TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (WIAT) — For many Alabama fans, the sight of a beat-up crimson and white coupe is familiar on the streets of Tuscaloosa on game day.
Tip Alexander, who owns the popular Copper Top bar in Tuscaloosa, bought the 1967 GMC Caballero about seven years ago. He told CBS42 News that he spotted the car in a MacDonald’s parking lot, and the seller didn’t want much money for it.
Alexander loved that it was a two-door car, with a pickup truck bed in the back.
“We’d use it for towing whatever supplies we needed to whatever event we had,” Alexander said.
Soon, the old car became the butt of jokes for Alexander and his staff.
“We just took it to another degree to kind of make it funny,” Alexander said.
Alexander let his employees paint on the car, removed the doors, created his own sunroof, and, at one point, tried to turn the car into an amphibious pontoon boat.
“It didn’t (work) because if you were to fall out of the door, the paddle wheel would chop you up that was attached to the back wheel,” Alexander said. “We decided not to go any further with it.”
The doorless “hooptie” has since become a game day novelty.
“It’s good to get a good reaction,” Alexander said. “People think it’s funny and stuff like that.”
Alexander has even taken the car to away games as far as College Station, TX. According to Alexander, the car caught fire three times on that trip, and he had to create makeshift doors out of sheet metal after a Mississippi police officer pulled him over.
Last month, Alexander sold the car, while getting ready to move to Georgia.
But, there was one stipulation in the sales contract: The new owner of the car must live in Tuscaloosa, as should the next owner of the car, should he decide to sell it.
“It’s better off in this town,” Alexander said.