“What is that?”

“A ’67 Chevelle.”

“No way! That’s a Chevelle?”

The guy and his girlfriend were driving an ’85 Chevy pickup, but he clearly had a case of Chevelle identity crisis. “I hear that all the time,” Tim Moore says. “Nobody thinks this is a Chevelle.”

It’s a Chevelle, even with the B-pillar. Chevy built 2,104 Deluxe 300 V-8 Chevelles in 1967, which was the small-block, bargain-basement version of the more popular SS396 Chevelle coupe. Tim ran across this Chevelle and instantly recognized its potential despite its somewhat pedestrian countenance.

Not surprisingly, the 300 remained stock for about as long as it took Tim to drive it home. Within months, the Chevelle was sporting a 400ci small-block, a TH350 trans with a 3,000-stall converter, a 12-bolt with 3.55 gears, and a NOS Cheater nitrous kit. Over the next year, Tim made a few deals and scored a Hotchkis front suspension that included springs, a tubular upper control arm, a 1-1/8-inch front sway bar, and a second-generation Camaro 11-inch front disc brake conversion.

This took time to assemble, but when Tim finished, we invited him to slap leather in CHP’s annual 0-100-0 Shootout, which appeared in the June 2000 issue. Tim knew he had to let Editor Jeff Smith drive, so he idiot-proofed the combination to initiate the 175hp nitrous hit with an NOS rpm switch set at 3,000 rpm and designed to shut off at 6,000 rpm before the Crane HI-6R’s rev limiter stepped in at 6,300. “You don’t want the nitrous on when the engine hits the rev limiter,” Tim says. “That’ll get ugly.”

All this effort netted an 11.94/114.60 blast, which was the best official run of the day for the Shootout. The effort was outstanding, but with its one replacement black fender and faded factory paint, the next move was to give the 300 a facelift. Tim convinced his pal Brett Benson to perform the quarter-panel surgery and lay on the paint that makes this 300 sedan deserving of its Deluxe nameplate.

While the Chevelle’s dragstrip performance was impressive, the 400’s street manners left much to be desired. That’s when Tim built the “HOT, HOT, HOT” engine featured in the Oct. and Nov. ’01 issues. The motor cranked out an impressive 422 hp while hitting his wallet for a mere $2,400. To complete the 300’s new-found image, Tim stepped up to a set of Baer disc brakes fore and aft framed with a set of Center Line Meteor II 17x9-½ wheels mounted with a set of Kumho 275/40ZR17 tires.

With the car now complete, we convinced Tim to head back to the dragstrip to see how his milder Deluxe version fared. Still sporting the 3.55 gears, 3,000-stall TH350 trans, and a set of Mickey Thompson E.T. Street sticky tires, the Chevelle ripped off a normally aspirated 13.68/101.01 effort. Then, with a flick of the arming switch, the Chevelle ripped off an impressive 12.32/117.45-mph blast even with a relatively slow 2.199 60-foot. Clearly, the Chevelle’s 117-mph trap speed indicates it has the potential to run deep into the 11s.

Future plans call for a complete TH700-R4 automatic that will add the much-needed Overdrive gear for highway cruising. With the 3.55 gears and loose converter, 70 mph required spinning the 355ci motor to 3,800 rpm. With the 0.70:1 overdrive, cruising at 70 mph will soon loaf the motor down at 2,250 rpm. Tim estimates the Chevelle could knock down 15 to 18 mpg. The goal was to build a great overall performance car and the combination of low-12 jousting prowess and excellent street manners makes it clear that Tim has created his own version of Deluxe accommodations.