Builder: Goolsby Customs
Goolsby Customs specializes in creating very refined versions of vintage cars. When a European customer approached them looking for a 1967 Chevelle that had a very clean and modern sport cars feel to it, they knew it was right in line with their design philosophy. The customer loved a charcoal Chevelle that Goolsby had built a few years back and wanted one similar, but of course not an exact copy.
To give a chrome-covered 1960s American sedan a modern European feel requires a great deal of simplification on all fronts. To stay true to its identity, Goolsby wanted to keep all the body lines on a stock Chevelle, which meant they needed to be very choosy with the modifications, and perhaps most importantly the color palate, to hit their goal. The goal eventually flushed itself out as a Chevelle that felt like it had been built by a Ferrari or Porsche enthusiast. The tucked body-color bumpers, shaved trim and driprails, matte black grille and window trim, along with the Lokar/Goolsby Customs Signature Series door handles go a long way toward modernizing without losing the Chevelle appeal. The gorgeous yet understated custom interior by M&M Hot Rod Interiors has red and yellow Dakota Digital gauges that really drove the theme home for us.
Of course the Ferrari feel is nothing if the handling is more boatlike, so to ensure the big Chevelle would be fun to run through winding roads in the European countryside, Goolsby set it atop a Roadster Shop Fast Track chassis with independent rear suspension.
By The Numbers
Engine: 710hp Turn Key Engine Supply LS3 with Kenne Bell supercharger and Holley HP EFI
Trans: GM 4L85E four-speed automatic overdrive
Suspension/Chassis: Roadster Shop Fast Track chassis with independent rear suspension
Brakes: 14-inch Wilwood six-piston front, 13-inch Wilwood four-piston rear
Wheels & Tires: 19x10 and 20x12 NuTek Wheels with 255/35 and 335/30 Michele Pilot Super Sport tires
Contact: Goolsby Customs; 205-428-2169; GoolsbyCustoms.com
Builder: D&Z Customs
Despite a year passing between shows, SEMA project vehicles are notorious for being pushed to the very last possible minute. This Citrus Green Camaro known as "Envious" from D&Z Customs is no exception, but you'd never know it by looking at it. With an approximate start to finish time of four months, the latest in-house project for Randy Johnson at D&Z Customs is actually designed to be a testbed for parts and modifications. Using what he learned from his seat time in other in-house second-gen Camaros, Johnson sought to bring a higher level of performance to this car without radical body modifications.
"We're essentially pushing a brick through the air," Johnson told us. "At 140, 150 mph on Road America, the front end gets extremely light on the orange car." To combat that, he added a large front chin spoiler and splitter, as well as an air extraction hood to relieve pressure. The rear received a tall lip-style spoiler to push the rear down.
Johnson had zero test time on the car at SEMA, but he got to see how well his modifications worked when the car was invited to the Optima Ultimate Street Car Invitational. According to him, there was a very noticeable improvement in stability and control on the long straightaway where the 700-horse LS7 easily got the car in the 130-plus range. That's great news for D&Z, but also for anyone building a second-gen Camaro with track day intentions; versions of many of the parts will be available through D&Z as bolt-ons.
By The Numbers
Engine: 441ci LS7 with Dailey Engineering dry-sump pan, FAST LSXR intake
Trans: Tremec T56, Centerforce DYAD clutch
Suspension/Chassis: Heidts Pro-G front subframe with D&Z custom cantilever actuated RideTech triple-adjustable coilovers, Heidts Pro-G IRS in the rear
Brakes: 14-inch Wilwood with six-piston calipers, front; 10.5-inch Wilwood with four-piston, rear
Wheels & Tires: 18x10 and 19x12 Forgeline DE3C centerlock wheels with 295/35 and 335/30 Nitto NT-05 tires
Contact: D&Z Customs; 262-347-9741; and DandZCustoms.com