The common theme is that heat is related to heating a car, which means modifying it for greater performance. One theory is that rod means roadster, a lightweight 2-door car that was often used as the basis for early hot rods. The hot rod is a staple of American history. Often called a street rod, a Hot Rod is a classic American car with an oversized engine modified for speed.
It is this powerful engine that gave the hot rod its name. The term “connecting rod” comes from the connecting rods of the high-powered or “hot” engine. And so, the name of hot rod stayed. The good old days, when America was at its best, are at the heart of the modern hot rod lifestyle.
Others prefer to visit car shows and buy fully constructed street rods with the potential for upgrades and embellishments. It was at that time that the term “street rod” was introduced to separate the street as a high-quality family sect from the counterculture of hot rodding. The popularity of hot rodding fell in the 1980s, although several “clandestine rebel” groups continued to defend the cause. Some of the major national auto shows include Detroit Autorama, America's Most Beautiful Roadster and Street Rod Nationals sponsored by the largest hot rod club in the United States, the National Street Rod Association.
Hot rodders took aerodynamic customization very seriously by cutting rows of grilles or slots in the body, hood and rear cover of a car to ensure efficient engine cooling and circulation when driving at high speed. The hot rod lifestyle of the 1990s remains strong among followers of traditional hot rod culture, often called greasers. A hot rod with a strong, built engine can be impressive at a car show, but it might not take you home in one piece. The popularity of hot rods continued to rise, supported by the formation of the National Hot Rod Association in 1951.Hot rod culture is still alive and well with fans in the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, Sweden and Canada.
While the hot rod craze had begun years before, the end of World War II was the beginning of the most passionate period in hot rod history. At the higher end of the spectrum, specialty street bars with elaborate customizations can cost thousands of dollars. Just as the hot rod was both a hobby and a hobby, it has also been a social statement as early as the 1930s.