Cliff Mattis’ 1932 Boydster II
Cliff Mattis is no stranger to cool hot rods and custom cars. He’s had a string of them through the years, including a slick contemporary-style ’59 Chevy wagon and a Goodguys 2018 Street Rod Headquarters Custom of the Year finalist – the ’41 Buick dubbed Dillinger, built by his friend Marcos Garcia of Lucky 7 Customs. Cliff teamed up with Marcos again for this roadster project based on a Boydster II.
The original Boydster II was an America’s Most Beautiful Roadster-winning Boyd Coddington creation based on a Chip Foose design, with a handmade body by Marcel DeLay. This was in the early-2000s at the height of Boyd Coddington’s popularity and resulted in licensed fiberglass versions of the body being built by Deuce Customs in Australia and imported to the U.S. Cliff always appreciated the sleek lines of the custom roadster and jumped at the chance to buy one of the fiberglass examples a while back.
As you’d expect from a Coddington-based vehicle, the roadster rides on a purpose-built frame with all the modern comforts like independent front and rear suspensions, rack-and-pinion steering, and Wilwood disc brakes. Cliff opted for Yokohama-wrapped Forgeline wheels with spokes painted to match the body.
Power comes from a tried-and-true small-block Chevy backed by a TH400 automatic, but naturally the combination is detailed to the nines, with a stack injection system, custom valve covers, Hooker headers, and stainless exhaust.
Cliff had no desire to alter the Boyd-based lines but called on Marcos to blend a custom PPG root beer hue to give the full-fendered body a rich, sophisticated look. The beautiful finish was complemented with supple, butterscotch-colored leather stitched by Rich Santana. There’s also a lift-off top done by Sid Chavers. Other details include a Classic Instruments gauge cluster, Billet Specialties wheel, and Performance Automatic shifter.
The finished roadster checked all the boxes Cliff had wanted in a custom roadster. It’s sleek, sophisticated, and powerful, combining design influences from some of street rodding’s celebrated luminaries with craftsmanship from some modern masters. It’s a mix of elements that certainly befits a Street Rod d’Elegance finalist.
Photos by John Jackson