The Very Best Car Restoration Shows on TV

Check out our list of the maddest, baddest and raddest car restoration programmes on TV, from junk to profit, custom classics or breathing life back into the very best and most expensive cars in the world, this run down of the top car restoration shows has got you covered.

Motoring Fast Facts Petrolhead Zone
29 January 2021

If you’re looking for the best car restoration shows on TV, you are most definitely in the right place. Watch the maddest, baddest and raddest petrolheads go from the sublime to the ridiculous and back again as they take high-octane restos from the brink of oblivion to best in class!

From the car restoration programmes where the teams take hunks of junk and transform them into concourse kings to some of the very best and most expensive cars in the world, with our incredible classic car restoration TV shows we’ve got you covered, whatever your petrol preference!

Junkyard Empire

Father-and-son team Bobby and Andy Cohen see automotive gold everywhere they look and they are forever hustling for a deal but it’s their feuds and fights that have made Junkyard Empire into one of the ‘must watch’ car restoration programmes on TV!

Chilled out dad Bobby is a five-decade veteran of the resto world who likes to do things his way and son Andy is an in-your-face kinda guy but despite their teasing, taunting and tantrums, they have one thing in common – the ability to turn totalled wrecks into some seriously wicked customs, including an ice-cream truck from a Chrysler PT Cruiser and a smashed-up K9 explosives police wagon into a camo-wrapped hunting truck!

The best car restoration shows on TV are a mix of super-cool customs, supremely-talented mechanics and hothead personalities and Junkyard Empire most definitely ticks all three boxes!

Junkyard Empire: Andy built an empire out of a junkyard, but when business booms he risks losing his grip. Plus, problems with his race-car threaten to turn into a headache.

Salvage Hunters: Classic Cars

Drew Pritchard, Overlord of Salvageland and Paul ‘petrol in his veins’ Cowland have teamed up to bring you one of the most innovative car restoration shows on TV.

Driven by a love of design, and dealing with everything from iconic classic cars to hidden gems, Salvage Hunters supremo Drew is a modern-day treasure hunter focused on design and aesthetics while super-tall Paul, best known for his role on Turbo Pickers, is all about the numbers. Do they always see eye to eye? No, but that’s the fun of one of TV’s best car restoration programmes featuring the some of the world’s most classic cars.

Find out what Drew and Paul do with a mouse-infested Porsche 928, watch them bicker over the look of a classic 80s Toyota MR2 and see what extraordinary engine they squeeze into a classic Ford Cortina GT in Salvage Hunters: Classic Cars, one of the best car restorations shows on TV.

If you’re a classically-trained petrolhead, this is one auto restoration TV show you can’t miss!

Salvage Hunters: Classic Cars: Salvage aficionado, Drew Pritchard teams up with Turbo Pickers' Paul Cowland for an epic motoring mission. They scour the UK, buying, restoring and selling classic cars.

Overhaulin’

One of the original and best car restoration  and custom car tv programmes on Discovery, Overhaulin’ features superstar designer Chip Foose and his team of metal magicians called the A-Team looking for worthy ‘marks’ to have their old, tired cars overhauled and brought back to life!

Military veterans, community heroes, survivors, emergency service personnel and amazing people from all walks of life are the unwitting stars whose cars get turned from pathetic clunkers to priceless custom kings in this top-of-the-range car restoration programme, including the spectacular VW Beetle featured in the clip above.

These guys work insanely hard to create life-changing surprises for those who most deserve it.

Overhaulin’ Chronicles Vol. 1: A team of talented mechanics and designers work hard to create a life-changing surprise for unsuspecting vehicle owners.

Iron Resurrection

Ruined roadsters or mangled motorbikes, Texas mechanic Joe Martin, a former winner of the Great Biker Build-Off, his wife Amanda and best buddy Jayson ‘Shag’ Arrington scour the backwood sheds, car lots and vast Texas wilderness for two and four-wheeled wrecks in one of the most exciting car restoration shows on TV. They’re pickers, they’re fast-mouth wheeler dealers and they’re awesome fabricators and the results speak for themselves.

The turbo-charged team back at Martin Bros Customs in Johnson City, Texas raise the dead and transform them into the hottest of hot rods and coolest, craziest choppers and once they’re done, Shag, dubbed ‘the fastest mouth in the south’ uses his considerable charm to get the very best deals for their resuscitated racers.

Iron Resurrection is one of the best car restoration shows on TV and does exactly what it says on the tin!

Iron Resurrection: Joe Martin brings new life to old iron at his shop Joe Martin Customs. Working with his wife Amanda, and best friend Shag, this custom shop oversees every phase of restoration from design, fabrication and mechanicals, to the final paint job.

Wheeler Dealers

This British cult classic features old-school car dealer Mike Brewer and his talented mechanics Edd China and Ant Anstead as they bring you the classic car restoration TV show that shows off some proper good motors, from wartime VWs and rare BMWs to fantastic Thunderbirds from the 50s and the GTi icons of the 80s – and almost literally every other car you can think of from the best looking cars in the world to the long forgotten automotive runarounds!

Mike, Edd and Ant have put some absolute pearls back on the road and at the same time hope to turn a tidy little profit thank you very much. In one of the most enduring car restoration TV shows on Discovery, Mike and his guys save the classics from the crusher and put a few pounds (or dollars) in the pocket!

Wheeler Dealers: Experienced car dealer, Mike Brewer, is joined by multi-talented mechanic, Ant Anstead, in a monumental motoring mission: to find and restore iconic cars to later sell for a profit at their LA-based shop. In the series, Mike has the challenging jo...

Chasing Classic Cars

Wayne Carini is a legendary classic car collector, restorer, Ferrari expert and all round car connoisseur as well as being the star of Chasing Classic Cars, one of the most fascinating classic car restoration TV shows. Whether one of the best known cars of the 1920s or a decade closer to home, Wayne’s world takes you into the elite and very secretive club of high-end classic car dealing as he trawls America on the hunt for some of the best, forgotten and unique vehicles to buy, restore and sell.

You won’t find insane modders, hipster beards or neck tattoos here but you will find the world’s first ‘carchaeologist’ sharing his unrivalled passion for classic motors and the stories that go with them as well as the exciting auction finales, including the sale of this stunning 1957 Mercedes 300SL Gullwing.

If you love the classics, spend some time with Wayne Chasing Classic Cars, one of the all-time classic car restoration TV shows.

Chasing Classic Cars: Ferrari expert and master car restorer, Wayne Carini, finds, buys, restores and sells some of the finest and most unique vehicles ever manufactured.

Shed And Buried

Bike guru Henry Cole, star of World’s Greatest Motorcycle Rides has teamed up with his old pal and restorer Sam ‘The Engine Whisperer’ Lovegrove for a true British classic car restoration TV show.

All over the British Isles there are motorcycles and all sort of mechanical and motoring memorabilia and curios that have been shed and buried for years and our determined duo have made it their mission to scour the nation’s sheds, outhouses, barns and lock-ups to restore the abandoned automotive gems they find.

Take a look at some of Henry and Sam’s most amazing restorations, including a 1920s petrol pump refurb and a rebuild of a stunning 1988 Excelsior motorbike.

Shed And Buried: Presenter Henry Cole and motorcycle restorer Sam Lovegrove hit the road to find, buy and make a profit from the UK's abandoned automotive gems.

Wreck Rescue

If you’re looking for an authentic classic car restoration TV show, look no further than Wreck Rescue for real projects, real people, real deadlines and real drama!

Restoring a rust bucket is much more of a challenge than most people think so Mark Evans, perhaps the world’s most obsessive amateur machine restorer, has closed the doors of his own workshop to scour the country looking for resto enthusiasts who need a little help to realise their driving dreams!

From a rusty shell of a 1959 Mk 1 Frog Eye Sprite; a father and son team who want to restore their 1972 Ford Capri to take part in a classic motorsport event and a furniture company boss who bought his dream 1959 Elva 100 in tiny pieces only to realise that not all the bits he bought belong to the same car, Mark Evans has his work cut out in one of the best and most fascinating car restoration TV shows on Discovery.

Wreck Rescue: Mark Evans helps motivate amateur car restorers who are committed to finishing their garage projects within fixed deadlines.

FantomWorks

Former Specials Forces soldier Dan Short set up FantomWorks in Norfolk, Virginia in 2006 and while he runs his shop with military precision, on this classic car restoration TV show, it seems that no build goes entirely according to plan…

From a 1926 Ford Model T to a hardcore ’68 Mustang convertible and everything in between, Dan and his team have the passion and mechanical know-how to get these broken-down rides out of the garage and onto the streets, but what makes FantomWorks one of the best auto restoration TV shows is the tense stand-offs, arguments, close calls and deadline-busting all-nighters, including this ’63 Corvette resto that cost more than the owner’s wedding, a fact not lost on his wife…!

FantomWorks is one of the most popular car restoration TV shows on Discovery and if you’ve seen it, it’s easy to see why.

FantomWorks: Dan Short and the team at FantomWorks have a unique passion few people possess for getting neglected cars out of the garage and back onto the roads.

Wrecks to Riches

Consumer champion Dom Littlewood teams up with Amanda Stretton and Vicki Butler-Henderson, two of Britain’s best racing drivers and car journalists to bring you Wrecks To Riches, a car restoration show where they scour the nation’s salvage yards for write-off wrecks they can turn into – you’ve guessed it – rich returns and future classic cars!

The investments are high so the returns need to be higher – can their automotive awareness keep them ahead of the game? If not, this high-stakes game of risk and reward means that all losses come out of their own pockets…!

From getting a 17-year-old on the road for the first time to painstakingly getting a bits-and-pieces sports car back in the fast lane, the Wrecks to Riches crew bring you a car restoration show like no other!

Wrecks to Riches: Mechanics scour salvage yards for vehicles they can sell for a profit. This crafty team must transform these scruffy wrecks into stunning vintage cars.

Turbo Pickers

‘Tall’ Paul Cowland and master mechanic Dave Southall are Turbo Pickers, one of the best loved car restoration shows on TV and they not only know exactly what to look for when buying a second hand car but also have the knack of turning wrecks into runners and clapped-out cars into cool collectibles.

These guys know how to make fast money from flipping as they scour the nation’s junkyards, lock-ups and backwater sheds for the unloved and forgotten, including this amazing 1966 Triumph Herald with under 30,000 miles on the clock the owner bought from new for £700!

From an ancient Citroen H-Van to a unique graveyard of Jaguars seemingly beyond salvation, Turbo Pickers is one of those car restoration programmes where you can smell the petrol and feel the passion!

Turbo Pickers: Hidden in a dusty garage is the motoring equivalent of the Ark. Paul Cowland and Dave Southall uncover a real slice of motoring history with a 1966 Triumph Herald.

Fast ‘n’ Loud

‘Bottom line, if we’re gonna have fun, it better have a motor’ so says Richard Rawlings, the legendary proprietor of Dallas-based Gas Monkey Garage and star of Fast ‘n’ Loud, one of the most popular car restoration programmes on TV!

Rawlings and the Gas Monkey crew find vintage vehicles in all sorts of places – overgrown fields, abandoned car lots, broken-down barns and small-town swap meets – and they all have one thing in common – they are screaming to be brought back to life.

Long hours, intricate builds and impossible deadlines have kept these hardcore gas monkeys on their toes for 16 seasons of one of the best auto restoration TV shows but whatever awesome automobiles they end up with, you know for sure they’re gonna be fast ‘n’ loud!

Fast N’ Loud: Motoring experts Richard Rawlings and Aaron Kaufman tour America, looking for old and abandoned cars that they can restore to glory in their garage in Dallas.

Garage Squad

Kingster, Cy, Joe, Cristy, Bruno and Ronnie are the Garage Squad and they’re on a mission to help ordinary people with their extraordinary projects. How many times have you said ‘I’ll start next weekend’ on the rust bucket that’s been sitting in your garage for years? That’s where the Garage Squad comes in!

These guys take dream projects from DIY to done and it’s definitely not a case of the owner sitting back and getting the coffees in, no way. On one of the best car restoration shows on TV, everyone gets their hands dirty!

From a stocky Vietnam-era jeep to a stunning ‘63 Porsche 356 (and plenty in between), the guys travel all over the US looking for plucky projects to transform into petrol perfection!

Garage Squad: Lucky motor-lovers from across America get the chance to have their neglected project vehicles finally completed.

Bad Chad Customs

Chad Hiltz is the star of Bad Chad Customs but this is no ordinary car restoration show. He runs the Hiltz Auto Company from a small, isolated workshop in rural Nova Scotia, Canada and he is a master of one-of-a-kind creations.

Part MacGyver, part Willy Wonka, if he can imagine it, he can build it. With small budgets, basic tools and scrap from the junkyard (including kitchen cabinets, school lockers and parts from an old boat), he creates some of the most mind-blowing creations including this badass dump truck he created from a 1930s Oldsmobile!

Get inside the mad mind of Bad Chad and his unconventional team for one of the most exciting car restoration shows on Discovery, the guy that could build a Rolls-Royce from a roller blind!

Bad Chad Customs: Chad Hiltz is the boss of builds. With his trusty Green Goblin Customs team, he takes scraps of metal from the junkyard and turns them into award-winning cars.

G.A.S Extreme Customs

The legendary custom auto shop founded in 1946 by Frank Galpin is home to one of the best classic car restoration TV shows on the box. Inside Galpin Auto Sports (GAS for short) in Van Nuys, California, you’ll find legendary petrolheads Beau Boeckmann, Michael ‘Mad Mike’ Martin and Dave Shuten working on all sorts of bonkers builds, from historic restorations to futuristic creations!

Take a raucous ride with the GAS Extreme Customs guys as they tell the incredible stories of some of the most famous – and forgotten – cars of the last hundred years, including the untold story of automotive demi-god Carroll Shelby’s secret De Tomaso Pantera.

Watch one of the best car restorations TV shows on Discovery as the guys from Van Nuys take on a monumental mission to save automotive history and rescue cars from oblivion.

G.A.S. Extreme Customs: At Galpin Auto Sports, one of America's most premiere custom car shops, the team specialise in historic restorations, futuristic builds and tricking out cars of all kinds.

Misfit Garage

There isn’t a better name for one of the best TV car restoration shows than Misfit Garage. A Fast ‘n’ Loud spin-off, it features former Gas Monkeys Tom Smith and Jordan Butler who teamed up with mechanics Thomas Weeks and Scot McMillan to form Fired Up Garage.

Whether the guys were fired or forced off the road is a matter for the keyboard warriors to debate, but what is for sure is that these guys are serious petrolheads and a worthy rival for Gas Monkey Garage.

You can check out how competitive they are in the clip above when they staged the Gas Monkey Games, which included events such as the tug of war, the tyre discus and the donut competition where Misfit Tom Smith took it to a whole new level!

Misfits they may be but they’ll tackle anything with a motor, from a classic British 1961 Morris Minor to an all-American 1959 Chevy El Camino.

Misfit Garage:

Speed is the New Black

‘Once you catch the car bug it’s hard to turn back’ so says self-styled speed king Noah Alexander. He’s the star of Speed is the New Black, one of the coolest auto restoration TV shows out there.

From his super-slick Classic Car Studio in St Louis, Missouri, the team create some incredible and unique restos and custom builds for people who only deal in loud, fast and furious rides.

From turning grandpa’s old 1962 Chrysler 300 grocery getter into a Viper-powered hot rod to a sedate 1957 Chevy Nomad that tears up the track, Speed is the New Black is one of the best car restoration shows on Discovery!

Speed Is The New Black: At the elite automotive shop Classic Car Studio, Noah Alexander and his team specialise in full restorations and custom builds for clients who want their rides fast and furious.

Texas Metal

Specialising in one-off custom cars and trucks, Bill Carlton and his team of designers and mechanics at Ekstensive Metal Works in Houston, Texas are the stars of Texas Metal, one of the most hardcore car restoration TV shows on Discovery.

Their walls are covered in awards, their customers are rowdy and demanding and their builds push the envelope of what’s possible, from muscle cars to monster trucks, including putting a huge Chevy engine in a 1940 Ford F-100 pick-up – what the client wants, the client gets!

Everything is big in the Lone Star State and after a quarter-century changing the custom car game, this car restoration show does it bigger and better than anyone else!

Texas Metal: Bill customises a brand new 2018 Yukon Denali by dropping it to the floor on 28x15 wheels, all while keeping the third-row seats for the client's family.

Twin Turbos

Brad and Doug DeBerti are Twin Turbos, a father-and-son team who have been building outrageously-styled custom cars and trucks for over two decades and they are the stars of one of Discovery’s best car restoration shows.

After a serious accident curtailed Brad’s dream of being a racing driver, he went into business with his dad, a career petrolhead who spent his life modding race cars and now mentors his son in the art of creating the coolest customs and fastest road cars on TV, including combining an ugly pick-up with a brand new Ford F-250 into an unbelievable transformer truck!

Custom car building isn’t just their hobby, it’s their life.

Twin Turbos: Brad DeBerti was a burgeoning motorsports star, winning his first two professional races. But after a serious accident, he and his dad, Doug, build custom cars and trucks.

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