The Henry J was built back in the 1950s and never really did very well, eventually dying off after just a few years in 1954. The car was available with an inline four-cylinder, or an optional inline six-cylinder that could be found in the Jeep at that time period.
It was a basic car without a whole lot of options, not much of a classy car, and didn’t even possess a trunk. It was being built as a smaller car during a time when people were seeking larger cars, so eventually the joint effort of Kaiser-Frazier corporation discontinued the car named for it’s founder, Henry J. Kaiser.
But then a few years later, guys started dropping V-8 engines into the Henry J, and all of a sudden the car had a look to it that made it cool. It was small enough to be lighter than it’s competitors, but big enough to transplant whatever V-8 could be thrown at it. The Henry J you see here, is owned by Ted Dzus, of Dzus Fasteners fame, and it’s powered by a unique engine that never spent time between the rails of a Henry J in the 1950s.
Opting for a blown HEMI, this 1951 Henry J sports a Vortech V-4 X Supercharger mounted to the 528 cubic inch Mopar mill. Handling the fuel injection duties, a pair of FAST throttle bodies feeds the dual intake plenums. Stopping power is done via 4-wheel disc brakes sitting behind a set of Weld Racing RT-S wheels.
Inside the car, a set of Auto Meter gauges from their Custom Shop keep the driver aware of the engine’s vitals, and a custom build cage is almost invisible, protecting the occupants, just in case. The Henry J that Dzus calls “Rollin A J”, is one example of what the car could have been; while many of them are seen on the dragstrip, this driver looks equally at home on the streets.
Do you think V-8 power would have kept the Henry J alive just a little while longer?