As a nod to his working-class Indian heritage, Hetain Patel chose a squatting pose for the Fiesta Transformer, moving the engine to the rear as a counterbalance. Hetain Patel

Hetain Patel’s sculpture is an ode to two old loves: his first ride—a 1988 Ford Fiesta—and the childhood toys known as Transformers. Patel enlisted his father, Pravin, who converts cars into hearses and limos, to help him slice the automobile into pieces and reassemble them as a bespoke robot. Unlike the fictional automatons that inspired him, Patel’s Fiesta Transformer does not move or fight. “The pose is important,” he says. “It’s not a warrior. It’s an old crappy car.”

The Build

Time: 3 months
Cost: About $16,000

This article originally appeared in the February 2014 issue of Popular Science.