George Hurst was a hot rodder at heart, but he was also a visionary, an innovator, a brilliant promoter, and particularly skilled at building alliances. Hurst developed and marketed a high-performance line of shifters that would lead the industry and be the cornerstone of the company. After forming an alliance with Anco Industries, Hurst marketed and sold more than 100 speed parts, which included shifters, heads, wheels, and many other parts, and eventually the Hurst catalog became the source for high-performance parts in the1960s and 1970s.
Jack "Doc" Watson joined Hurst and became a pivotal figure within the company, which led to many performance projects with Pontiac. Over the years Hurst was also able to partner with Oldsmobile to build special 442s known as "Hurst" Olds, AMC with their wickedly effective SC Rambler, and Chrysler, creating a number of Super Stock cars as well as the 300H and one of the most memorable exhibition cars in drag racing history, the Hemi Under Glass.
No other company or individual had as big an impact on so many aspects of the automotive industry as George Hurst. His performance parts were some of the best ever, the competition cars won many races, and the muscle cars that bear his name were some of the best of the era. Scores of interviews, in-depth research, and exceptional insight from veteran magazine editor Richard Truesdell and co-author Mark Fletcher has created a great book. Hurst Equipped captures the complete story from the production cars and race cars to the performance parts.
"To illustrate the Hurst's past and present, the authors relied on vintage illustrations and photos, as well as modern photography that takes readers through Hurst-equipped Pontiacs, Hurst/Olds masterpieces, Hurst AMC products and, of course, Hurst Mopar all the way up to the new Challenger and Chrysler 300C.... the hardbound Hurst Equipped does a great job of recalling the golden eras of Hurst in its 160 pages. And, at $39.95, it's a bargain compared to the outdated original book." -Old Cars Weekly, November 22, 2012
"Fletcher and Truesdell pack a lot of information and history into a fairly brief volume, not an easy trick considering the breadth and depth of George Hurst's influence on the automotive scene. Period photos and advertisements mix with contemporary photos of some of Hurst's key projects-- the Hemi Under Glass Baracuda, SC/Rambler, Hurst/Olds-- in a concise history that runs right up to today's limited-edition muscle cars." -Muscle Car Review, January 2013
"Sometimes the shadow on the wall is so much biger than the thing creating the shadow, and that certainly sums up Hurst Performance Products. The company took a pretty small range of offerings and created an image that was so much bigger than the parts they sold. In some ways, Hurst was a triumph of marketing an image over actual performance, and through the showmanship of George Hurst, they kept the image alive well past their ability to thrive as an innovator or sales machine. Hurst Equipped does a nice job of telling that story." -Keith Martin's American Car Collector, Jan/Feb 2013
"Don't pass this book by because it has muscle cars on the cover! Hurst was so much more than performance parts and racecars. This is the first-ever look at the company and its many products and, at least a little bit, the man himself." -speedreaders.info, January 2013
"You know what's really sad? That George Hurst will never get to see this book. It's long overdue, and he would have loved it, we guarantee you." -Jim Donnelly, Hemmings Muscle Machines, March 2013
Watch an the authors of Hurst Equipped chat with Jay Leno about their book: http://www.jaylenosgarage.com/more-video/jays-book-club-hurst-equipped/index.shtml
Richard Truesdell is a veteran magazine editor with more than 25 years of experience. He has written scores of magazine articles and has been the editor-in-chief of Chevy Enthusiast and Car Audio and Electronics. Currently, he is the editorial director of Automotive Traveler. Truesdell lives in Sun City, California.
Mark Fletcher has been a regular contributor to several automotive Web sites and magazines. Fletcher currently resides in Steven's Point, Wisconsin.