Classic Cars Get Restored on New Series ‘Last Chance Garage’

Last Chance Garage on Motortrend, 1933 Ford Roadster
1933 Ford Roaster, Credit MotorTrend

Cars have been at the center of Tony D’Antonio’s life since he was a kid. The Philadelphia-raised mechanic and car restoration expert was a sponge as a child soaking up everything from his father, who ran an automotive repair shop, and his grandfather, who was into restoring cars and was a member of an old guys’ lunch club called the Road Runners.

“Cars have been in my life pretty much my whole life. I come from a very car popular family. My grandfather was a mechanic in the military and then he went on to be in the trades. My dad’s been a mechanic his entire life. My father got into restoring cars when he was, I think 14 or 13 years old. So growing up my dad ran an automotive repair shop,” Tony shares. “I was really little when my grandfather restored a 1930 Model A, but my grandfather drove everywhere in that 1930 Model A and he took me with him.” His grandfather passed away when Tony was just 17, but that passion his grandfather sparked lives on today.

Last Chance Garage, MotorTrend, Tony D’Antonio

© 2023 Warner Bros. Discovery, Inc.

Now Tony owns D’Antonio Automotive, and his garage and staff are the subjects of the new MotorTrend series Last Chance Garage (Wednesdays, beginning March 20 at 10pmET), where Tony and his crew take viewers through botched restoration jobs (showing all the nitty-gritty details on these sloppy jobs) and the unique stories behind each car and owner as they transform the vehicle to its intended state.

Last Chance Garage, Bullitt Mustang,

© 2023 Warner Bros. Discovery, Inc.

“People come to me to have their vehicle rebuilt — to chase the memories, the best moments of their lives. I’m helping them relive the happiest moments of their lives through a vehicle,” Tony says. The show is basically Botched for cars. “[Like the plastic surgery series,] we go in and make sure that everything works perfectly, the way it should have worked the first time. It’s just sad to know that I was able to build a show and business almost entirely based on fixing botched cars. Insanity.”

In between a lot of underbody car rot and the technicalities on getting things fixed is a fun chemistry among the crew. Tony’s father is also a big part of the show — he’s a rarity in the car world having never sold his original car (a 1969 Camaro SS) — but don’t expect any type of explosive fighting between these two (a la American Chopper). “I’m not going to fight my dad on camera. That’s just not going to happen. I’m not going to pick up a chair and throw it across the room. That’s not what we do,” Tony adds. “I’m 34 and my dad will still kick my butt. What you guys see on camera is exactly who we are.” A reality-based show without yelling? Now that’s something we can get revved up about.

The upcoming episode schedule for Last Chance Garage is as follows:

Wednesday, March 20:  A father and son discover a roadside ’92 Jeep Wrangler and bring it to Tony Jr. in hopes of restoring it rather than junking it. A grandson with a ’56 Firedome that has been in his family hopes Tony Jr. can fix the car for future generations.

Wednesday, March 27: A 1969 Chevy Nova comes into the shop hoping to have a second life as a street-legal car; also, a 1933 Ford Cabriolet that’s been sitting in a chicken coop for the last 60 years makes a comeback.

Wednesday, April 3: Tony Jr. attempts to merge components from two Hudsons to breathe new life into an old flame. Despite a list of issues, a ’68 Chevrolet Chevelle is transformed by Tony Jr. and his team, making it shine and capture attention once more.

Wednesday, April 10: Tony travels to Nashville, Tennessee, to find out why a 2021 Jeep 6×6 is not running the way it was built. While there, he finds a ’67 Mustang in need of engine work to reclaim its dominance on the road.

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April 2018

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