We’d be willing to bet that very few alumni of FHM Magazine’s “100 Sexiest Women in the World” have also been featured with their cars in DUB Magazine, and we would almost guarantee that Courtney Hansen is the only one in that population that was once called by Hot Rod Magazine “the female face of hot rodding.” Intrigued? So were we. Courtney is a former co-host of TLC’s Overhaulin’, and is the current host of Spike TV’s PowerBlock every Saturday and Sunday. Courtney has a new show on Spike TV premiering on August 17th at 10am ET/PT called Great Builds (more below), and she was also a stunt car driver on the set of The Dark Knight. Okay, we made up the part about being a stunt car driver, but that’s probably the only thing that could make Courtney Hansen any cooler. With that, another MyRide With.
MyRide: What was your very first car and a favorite memory of it?
Courtney Hansen: Okay, my very first car—actually my dad had to drive it for a while first because I wasn’t old enough to drive it—was a [Chevrolet] Camaro Z28. Was it '92? Can’t even remember the frickin' year, but it was a Z28 Camaro, convertible, Heritage Edition. I loved that car! I then traded it in for a BMW 325i that I bought with hard earned modeling and other work money.
My favorite memory of [the Camaro] I have is actually my favorite memory I have in a car, and also the scariest memory to date. I was cruising, finally able to drive it, 16 years old, and I was at the wheel with a friend of mine. It was raining in Florida because it rains in the summertime. When we left tennis practice it starts pouring rain and we were cruising back roads. I can’t remember if I intended to do a donut or if I did it accidentally, but we did a 360 and I ended up just narrowly escaping hitting this tree head on. Literally the nose of the car was touching the tree trunk, and how we came to a halt right there, I mean, it was by the grace of God, because we could have been seriously injured or killed. I was trying to see what it could do, and thankfully it didn’t end up a disastrous situation.
MyRide: Tell us about your current car situation, what you’re driving, etc.
Courtney Hansen: I have a 2004 Ford Thunderbird that Chip Foose moderately tricked out for me during the Overhaulin’ days. It’s been lowered by two and a half inches, it has an Eibach suspension, it was pinstriped, it has 20-inch Foose Speedster wheels that he designed for his own T-Bird, BFGoodrich radials, a K&N airbox that adds some horsepower, it has a Kicker audio system, and we’re working on a brakes package with Baer and then an exhaust system with Magnaflow. I love that car and I will never sell it. Not only does it mean a lot to me because Chip Foose had his hands on it—and it’s absolutely beautiful—but it reminds me of the ‘57 T-bird, which I have yet to purchase (so that probably will be my next car purchase). I was actually looking to buy a ‘57 T-bird literally to use as a daily driver in L.A. because I’m rarely here, and my dad was like “Courtney, seriously, that is so not a smart idea, that is not a reliable car to be driving on Los Angeles roads every day,” so the 2004 will have to suffice till then. Oh, and here is the other car I have, it’s an Aston Martin DB9 [Volante convertible]. No longer have the Lamborghini Gallardo Spyder or the Ducati.
MyRide: Tell us more about your upcoming show on Spike TV, Great Builds
Courtney Hansen: We’ve only shot the premeire episode so far, but Great Builds is going to cover the best builds among your four PowerBlock shows that we’ve done over the past 20 years. I’m going to be interviewing the guys who built those cars and trucks. We show the build happening on plasma screens, we talk about the build, I interview the people [who built the cars] and host the show, and then we bring on celebrity car builder guests. The first car we did was a ‘55 Chevy "Shoebox" that Chuck [Hanson] and Joe [Elmore] built from the ground up on Horsepower TV. For this we brought on Bobby Alloway, a Ridler winner and an amazing car builder who’s built some incredible creations. Bobby comes on and talks about what he thinks about the car and what he would have done to the car. It’s really fun; I don’t know if you’ve seen the PowerBlock shows where you’ll see only pieces of the build, but on Great Builds it’s an hour long, so we’ll show the entire build from front to back. That’s something the audience has been asking for, and it allows me to be looser and have more fun with it. With Great Builds, I can just have a blast with it and I’m loving it. Very reminiscent of my Overhaulin’ days. It airs on the 17th of August and then again on the 23rd on the following Saturday.
MyRide: You being a former Camaro owner, we have to ask, Dodge Challenger or Chevrolet Camaro?
Courtney Hansen: I think the Camaro is beautiful, but I haven’t seen it in person, and with a lot of these cars you see them on the cover of a magazine and they look entirely different in person, but I’m really eager to check the Camaro out live. But I like them both and I think the manufacturers are finally getting it right and building cars that really reflect the old muscle cars. The Challenger is one of my favorites though, and so if I had to pick right now, I probably would say the Challenger because I haven’t seen the Camaro up close, and I was really impressed with the Challenger in person, and of course, you can’t go wrong with a Hemi engine. Courtney called us two days after the interview to reaffirm her choice after reading more about the Dodge Challenger in Motor Trend, calling it “a beautiful interpretation of the original.”
MyRide: Besides your work with Spike TV’s PowerBlock and the upcoming Great Builds, are there any other automotive projects you are working on?
Courtney Hansen: I’m launching a line of t-shirts that feature positive sayings in the automotive vernacular. It’s called Auto Angels, and I started developing it a couple years ago. I’m finally launching the first three designs of the line in conjunction with the premier of Great Builds. You’ll have to stay tuned to see what they are. They are vintage looking t-shirts with really soft cotton, they’re awesome. I am a really big t-shirt fan and I’m very particular about the t-shirts I like. You’ll be able to find them on my website and MySpace page, and