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What Is a Deuce Coupe?

Dan Cavallari
Dan Cavallari

The term "Deuce Coupe" refers to a certain model of Ford automobile that was commonly used as a hot rod. The 1932 Ford Model B was known as the Deuce Coupe because it was a two-seat vehicle; the Deuce referred to the two in the year 1932, and the Coupe refers to the body style. This car was popular among hot rodders because it could be stripped of weight and modified for speed fairly easily. The Model B was an updated version of the famous Ford Model A, and it featured a four cylinder engine. Later models did feature a V-8 engine for added power.

The Deuce Coupe is a highly sought-after collectible car that is still made into hot rods, though a shortage of original Model Bs has created the need for reproductions. Some hot rod kits are reproductions of the Model B, though instead of being made from the original types of materials, modern Deuce Coupe kits are often made of fiberglass. This helps cut down on weight, and the materials are readily available and easy to mold into the proper body panel shapes.

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The process of converting the Deuce Coupe into a hot rod involved upgrading the engine to a stronger, larger engine and cutting down on unnecessary weight that could slow the vehicle down. Wider tires were often installed at the rear of the vehicle, and the aesthetics of the car were often improved by using chrome parts and custom paint jobs. The engine was often exposed to allow for better air cooling as well as air delivery to the engine, further enhancing the power output of the engine. Since the engines that replaced the original four-cylinder engine were often much heavier, upgrades to the frame and front axle were sometimes necessary to ensure the vehicle did not break down during use.

There were two general body styles of the Deuce Coupe: one featured five windows and two doors, while another was a three window version that featured suicide doors. Suicide doors are doors that open in the opposite direction as most car doors; the hinge is at the rear of the door rather than the front. The suicide door versions do tend to be more sought after, though both body styles are highly collectible and very expensive, even if the car is not in good or fair condition. The following model years led to substantial changes in the design of the car, which made these models sought after as well, especially among hot rodders.

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