Who doesn’t need a little help with all those daily chores? Mowing the lawn is the quintessential dreaded chore, especially when it comes to super huge lawns. Introducing the Ron Beer, the long-lost neglected cousin of the successful John Deere lawn tractor. You won’t see it on a showroom floor anytime soon, and it has little chance of making mom proud or securing a date for the night—but you have to admit that it’s slightly genius.
Is it a car? Yes. Is it a lawnmower? Yes. It’s a Ford Festiva-based lawnmower car, perhaps the greatest, most noble thing that’s ever happened to an old Festiva, especially one with its rear hatch hacked off so it looks like a super tiny truck.
The shirtless Daisy Dukes-wearing YouTuber Ginger Billy toutes the multitudinous advantages of his Ron Beer Ford Festiva lawnmower in his infomercial-like video on the subject, and his enthusiasm almost has us sold on this homebrew masterpiece that screams ‘Merican engine-ooity. He fires up the lawnmower’s Briggs and Stratton 600-cc engine through a set of center console-mounted switches. The whole mower deck assembly, strapped under the Festiva’s rear in place of wheels, whirls to life as he jokes that full power would lift the whole Festiva up like a hovercraft. Boy do we hope so.
Ride-on lawn mowers may have their advantages, but it’s hard to argue with the selling points of the Ron Beer. The roof protects occupants—that’s right, a buddy can ride along and join in on the shenanigans—from getting sunburned during the arduous task of mowing a field. The Ron Beer only takes one hand to drive and turn, meaning the other can hold a beverage (hence, um, the beer part). After all, it’s hard to drink a beer with no hands. Reclining seats allow for laid-back comfort. Radio entertainment and air conditioning elevate the mowing experience to pure luxury, though the general noise generated by the mower deck (amplified, seemingly, by the speaker-like concave structure left behind where the roof would be) might grind on you after a bit.
In any event, the Ford Festiva (sans mowing device) is not known for its performance prowess (most of the time). However, the Festiva Ron Beer lawnmower edition has what it takes to cut the high grass “like a Ginsu knife.” Thank its decent ground clearance (at least compared to typical lawn tractors) and probably the user’s utter lack of interest in protecting its front end from damage or the engine from overheating.
Get to work, Ron Beer Festiva. Thank you for your service.