This perimeter frame got some massaging to fit the late-model engine and transmission swap. The front crossmember was notched to clear the CTS-V LS oil pan, and the transmission crossmember was moved back and redrilled to accommodate the 4L80E. The team also boxed the rear frame section behind the axle and the control arm mounting points. The front got QA1 coilovers with 450-pound spings, a Hellwig 1.25-inch sway bar, and Jeep Grand Cherokee steering box with an ididit column. The rear suspension uses QA1 adjustable shocks, and a matching 1.125-inch Hellwig sway bar.
Wheels & Brakes
The high-tech replacements didn't stop at the engine and transmission. The front and rear brakes came from an '02 Camaro. The four-wheel disc conversion called for '70 Chevelle spindles and modification to a set of drum hubs. Rather than spending half the value of the vehicle on fancy custom billet wheels, they found a set of forged BMW M-Series 18x8 and 18x9.5 wheels that fit just right. Their do-everything tires are Michelin Pilot Sport AS Plus in 245/45R18 and 275/40R18 front to back. They work great but may need to be swapped for the dragstrip passes if they hope to get into the 9s.
There's nothing quite like factory paint; they just don't make it like they used to. This Lemonwood Yellow body is as it was out of the factory in the '60s. The engine bay however, was not. They stripped the firewall down, smoothed it, and replaced the factory heater box with one from a Nova for a better fit. They also modified the core support and inner fender for turbo accessory clearance, and fitted a 17-pound Braille battery into the fender.
Engine & Drivetrain
The totaled pickup on the donor list gave up its 6.0L LQ4 iron-blocked Gen III and 4L80E overdrive automatic. Other than crunched-up sheetmetal, this truck didn't have engine problems so an ultrabasic rebuild was performed. The factory rod bolts were swapped for ARP units, a suggestion made by one of his LS buddies. The rest of the rotating assembly was left alone. They junked the factory cam for a COMP hydraulic roller with 0.598/0.591-inch lift and 234/230 degrees duration at 0.050-inch lift on a 116 LSA. The rest of the valvetrain was upgraded to match with a COMP timing set, Lunati dual valvesprings, and Trick Flow pushrods. They popped the cylinder heads off to inspect the pistons and for a fresh set of LS9 multilayer gaskets and ARP head studs. The extra air provided by the turbo would need more room so they chose an Edelbrock ProFlo intake manifold with ProFlo fuel rails and a factory throttle body welded and ported by Justin. The Precision GT4276 turbo would need extra attention, especially with the use of E85. The big deal would be fuel delivery. A combination of AN-10 and -8 feed and return fuel lines with a MagnaFuel 4303 fuel pump and Aeromotive boost referenced regulator would supply the rich mix through 80-pound injectors. HP Tuners Pro 3 bar OS tuned by CJ Tunes of St. Paul, Minnesota, make the stock truck PCM control the engine and transmission. The extra deep truck oil pan was swapped for a slimmer CTS-V model and plumbed to feed the turbo. Factory truck iron manifolds were flipped for a forward and upward exit, making the turbo hookup possible. From the turbo is a 4-inch stainless downpipe, QTP electric cutouts, and 4- to 3-inch stepped stainless Pypes A-body kit with Race-Pro mufflers. The transmission just got a simple rebuild, Transgo HD2 shift kit and PTC 3,400-stall lockup converter. Out back is a factory 12-bolt from a '68 Chevelle equipped with 3.73:1 gears and the factory clutch-type Positraction unit.
Despite all the techy stuff throughout the car, they aimed to keep the interior as close to stock as possible. They both didn't want to turn it into a race car and put in a rollcage, which would surely do that. The only hints that it's a 750-plus wheel horsepower car on the inside are the Auto Meter 5-inch tach plus water, volt, and oil pressure gauges and the AEM O2 readout next to the Turbosmart Eboost2 controller on the dash. Other than that, it looks like a factory A-body. All of these items were wired into the engine bay by Justin to accomplish the cleanest installation possible