KATH McKenzie’s love for classic Holdens began at a young age and was inherited from her father. Ever since her dad brought home an EH Holden when she was a kid, Kath has had an EH build on mind. Now she shares with us the process of building her dream ride.
I definitely got my love for classic cars and bikes off my dad, but the EH was my dream car. When I was 17 my dad went out one Saturday morning and came home with a maroon EH 186-powered hottie. I saw him drive down the driveway and was like: “What!?” I ran outside and asked whose it was and he said he bought it for himself. I was pretty devastated, so he asked if I wanted it and I said: “Hell yeah!” So that’s where it all started. I put the L-plates up and off went. As soon as I got my licence I was always the designated driver; everyone loved cruising around in it. Lots of fun was had.
Later on I decided to get a newer-model car, but shortly afterwards I missed having an old car. So in 2002 I found another EH in Saturday’s paper that needed a full resto, so started again. played designer for the build and did some stripping down of the car. My dad Macca and his mates did most of the work; it took around 12 months to complete. When I first finished the car in 2003 it still had the original 179 and column-shift auto, and had it as an everyday driver for two years before I turned it into a weekender. My dad changed the engine over in 2013 to the original out of my first EH, which was a 186 bored out to a 192.
During the past 18 months I have started getting my hands dirty; my good mate Domo has done quite a bit of work on the car and I’ve been his apprentice. We lowered it, shortened the diff and added new leaf springs. I did heaps of sandblasting and we put the new chrome smoothies and whitewalls on. We also changed the engine over a month ago as I was having overheating issues; now I run a stroked 186S with a Yella Terra head, Weber carby and a 202 crank.
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I went to pick the colour and had a bright sky blue in my mind, but when I saw the metallic Kawasaki candy lime green I was hooked! There weren’t many cars around back then that were bright, and I definitely wanted it to stand out. I had some bodywork and a full respray done around two years ago by another mate, Adam Drever – the same green but I added the Xirallic pearl to the roof. For the interior I stuck with black and white, adding some green piping on the seats to tie it all in.
When I first drove it I would constantly get asked if it was my dad’s or my boyfriend’s car; there weren’t many chicks back then that drove cars like that!
I love taking it out on sunny days, taking it to car shows and taking my two young boys out in it. They call it Mummy’s cool car. I also really enjoy cruising solo; it’s the best way to clear my head and instantly changes my mood to carefree; I get an overwhelming feeling of happiness. I think all car lovers can relate to this feeling.
I’ve been wanting my dad to build me a custom Harley Trike; that’s his specialty and what he’s known for, and honestly I’d feel safer on three wheels rather than two. That’s in the pipeline now. So next I will need a bigger shed!