An Australian KITT

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An Australian KITT

Post by Amir » Thu Dec 19, 2013 2:11 pm

Not all 'Kitt'' cars are cheap and nasty. Just ask the petrol heads and muscle car fans who were lining up to get a closer look at Glen Blazejak's 1982 Pontiac TransAm at the American Car Nationals on Sunday.

The shiny black missile is an immaculate replica of ''KITT'', the Knight Industries Two Thousand that stole many a scene from a youthful David Hasselhoff in Knight Rider during its four year run from 1982 to 1986.

And, unlike the Hoff, who later went on to star in Baywatch with Pamela Anderson, Carmen Electra and a bevy of other lovelies, KITT looks as good now as way back when.

The vehicle was one of hundreds of American-designed and built automobiles that converged on the Queanbeyan Showground from across the country for a weekend of motoring joie de vivre.

Blazejak, and his partner Rebecca Shields, didn't have far to travel however. They live in Belconnen and have owned their TransAm for four years.

Blazejak, now 34, was three years old when Knight Rider hit the airwaves. He grew up with the program and has been hooked on KITT ever since.

His dreams came true when he said one day: ''wouldn't it be nice to get an old TransAm and do it up''.

Shields, in a move she may now regret, hopped online and tracked the 1982 model down in Adelaide using Google.

An early import, it had been converted to right-hand drive in the 1980s and was owned by a former ACT policemen.

''You don't get a lot of choices when you are looking for a car like this,'' Blazejak, an ActewAGL linesman, said.

''We drove down and took a look at it. The body was pretty good so I bought it.''

The decision to turn it into a Knight Rider clone, a popular conversion in America and Europe, was made early on and a new nose cone, complete with flashing red ''scanner'', was added.

Recaro sports seats have been fitted, a blackout panel for the tail lights sourced and substantial mechanical and electrical work carried out.

''I have been able to do some of the work myself,'' Blazejak said. He has also worked with a mechanic friend on weekends and is particularly pleased with the high-gloss black paintwork, a quality respray that showcases the standard of workmanship available locally.

Shields, while happy with the way the car has turned out and its head- turning abilities, says the downside is that she has introduced ''another woman'' into the family.

''I will say to him [Glen] if it is time for him to go out and give KITT a kiss and a cuddle before he goes to bed,'' she said. ''I have said that for every dollar he spends on the car he should spend a dollar on me - but it hasn't worked out that way.''

The next, and final, step in the conversion is the installation of a replica KITT talking dash. These are complex, expensive and difficult to fit. They are made in America where there is a whole cottage industry that has sprung up around recreating a fictional car with artificial intelligence that never was.

The original KITT cost $US100,000 to build in the early 1980s when that was serious money.

Blazejak said it was the work of the same stylist who turned a DeLorean into the Back To The Future time machine. ''KITT looks heaps better than that,'' he said.

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