Author: Ben Hosking

Feature Car: Peter Kelly's 1961 EK Holden

LS-Powered Elite EK Holden

Peter Kelly’s 1961 EK Holden is ‘retrotech’ personified. Not only does it boast an LS1 conversion, but you’ll also find every mod-con under the sun within the 1961 sedan. Even if it didn’t come with all the special sauces, the car still features all the right cues, from a perfect stance and big billet rollers to flawless Audi RS4-inspired leather trim and die-straight panels and smooth metallic blue paint. 

You can read all about the build in the June 2022 issue of Street Machine

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Feature Car: Tony Murr's Ford XA Falcon

8sec 454ci XA Falcon Street Car

Tony Murr’s Ford XA Falcon was photographed for the May 2022 issue of Street Machine magazine.

It runs a 454ci Clevo, based around an Arrow block with a 1050cfm Pro Systems carb, CNC ported heads and backed by a custom 9in rear with 35-spline axles.

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Feature Car: Marcus Nikolic's Holden VL Calais

Blown LS2-Powered VL Calais

Marcus Nikolic is bound to make most people jealous. The fact that he’s a young guy will only exacerbate things. Marcus owns this super smooth, supercharged LS2-powered Holden VL Calais at an age where most folks are still lucky to be punting around in their first sub-$2000 shitbox.

With a strong and savvy work ethic, he built up enough coin to buy the VL with the LS2 conversion already done and he says the car was in immaculate condition when he found it for sale. But as you can imagine, a whole lot more took place before it came to be voted People’s Choice in the Top 60 hall at Summernats this past January.

The car now boasts a built LS2, topped with a Harrop TVS2650 blower and backed by a T400 and braced 9in. If that weren’t enough, the car now rides on 22in Simmons FR rims, measuring 12 inches wide under the ass.

I shot the car on a dismal rainy day at Marcus’ work and it featured in the May 2022 issue of Street Machine.

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Feat Car: Brett Russell's Holden LX Torana

Big-Block LX Torana Hatch

This was actually the second time I’d had the luck to get Brett Russell’s incredible big-block-powered Holden LX Torana hatch in front of my lens. The first time was some six or seven years ago for the cover of Xtreme Holdens magazine.

Outwardly, you’d be forgiven for thinking that the car hadn’t changed much in that time, however Brett has further refined the car since its original photo shoot. Today, it’s a great car to drive and has more torque than any mere mortal should probably ever hope to have in a car as nimble as this LX.

On paper, the car boasts 427-cubic-inches of alloy Merlin-based beauty. This is topped with 11.3:1-comp- CNC-ported heads and 750cfm Quick Fuel carbs that replace the original – and admittedly troublesome -EFI setup. 

There’s a raft of chassis and suspension mods under the car that stiffen things up and make it handle like the car is on rails. It’s a complete package and totally worthy of its place within the hallowed pages of Street Machine.


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Feature Car: Jason Pellett's HR Holden

Jason Pellett's 1966 HR Holden

I’ve come across a number of car guys like Jason Pellett in my time shooting cars. Indeed, many of them know each other quite well. What type of car guy am I talking about? Prolific self-builders that churn out brilliant street cars like their lives are depending on it.

One of the first cars I ever photographed was Jason’s partner Ashley’s pink Commodore in 2011 or so. More recently I photographed Jason’s clinically-clean white HG Holden sedan and not that long after, Jason let me know he’d just finished another Holden: this LS-powered two-tone HR.

Jason has a certain style to his builds so far: super clean, no unnecessary bling, smooth engine bays and clean interior trims. This grey and black HR Premier sedan is no exception to those rules. It even wears the Showwheels Streeter rims like his old HG did.

What’s most impressive is that all his machines are built in the shed at home. According to Jason “Our projects never leave the shed. We roll them in and they drive out under their own power”.

My photo shoot was featured in the April 2022 issue of Street Machine.

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Feature Car: Steve Santos' AP5 Valiant

Steve Santos' 1963 AP5 Valiant

I’ve had the privilege of working with Steve Santos a number of times over the last decade – shooting his cars for various magazines, including his iconic twin-turbo Walky and blown BOSS-powered XY Falcon.

More recently I spent a few days down in the nation’s capital and photographed Steve’s two latest projects: a super tasty LS-powered EH wagon and this truly fine turbocharged and injected, slant-six AP5 Valiant sedan. What’s even more special is the fact that Steve built the car of a few months as a gift for his father!

Despite the short time frame, this was a proper rebuild. The engine bay was smoothed, wiring hidden, bodywork straightened to perfection and the interior gutted and finely restored and brought well and truly into the 21st century. 

The shoot was featured in the April 2022 issue of Street Machine.

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Feature Car: Maher Azzam's 1976 Mk1 VW Golf

Incredible Mk1 Golf Self-Build

I ran into Maher Azzam and his superbly clean 1976 Mk1 Volkswagen Golf at the VW Nationals in 2021 and immediately sought him out for a feature shoot. VWMA picked up the car for a full feature and you can see why when you look at the photos.

Powered by a mostly-standard 2L 16V four-cylinder (and a pair of Weber DCOE 45s), the engine is housed in a pristine bay. The car was treated to a bare metal respray in the factory ivory. It took Maher a year to do the job himself, block sanding the car five times to minimise the use of filler.

The car sits in the weeds on a set of BBS-style 15in alloy rims with the rears measuring 8.5in wide. It’s achieved with a set of BC Racing coil-overs and the looks is both purposeful and sexy.

Inside, you’ll find a later-model dash conversion and a re-trimmed interior that looks in keeping with the period. Even the stereo features a three-cassette storage unit.

You can still find issue 73 of VWMA on newsstands now, so go grab yourself a copy and catch up on the whole story. What a DIY hero!

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Cover Shoot: Street Machine - March 2022

Michelle White's HZ Holden Premier

The March issue of Street Machine is on sale now and features my photo shoot on Michelle White’s HZ Holden Premier on the front cover! You’ll also find my photo shoot on Paul Camilleri’s gorgeous LX Torana sedan inside, complete with a frame from his massive shed skid. Check my socials soon for the full video of that effort! 🙂

I’ll post some more photos from both photo shoots over the coming weeks. So stay tuned. In the meantime, get out and grab yourself a copy of the new mag.

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Feature Car: Louis Younis' 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air

Tubbed, blown and slammed...

My photo shoot on Louis Younis’ 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air marks the third vehicle I’ve photographed that belongs to this prolific car builder… and they’ve all been black! You probably remember his blown LJ Torana from a recent cover of Street Machine. But I also photographed his Turbo LS-powered VK sedan few years back.

Powered by a 6/71-blown 383ci small-block, the car actually rides on a 1955 chassis that boasts Strange coil-overs front and rear along with tubular front arms, drop spindles and rack and pinion steering. It’s built to drive and Louis plans to get the beast out regularly, as evidenced by the trio of baby seats across the rear bench!

The images appeared in the January 2022 issue of Street Machine magazine.

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Front Cover: Anandh's 1965 VW Beetle

Slammed, Stroked and Dead Sexy

Issue 73 (Feb/April 2022) of VW Magazine Australia hits the newsstands this week and features two of my photo shoots. The shoot on Anandh Maistry’s incredible 1965 Beetle graces the front cover, with an inset shot of Maher’s  slammed Mk1 Golf.

Be sure to grab a copy from your local newsagency to read more about these two distinct and amazing builds! I’ll post more images from both shoots over the coming months.

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