Last month we set out to infuse some modern road manners and corner-carving ability into an unlikely candidate, a ’71 Chevelle wagon. Why a wagon? Well, our theory is that if a pile of parts can make a big tank handle and ride great, then the benefit to the more common two-door coupe should be even better. Besides, there’s something super cool about dropping jaws by flinging a family trickster through cones.

In Part One we stuffed a bunch of components from Global West under the nose of the Chevelle, including a close ratio steering box and gigantic Wilwood binders. This time we’re giving equal attention to the back half of our A-body and then we hit the track to see if all the welding, wrenching, and cash paid off.

Putting it all to the test

Sure, the new parts look great, but what we wanted to know is how much better the ’71 would perform. The first step was to take the Chevelle out to our test venue in El Toro, California, for some quality cone-dodging time. We then brought it back out with all it upgrades and ran the same tests. To clear the new Wilwood brakes we hit up Shaun Dove at EVOD Industries for a set of his retro-styled billet rollers in 18x9 front and 19x10 rear. For rubber we chose 300 treadwear BFGoodrich KDW tires from Driverz in 275/35-18 front and 295/30-19 rear. This tire offers a great balance between high grip and excellent wear. We should also note that the wagon drove great on the highway and streets. The wallowy feeling was gone as was the vague steering. The ride was firmer, but in a good way, and the suspension still managed to absorb bumps and dips with ease.

Evod Industries
1119 South Mission Road Suite 324
CA  92028
Global West Suspension
655 S. Lincoln Ave.
San Bernardino
CA  92408
Wilwood Engineering
4700 Calle Bolero
CA  93012
Eibach Springs
264 Mariah Circle
CA  92879
BF Goodrich Tire Company
One Parkway S.
SC  29602
Penske Suspension
150 Franklin Street
PA  19602