multi-disc clutch to directly drive the car through an offset third member. The engines would torque 'outside-in' so the car would go up and down when I cracked the throttle and not torque steer when I lifted. Better yet, it ran nine-flat the first time out and then became the first gas-burning dragster to run in the eights—and the first to run 170, then 180 on gas. Best of all it handled great and was nearly bulletproof."


We want RS4 Avant's with 4 engines... stat!




Running the engine backwards. So it would mesh with another engine. And the entire chassis bows under torque.

This should be my daily driver.