Tommy Ivo

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Tommy Ivo's 1952 Buick Super. This was Tommy's first car, and he bought it when he was 16 years old.
Tommy Ivo's 1925 Ford Model T-Bucket. Tommy began building the car after seeing Norm Grabowski's 1922 Ford Model T-Bucket. He asked Norm if he would let him take some measurements off his car. Norm told him to fuck off, so Ivo took action on his own, and snuck into Grabowski’s garage so he could take all the critical measurements necessary to build his own version. The build was completed in 1956.
Phil Cartozian's 1927 Ford Model T Roadster of Sherman Oaks, California. Tommy built then engine in Phil's roadster.
Tommy on tour! Saturday, July 16, 1960 Tommy made an appearance with his dual engine 170 m.p.h. car at the Concord Drag-O-Way in Concord, North Carolina. This is an old poster that Fred Thomas came across in a secondhand shop in North Carolina around 2000. He shared the poster with Tommy, who could confirm that it, in fact, was one of his old flyers.
A photo of Tommy Ivo's Showboat taken at Island Dragway in the early 1960s. Photo from The Greg Palen Photo Collection.
Tommy on top of one of his haulers. Photo courtesy of Just a Car Guy.

Tommy Ivo is a famous Hollywood actor, racer, and builder. He is also known as "TV Tommy," and has appeared in more than 200 TV shows.

Moving to Burbank

Tommy was born in Denver, Colorado in 1936. His mother had him tap dance from the time he could walk, and he enjoyed great success in local talent shows. The cold weather caused his mother, who had sever arthritis, to move to Burbank, California.[1]

Mechanical Interest

As a kid, Ivo was interested in anything mechanical in addition to the tap dancing. He disassembled his parents' clocks and watches and put them together again. He took apart his bicycle and built aviaries and clubhouses in his backyard.[1]

TV and Movie Career

Tommy was soon pushed deeper into showbiz and at age seven entertaining at a variety of talent shows all over the Los Angeles area, where he got a part in a movie called Earl Carrol’s Vanities. Like many a movie star story, a producer spotted Tommy and he was picked for his first movie—the first of more than 100 which included "Tarzan" and the legendary "Rebel Without a Cause" with James Dean.[2] Tommy went on to appear in more than 200 TV shows, including a recurring role on the “Donna Reed Show” as well as a staring part on the “Margie” TV series.

First Car

By the time he was 16, Tommy had stashed enough money to buy a brand new 1952 Buick Super two-door hardtop.[2] After collecting a bunch of car brochures, Tommy and his girlfriend Nancy, decided that the Buick looked best, so he bought a bright-red Super for $3,000 while on a family vacation in Denver in the late summer of 1952.[1]

Road Kings of Burbank

Tommy was a member of the Road Kings of Burbank car club.

Tommy Ivo's Cars

Tommy Ivo's 1925 Ford Model T-Bucket
Tommy Ivo's 1952 Buick Super

Cars Featuring Engines Built by Tommy Ivo

Phil Cartozian's 1927 Ford Model T Roadster



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