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Muscle Car Comparison - Midwestern 'Tweeners

'Tweener Comparisons

Photography by Marko Radielovic, Tom Donchez


The Specs
Car: '71 Chevy Chevelle
Engine: 555ci big-block
Heads: Dart Pro 1 aluminum, 2.30/1.90 intake/exhaust valvesInduction: Edelbrock Super Victor aluminum single-plane intake, 1,250-cfm Holley Dominator carb
Camshaft: Comp Cams solid roller, 286/294 degrees duration at 0.050-inch lift, 0.775/0.748-inch lift
Power: 940 hp @ 6,800 rpm, 795 lb-ft @ 5,200 rpm
Transmission: Turbo 400, TCI 4,800-stall converter, TCI transbrakeRearend: GM 12-bolt, Strange spool, Richmond 4.10:1 gears, Moser axles
Front suspension: Stock, Competition Engineering shocks
Rear suspension: Stock springs, Competition Engineering shocks, Southside lift barsBrakes: Stock discs, front; stock drums, rear
Wheels and tires: 15x3.5 Cragar Drag Stars with P185/60R15 BFGoodrich TAs, front; 15x10 Cragar Drag Stars with P325/50R15 BFGoodrich Drag Radials, rear
Body mods: Harwood fiberglass cowl hoodPaint: Black, by Kelly Howard
Best e.t.: 10.01 @ 133 mph (quarter-mile)Cost to build: $25,000


Banzai Buford
This portly (nearly 4,000 pounds with driver) '72 Buick Gran Sport, owned by Tom and Debbie Jenkins of Champaign, Illinois, has run a best of 11.17 at 121 mph. That much heft requires some serious grunt to move with alacrity. Tom's Buford gets its motivation from a 0.040-over 455 sporting Bill Miller 11.7:1 forged slugs, a lumpy Lunati flat-tappet cam, and fully tweaked iron heads off a '68 430. A TA Performance intake and King Demon carb are perched on top while Kenne Bell headers handle the exhaust. Tom normally runs his GS on a mix of VP race gas and pump premium. Last winter Tom made some changes and is hoping for a high 10 on the motor before he whacks it with laughing gas.


The Specs
Car: '72 Buick Gran Sport
Engine: 455ci big-block
Heads: Buick production cast-iron, 2.125 /1.75 intake/exhaust valves
Induction: T/A Performance SP2 aluminum single-plane intake, 1,090-cfm King Demon carb
Camshaft: Lunati solid flat-tappet, 260/280 degrees duration at 0.050-inch lift, 0.604/0.605-inch lift
Power: 640 hp @ 6,100 rpm, 600 lb-ft @ 4,700 rpm
Transmission: Turbo-400 automatic, B&M shift kit, Coan 3,900-stall converterRearend: GM 12-bolt, 3.73:1 gearsFront suspension: Stock, Moroso springs, Competition Engineering adjustable shocks, Energy Suspension polyurethane bushingsRear suspension: Stock, boxed control arms, Moroso springs, Competition Engineering adjustable shocks, Energy Suspension polyurethane bushings
Brakes: Stock discs, front; '85 Buick Riviera discs, rear
Wheels and tires: 15x4 Center Line Pro Stocks with 26x7.5-15 Mickey Thompsons, front; 15x8.5 Center Line Pro Stocks with P275/60R15 Goodyear Eagle STs, rear
Body mods: Glasstek fiberglass cowl hood
Paint: Burnished Copper, by LK Customs, Peoria, Illinois
Best e.t.: 11.17 @ 121 (quarter-mile)Cost to build: Approximately $27,000


Street Super Stocker
Chrysler never built a '69 Hemi 'Cuda, but the handful of '68 Hemi 'Cudas and Darts have left an indelible mark on Super Stock drag racing for more than 30 years. Knowing these lightweight A-bodies mix well with the hemispherical wonder motors, Tom Hunsaker set out to build his own '69 version-the one Chrysler never built. Hailing from Springboro, Ohio, Tom felt that if he was going to shoehorn a Hemi into his diminutive Barracuda, he might as well make it one with some serious cubic inches. So, he screwed together a 528-inch thumper utilizing a Mopar Performance "Mega Block" as a foundation to house the 4.15-inch stroker crank, and MP 12.5:1 pistons. The aluminum MP heads were then treated to a home porting job and converted to a dual spark-plug configuration by Indy Cylinder Heads. Tom also procured a magnesium cross-ram for that nostalgic look along with a pair of 770-cfm Holley carbs and an NOS Pro Fogger for "insurance."

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