Murray Pfaff

See Murray in person on August 18 at the Kustoms at the AHF event! Click here to purchase tickets.

Hot-rod and custom-car designer Murray Pfaff has created designs for more than 400 cars since starting Pfaff Designs, based in Royal Oak, Mich. He has generated designs for a wide variety of car-collector friends and well-placed clients from Miami to Toronto, and from North Carolina to Los Angeles. In fact, the Pfaff Designs client list reads like a Who’s-Who of the hot-rodding industry: he’s produced design projects for Fuller Moto, Boyd Coddington, Creative Rod & Custom, Deco Rides, Pro Rides, Detroit Speed & Engineering, Optima Batteries, Schwartz Extreme Performance, Sammy Hagar, Tim Tebow, Toby Keith, Richard Petty, Rusty Wallace, Rad Rides by Troy, Stielow Engineering and Weaver Customs.

Pfaff’s design projects have ranged from concepts to road machines to show cars. And his eye for design has involved more than just cars – everything from a 140-mph speedboats to a jet-powered VW. All in all, Pfaff Designs is known mainly for its cars: so far, more than 40 of them have been featured at the “Super Bowl” of hot-rodding – the SEMA show in Las Vegas – and nine have been designed for Hot Rod Magazine builds alone.

In addition to being a regular contributor to Hot Rod, Pfaff’s spectacular designs also have been featured in other automotive publications, including Car Craft, Popular HotRodding, Mustang Monthly, Muscle Mustangs & Fast Fords, Ford Builder, Corvette Fever, Rod & Custom, MC2 MINI, Mopar Muscle, Mopar Action, Mopar Collectors Guide, Classic Trucks, Truckin’, Diesel Power, 8-Lug and Petersen’s 4×4.

Outside of the print media, Pfaff’s car passion has also been chronicled on Caffeine & Octane, V-8 TV, Two Guys Garage, Dream Car Garage, Hot Rod TV, as well as Spikes Powerblock. Hot Rod TV actually documented an annual event that has earned itself the reputation of being one of Detroit’s craziest Woodward Dream Cruise parties: Pfaff’s own “Backyard Bash,” which usually includes a car that implodes or ignites.

In his spare time, Murray can be found in the garage behind his studio building his own hot rods, including a 1956 Cadillac Custom Lead Sled known as “FireMaker,” a 2002 MINI “Alter-Ego,” a supercharged Dodge Ram “Draggin’ Wagon,” and “Squeeze Box” – a neo-classic pit bike.

Pfaff is probably best known for a two-seat runabout called “The Imperial Speedster” that he designed, built, and owns. Starting with a 19-foot 1959 Imperial, Murray shortened it 4’3”, narrowed it 8”, and sectioned it 3,” creating the hot rod concept car that Chrysler never built. It won Darryl Starbird’s “Go for the Gold” award and has been featured in the pages of Hot Rod Magazine and at the Detroit Autorama, Eyes on Design Concours, Playboy Mansion, and the SEMA Show in Las Vegas.

Murray is originally from Northern New York and studied Industrial Design at Syracuse University where he received his Bachelor’s degree.

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