VIDEO: Jay Leno Drives the Ringbrothers-Built ’66 Chevelle

When you think of first-generation Chevelles, you think the big, long, square-shaped musclecars of ’64-67. Typically packing a 283 0r 327 cubic-inch small-block V8, it wouldn’t be until 1966 when the Chevelle SS became standard with big-block power (the optional Z15 Chevelle of ’65 doesn’t count). With a 4-bbl carburetor and as much as 375 hp (gross) under the hood, it made for one badass musclecar back in its heyday.

Fast-forward some fifty years later, and you’ll need a heckuva lot more than that to impress the Jones’ these days. If you want to make a name for yourself, you can start by taking that 375 hp at the crank, tripling that number and have the sum of of your arithmetic to result as your power output to the pavement. In the case of this Ringbrothers-built ’66 Chevelle, that number is right around 1,000 hp.

The Chevelle in question was actually built by for a guy in Ohio by the crew at RB. Wanting a car that highlights the quality and detail built into the car, the owner requested the crew paint it a hue that was unlike any other, but also more subdued than say, the bright yellow that was sprayed onto the LS-powered Pantera built for last year’s SEMA show. Oh, and he insisted on having “metal seats.”

In order to the get there, the crew at RB installed a Wagner-built, Whipple supercharged 416 ci. LS7 stroker engine, backed by a Tremec TR-6060 and a  4.11 gear set stuffed in the rearend (although they later admit, that they should have installed 3.55 instead). On 91-octane, the combination is good for 980 rwhp.

Since SEMA, the Chevelle has made its way into several publications and much more recently, in a video hosted by Jay Leno’s Garage. In the film, Jay is simply blown away by not only the sheer power and performance of the Chevelle, but the immense level of quality and attention-to-detail of the build. After what we’ve seen from they Pantera and this Chevelle, we can only wonder where the Ringbrothers will top this!


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