‘Home Improvement’ Star Tim Allen Kept This Big-Ticket Souvenir From the Classic Sitcom

by Craig Garrett

Tim Allen aka Tim “The Tool Man” Taylor kept perhaps the ultimate prop from his classic 90s comedy series Home Improvement. Younger audiences know Tim Allen as the voice of Buzz Lightyear in the Toy Story franchise. Others likely know Allen for his more recent sitcom Last Man Standing. Allen has also been extremely successful in the world of film, with hits like The Santa Clause trilogy, Wild Hogs and cult classic Galaxy Quest. However, those of us around in the 90s were likely introduced to Allen as the lead of powerhouse comedy Home Improvement.

Home Improvement ran for a whopping eight seasons from 1991 to 1999. Enormously popular, Allen commanded as much a million dollars an episode. The show was inspired in part by Tim Allen’s early stand-up routine, which was highlighted by caveman-like grunting. Home Improvement followed the adventures of the host of a home makeover show called Tool Time. The comedic foil on Tool Time was Taylor’s deadpan cohost, Al Borland (Richard Karn). Much of the show’s comedy was centered around cars, hardware and DIY projects… normally going wrong. Home Improvement also featured Taylor’s home life. Tim Allen’s character was the father of three troublesome boys, Brad (Zachery Ty Bryan), Randy (Jonathan Taylor Thomas), and Mark (Taran Noah Smith). Rounding out the cast was Allen’s co-lead, Patricia Richardson as his sardonic wife, Jill.

Tool Time featured a countless amount of gadgets, heavy equipment and the like during its run, but one item in particular caught Allen’s eye. Tim kept the 1933 Ford Roadster featured in several episodes of the series. Perhaps the most infamous appearance of the Roadster is in the season 3 finale, “The Great Race II”. This episode features The Tool Man facing off against his nemesis, DIY guru Bob Vila. The climax of the episode involves a hot rod race between the rivals, with Tim Allen driving the Roadster.

Purists might balk at the heavy modifications the 33′ Ford Roadster has undertaken. The hot rod was re-built on set and modified whenever shooting required it. Because of these modifications, the car is obviously not wholly original. Perhaps the most egregious modification is plopping a Chevy 350-cubic-inch V8 engine into the classic Ford. Tim Allen has amassed an impressive car collection, to include a 1965 Shelby Cobra S/C. Regardless, his 33′ Ford Roadster is definitely one of a kind. Indeed, Allen no doubt has the means to restore the 33′ Ford Roadster to its original specifications. It’s likely that the comedian wants it to remain untouched as an artifact to his time of Home Improvement.