It is neither a Mercury Grand Marquis nor a DeSoto, but perhaps it could be considered a kind of royalty. Furniture maker Steve Heller wanted to build a car of his own design, and possessed of a love of Fifties car details, he swiped the things he liked and built what he calls the "Marquis de Soto." It can also be called the New York Times Collectible Car of the Year.
The Marquis is based on a 1998 Mercury Grand Marquis. The Marquis' wings have been poached from the rear of a 1957 DeSoto, along with 1959 Cadillac taillights, the front fenders and lights from a 1958 Lincoln, 1955 Cadillac bumpers, a 1965 Buick Skylark hood, chrome from a 1957 Buick, and a grille glommed built from two 1957 Corvette pieces.
Heller spent 20 years collecting all the parts – he makes furniture using vintage car doodads – and spent four months building the car in back of his furniture shop. We dig it... but we dig it even more when it was just wearing primer. It has The Riddler written all over it. For more on the Marquis DeSoto, you can watch a great Heller-narrated slideshow or check out the gallery of photos below. Hat tip to Avinash