Incredible pro-street build. All steel except for hood. Pro-built 454 Chevy. Beautifully detailed throughout. Runs and drives superbly with no fussiness. Pump gas, power windows, stereo. Nice!
Starting with a very clean ’57 210 was a smart choice, but take a close look at the photos and you’ll see just how straight it really is. There’s not a wave or ripple anywhere on the bodywork and even for a car with 500+ horsepower churning through it, the gaps are dead-nuts even. Aside from the fiberglass lift-off hood with that gaping scoop, the bodywork is 100% steel and with a few choice modifications, it looks spectacular. You’ll note that the hood ornament, door handles, and deck trim have all been shaved, giving it a very clean look that’s still pure ’57 Chevy. The simple 210 trim works rather well with monochromatic paint jobs, in this case, a medium purple from the Nissan color chart and we have to say we really like the look. And as with all ‘50s cars, there’s still plenty of chrome, all of which is in excellent shape, having been re-chromed re replaced when the car was built.
Glance inside and you won’t mistake this for a race car. Front bucket seats wear 1957 Chevy cloth and vinyl, making for a cool contrast that works well. Likewise, there’s correct loop carpet that should look familiar to ’57 Chevy fans, and the door panels are custom pieces that use the same materials for a consistent look. The original ’57 dash is still in place, but the gauges are handsome white-faced dials that seem custom-made just for this application, and they’re joined by a Sun tach down low and a transmission temperature gauge with warning light on the other side. A tilt column wears a late-model Chevy steering wheel for a consistent look and yes, you’ll find power windows and an updated stereo to make this a more comfortable cruiser. There is a gigantic trunk with custom wheel wells and a raised floor to cover the 4-link rear suspension and fuel cell, and you fill it up through a trick trap door in the trunk floor.
The block is a 71 or 72 454 “seasoned” casting filled with a forged steel crank, Ross forged aluminum pistons with a 10.08:1 compression ratio, Chevy rods with full floating wrist pins, all topped by a set of open chamber Brodix aluminum heads. The carburetor is a dual-feed Holley Dominator on a Weiand hi-rise intake manifold and there’s Comp Cams hydraulic lifter bumpstick in the middle, just for good street manners. It’s also got Crane roller rockers, titanium valve retainers, and oversized stainless valves. A GM HEI ignition system lights it up, and the sucker is properly tuned, because it springs to life almost instantly and idles well even when it’s cold. No it’s not Cadillac smooth, there’s no doubt there’s one hell of a motor in there, but if you want good street manners and more than 500 horsepower, this engine totally nails it. Ancillary parts include a custom serpentine belt drive system for the accessories, including a Power Master alternator and a heavy-duty water pump, and there’s a Griffin aluminum radiator up front, complete with an electric fan for low-speed work. The block was color-matched to the bodywork, there are beautifully made custom inner panels that frame the engine like a piece of art, and the rest was either polished or chrome plated. This sucker looks as good as it runs!
The chassis was suitably beefed up for duty, too, starting with a custom tubular subframe welded into the original C-section frame rails. There’s a removable crossmember for the TH400 3-speed automatic transmission, which also has a high-stall torque converter and a shift kit inside, but retains full automatic operation. The front suspension is from Martz Chassis, and includes adjustable coil-over shocks, tubular A-arms, and rack-and-pinion steering, plus a good-sized disc brake at each end. A custom driveshaft spins a narrowed Ford 9-inch rear with street-friendly 3.50 gears inside and with all that motor, you really don’t need a lot of gear to get things going. A 5-link with another set of coil-overs manages the rear end. Long-tube headers lead to a set of mufflers with polished tips exiting just ahead of the rear tires. Custom Weld aluminum wheels are fitted and carry appropriately staggered 215/70/15 front and 31x18.50-15 rear radials.
This car cost far, far more than the asking price to build. It’s just beautiful in every way, and you can see the attention to detail throughout. There’s lots of firepower on tap, but it’s docile enough to drive to the car show and it runs on pump gas. We have extensive receipts, photos, and a neat little book of specifications, so this is one big-bore hot rod you can buy with confidence, knowing that you’ll always be able to maintain it properly. Please spend some time with this car—we’re sure you’ll fall for it just like we did.
For more details and photos, please visit www.HarwoodMotors.com