Syfy is tapping into the classic grindhouse movie tradition with Blood Drive, which has received a 13-episode Image (2) syfylogo1__140402211700-275x148.jpg for post 708663straight-to-series order. The drama, from Universal Cable Prods. and executive producers John Hlavin (Underworld: Awakening) and David Straiton (Bates Motel), who will also direct, is described as a high-octane, over-the-top scripted series set in a near-apocalyptic future that centers around LA’s last good cop who is forced to join a twisted, gory cross-country death race — with cars powered by blood and a dangerous femme fatale partner who sees people as fuel.

James Roland wrote the pilot under Hlavin’s supervision and will serve as supervising producer. Fredrik Malmberg (Conan The Barbarian) and Mark Wheeler will serve as producers.

“This highly stylized roller coaster ride is a throwback to 1970s grindhouse cinema,” said Syfy president Dave Howe. Added UCP president Jeff Wachtel, “The combination of gritty action and dark humor can push the envelope in some fun and unexpected ways.”

Syfy has been ramping up its series slate in the past year or so, often employing the straight-to-series model, including for upcoming alien drama Hunters, also from UCP as well as studio-based producer Gale Anne Hurd, and space opera The Espanse, from Alcon.

In addition to Blood Drive, Hlavin also has pilot Shooter, based on the Mark Wahlberg movie, at USA and UCP.