Who knows where or how the trend started, but the idea of photographing hot women with hot cars has been around a long time. The funny thing is, we've never observed the type of dream scenes depicted in these photos in real life, although one possible precursor could easily have been some forlorn girlfriend who simply wanted attention from her hot roddin' man. (The girl is always standing in front of the car as if saying, "If you wanna get to your car, you gotta go through me, buddy!")

Hot rodders are pretty single minded in their pursuit of performance, and that dedication and love of machinery seems to be only overshadowed by an infatuation with the opposite gender-at least that seems to be the case with the male motorheads. You could argue that from an evolutionary standpoint, the hot car on the boulevard is the ultimate symbol of virility. Build the car-get the girl. It's the stuff of countless pulp novels from the '50s and '60s.

Classically speaking, having the hot car without the girl is kind of a hollow victory, although that's not strictly the case. We like to think building and driving hot steel is its own reward, but let's be honest, isn't it more fun having someone special to share it with-or at least dreaming about having someone to share it with? We'll admit that bikini-clad girls with hot rods are pretty far removed from the reality, but it's part of the enduring fantasy and the folklore of the hobby-and we don't want to mess with a time-honored tradition.

Last year, we put the call out for readers to submit their best car photos for our photo contest (featured in the Jan. '11 issue). At the same time we asked the ladies if they wouldn't mind getting in on the picture for a separate story devoted to them and their rides-or the rides of their friends and relatives. Here's what they sent us!

Mark Bates • Neenah, WI
Jarrod Bates can't wait until his father, Mark, finds another project car-then he can have this swell '64 Chevelle to tool around with his girlfriend, Danielle. Mark says his father got this car and a four-door parts car 10 years ago for $1,500, and after some horse trading, got a healthy 454 big-block and Turbo 400 to go inside. Even after bodywork and paint, Mark has just $7,500 in this sweet first-year Chevelle.

Engine: 454ci big-block Chevy
Cylinder heads: factory cast iron
Camshaft: factory
Intake: Edelbrock Performer
Transmission: Turbo 400
Rearend: factory 10-bolt
Front suspension: factory
Front brakes: stock drums
Rear suspension: factory
Rear brakes: stock drums
Wheels: vintage Ansen, 14x7 front, 15x7 rear
Tires: 195/75R14 front, 225/75R15 rear
Years owned: 10
Invested: $7,500

Name: Danielle Von Neupert • Age: 23 • Hometown: Neenah, WI

1955 CHEVY 210 SEDAN
Richard Arbiso • Upland, CA
Longtime car nut Richard Arbiso and his wife, Deborah, almost didn't get to send in photos of their '55 Chevy. Turns out, in their quest to find the ultimate photo shoot location they got a little carried away and wandered onto the grounds of a state prison! Unbeknownst to them, they were giving the inmates and guards quite a show, and about an hour into the affair, they were discovered and interrogated by prison officials. Fortunately, Deborah sweet talked the guards into letting them keep their photos!

Engine: 327ci small-block Chevy
Cylinder heads: 2.02 fuelie cast-iron
Camshaft: Summit hydraulic
Intake: Edelbrock dual-quad Endurashine
Carbs: 500-cfm Edelbrock
Transmission: Super T10
Rearend: 9-inch Ford with 3.50 gears
Front suspension: stock, new bushings
Front brakes: factory disc upgrade
Rear suspension: factory leaf spring, Lakewood traction bars
Rear brakes: stock Ford drums
Wheels: Weld Drag-Lite
Tires: Mickey Thompson 28x7.5-LT15, front; 28x10.5-15LT, rear
Horsepower: approximately 400 hp
Years owned: 15
Invested: $26,000

Name: Deborah Arbiso • Age: 52 • Hometown: Upland, CA

Timothy A. Flanary • Frederick, MD
It didn't take long for 40-year-old Tim Flanary to figure out that his '10 Camaro SS had to be the baddest alpha dog around. Within days of getting it in June 2009, he was ripping into his new Chevy with all the popular hop-up mods, including a big cam, better-flowing exhaust, steeper gears, beefy driveline parts, sticky Nitto drag radials, and an intercooled blower kit. It's no wonder this pack leader can't keep the girls off his car!

Engine: 6.2L LS3
Cylinder heads: factory LS3
Camshaft: COMP Cams hydraulic roller, .598-inch lift, 269 degrees duration
Induction: Edelbrock E-Force supercharger
Exhaust: ARH headers, Corsa cat-back
Transmission: six-speed manual
Rearend: factory housing, Richmond 3.70 gears, Hendrix Engineering axles
Chassis: BMR driveshaft loop and subframe connectors
Front suspension: factory, KW coilovers
Front brakes: stock
Rear suspension: factory, KW coilovers
Rear brakes: stock
Wheels: Foose Legends
Tires: Nitto NT 555 245/35R20 front, Nitto NT555R 305/40R20 rear
Horsepower: 620 rear-wheel horsepower
Best dragstrip e.t.: 11.23 at 120 mph
Years owned: 1
Invested: $55,000

Name: Alyssa Eshleman • Age: 19 • Hometown: Frederick, MD

John Harris • Chesnee, SC
John Harris writes of his '70 Challenger T/A: "Turns out, it was the best investment I ever made. The car has really appreciated in value since 1998." Given that John only paid $16,000 for it then (in just the shape you see it here), we'd say that's the understatement of the year. The highly optioned all-original T/A is a family favorite, but John says his wife, Jeanna, just got him a '70 'Cuda for their 15th anniversary. Looks like Jeanna is looking for a little more seat time in the T/A!

Engine: Dodge 340ci T/A block
Cylinder heads: factory 340 T/A castings
Camshaft: factory
Intake: factory Edelbrock aluminum six-pack
Carb: factory six-pack
Transmission: A-833 four-speed
Rearend: 83/4-inch Sure-Grip with 3.91 gears
Front suspension: factory (Rallye suspension on T/As)
Front brakes: stock discs
Rear suspension: stock leaf spring with pinion snubber
Rear brakes: stock drums
Wheels: 15x7 slotted Rallyes
Tires: BFGoodrich 245/60R15
Horsepower: 350 hp
Years owned: 12
Invested: $16,500

Name: Jeanna Harris • Age: 38 • Hometown: Chesnee, SC