Sleeper cars are legendary in the automotive community, they may not be pretty but anyone foolish enough to pull up to the line next to them is in for a rough ride. Early 2000’s Chevys have largely been the center of this praise, rounded off styling combined with relatively stout horsepower numbers to make a perfect sleeper car. Unfortunately, many of these cars were FWD, however, that didn’t stop one enthusiastic builder from creating his dream high-horsepower dragster. Swapping out an engine may sound difficult, but what about an entire drivetrain? Because, while they can compete, FWD cars are usually not as exciting as their RWD counterparts.
It all started when the owner was in high school, he had a 2003 Chevy Impala which he would drive to and from school in. The plan was, originally, to convert that car to RWD and race it. However, upon acquiring a donor vehicle he decided to use that one instead.
Under the hood is a Chevy LS engine which runs power to a 10-bolt rear end from a 1980 Chevrolet Camaro. He routed the drive shaft through the exhaust tunnel. The engine is also equipped with a turbocharger and custom-made turbo kit. If you took the drag radials off of the rear wheels you’d never guess that this is a little sleeper making big power.
This is an inspiring story of a man who had the determination and focus to look past people who told him that it couldn’t be done. “Everyone thinks that it’s dumb until they see the final result.” says the owner. While many others would have given up, he ignored their doubts and was ultimately triumphant because of it. This is true of anything, but especially when building cars, if someone says “it can’t be done” what it means is “nobody’s done it yet” and in the words of the great Burt Reynolds “We ain’t never not made it yet, have we?
Elizabeth is a hardcore horsepower enthusiast with unmatched intensity for making things faster and louder. She wakes up for power and performance and only sleeps to charge up for the next project that’s heading to the track. From autocross to drag racing, Elizabeth is there with you, so stay tuned for her unique perspective on horsepower news, builds, tech info, and installs — with her, it’ll never be boring!