Bob Wise thrives on Chevrolets. But with a musclecar resume packed with some of the best vintage Chevrolets ever built, what does a retired electrical/mechanical engineer do for his next car? Simplechoose a hot-looking 56 Chevy Bel Air outfitted with an electronically fuel-injected LT1 engine and four-wheel disc brakes. But its the attention to detail that really makes this red and white Bel Air shine. Inside the engine compartment the late-model LT1 looks right at home. Although the 93 Corvette LT1 engine is relatively stock, a K&N air cleaner and a tweaked computer chip allow the 56 to really cook. For exhaust duties, a set of Street and Performance block-hugger headers connect to a Borla exhaust system to help the small-block breathe easier.
The underside of Bobs Bel Air continues the detail theme with a sandblasted and powdercoated frame. Attached to the undercarriage are four KYB shock absorbers, polygraphite suspension bushings, and front and rear sway bars with a late-model 605 power-steering box. To complement the suspension, a full set of American Torq-Thrust wheels rests at all four corners wrapped with BFGoodrich TA radials. To keep things safe, four power-assisted Wilwood disc brakes slow the Chevy down when the need arises.
For cruising comfort, a Street and Performance polished A/C compressor helps keep things cool inside. Since exterior details are the most important, painting guru George Gray from Van Nuys, California, sprayed the Bel Air with DuPont red and white. Inside, Dan Miller from Westlake Village, California, went to work wrapping the interior with Connolly Red leather and vintage-correct red carpet. To give the shoebox Chevy a touch of that 60s look, Moon gauges and a tachometer help keep Bob informed of engine data during cruise time.
Since Bob and his wife Merrlyn enjoy cruising their Chevy throughout California, the 56 is outfitted with a fuel-friendly 700-R4 overdrive transmission turning a set of 3.31 rear axle gears. And for Bob and Merrlyn, cruising their Chevy is the best part. At the various car shows theyve driven to, the Bel Air has earned its shares of awards. Thats doing it right.