THAT WAGON LIFE

HOW A BIG­GER PLAT­FORM LEFT MORE ROOM FOR CUS­TOMIZA­TION, AND HOW A RE­CEIPT FOR A SET OF HIGH HEELS AL­MOST ENDED IT ALL

Low Rider - - ROLLPLAYERZ - STORY & PHO­TOS BY PHIL GOR­DON

Although the Dodge Mag­num was first in­tro­duced in the United States in 1978, it only lasted one year in pro­duc­tion as a coupe be­fore be­ing pulled. In 2004, the Dodge Mag­num name­plate was re­vived, ex­cept this time around it was brought back as a rear­wheel-drive sta­tion wagon that struck a nerve with car cus­tomiz­ers glob­ally.

For decades, the sta­tion wagon has gained no­to­ri­ety as be­ing a fam­ily car, but its im­pos­ing size and large can­vas also made it a tar­get for those look­ing to cus­tom­ize it. But for one “West Coast South­ern Boy,” who was raised in Los An­ge­les but moved to Alabama, sta­tion wag­ons have been his life. At the age of 18, he started off with an '87 Ford LTD sta­tion wagon that he pur­chased for $300. “It was the only thing I could af­ford in my price range,” Ant­wan Todd, owner of this Mag­num, says. In the be­gin­ning it was his trusty LTD that would serve him as a mode of trans­porta­tion and source of in­spi­ra­tion.

Look­ing to change his life, Ant­wan de­cided to study at Nashville Auto Diesel Col­lege be­cause he wanted to learn how to build and cus­tom­ize his own ve­hi­cles. With his loy­alty and at­tach­ment to sta­tion wag­ons, it came as a sur­prise when Dodge re­leased the brand-new Dodge Mag­num in 2005. “Most of my friends were cus­tomiz­ing Charg­ers or Chrysler

300s,” Ant­wan adds. “I had this vi­sion of be­ing dif­fer­ent and go­ing a dif­fer­ent di­rec­tion.” Ant­wan pur­chased an '05 Dodge Mag­num RT straight from the Dodge deal­er­ship.

Although the build started out slow, Ant­wan did mi­nor up­grades while he con­tin­ued to pay off the new Mag­num. Af­ter the five-year loan was sat­is­fied, Ant­wan fo­cused his funds on build­ing the Mag­num to new heights. As a trained and ef­fi­cient painter, Ant­wan used a cus­tom mix of pearls from Xotic Colours to set the Dodge apart from the rest. A cus­tom hood and body kit was added to stand out. The next step was bring­ing the Dodge closer to the ground. Ant­wan en­listed J&J Kus­tomz in Theodore, Alabama, to add a full air-ride sus­pen­sion. Once the cus­tom air-ride setup was in­stalled, Ant­wan found it dif­fi­cult to add a cus­tom stereo sys­tem be­cause of the lack of space left. He be­gan look­ing on­line for dif­fer­ent in­stalls and hap­pened to come up with a unique, one-of-a-kind idea.

“Sexy Mag­gie” would take on its name by hav­ing a woman fiber­glassed in­side the rear of the Mag­num with speak­ers for her bot­tom. Keep­ing it a se­cret from his wife Janel, he brought the Dodge to Mir­a­cle Auto Sports where Ant­wan and the owner Archie put their ideas to­gether to cre­ate some­thing that had never been done be­fore. Ant­wan de­cided to add high heels where the woman’s feet were mounted, so he mea­sured them and went to the store to pur­chase high heels. In a mo­ment of ab­sent­mind­ed­ness he left the re­ceipt at home where his wife found it. The “We need to talk” call came next and Ant­wan had to re­veal that the heels were for his car and not an­other girl, which nearly ended their mar­riage. Once the in­side stereo setup was com­plete, Ant­wan sent out ev­ery­thing chrome for en­grav­ing where Lu­gos En­grav­ing, En­grave It Inc., and Krazy Kut­ting all had their hands in en­grav­ing.

Ant­wan wishes to thank is VERY un­der­stand­ing wife, Janel, for not killing him and al­low­ing him his cre­ative vi­sion. He also wishes to thank Don­ald Craig and Den­nis

Pugh Jr. for all the la­bor they put in as well as Archie Wright at Mir­a­cle

Auto Sports for bring­ing to life his unique vi­sion. A spe­cial thanks goes to Bobby Wash­ing­ton at Its A New Look Up­hol­stery as well as Jonathan Harvi­son at J&J Kus­tomz for the hard work. He’d also like to thank all the spon­sors and friends and fam­ily and his Swift club for al­ways be­ing there. "Sexy Mag­gie" is one car that once you see it, you won’t ever for­get.

This drag­gin' wagon is a Mag­num force.

VE­HI­CLE MODEL 2005 MAG­NUM RT BY DODGE

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