A V8 engine stuffed into a GM T-car is always a good time waiting to happen. The Chevrolet Chevette (and all of the GM badge-engineered versions, including the Buick-Opel and the Isuzu I-Mark) go against the grain of most late 1970s-1980s small cars in that they were rear-drive, so if you have fabrication skills and some patience, your reward is a featherweight body shell that can take just about anything…including a Cadillac 500, if your head is not in the right place. There might not be any replacement for displacement, but there is an issue with size in the T-car. Any V8 will make a Chevette get up and dance, all you have to do is decide how wild you want the engine to be. In the case of this mini-Vette, the powerplant is a 350 hooked to an automatic, sent back to big tires. It’s mannerisms are impeccable: no drama, no fuss, just line it up straight and hit the throttle. After a quick couple-inch pop-up, the front end settles down and the Chevette is on it’s way. Nice!
Now, maybe it’s just our ears after a long day, but does it sound like this 350 is a little bit on the mild side to you? Maybe it’s just not working hard, or whatever, but we think there’s plenty of room for some fun in the form of a 150 shot plate!
Mild you say? Would you believe a .460 lift hydraulic cam? You can find recent pics of that car on Detroit Harry\’s photos website. Look under recent additions, and scroll through various events. The car runs at Kil Kare regularly. With a little more motor in it now, it will drive in to a nice little wheel stand, carrying the front end several feet out.
notice where the cone(starting line) is in reference to where the car is at. the second photo, the starting line is behind the rear wheels at this point