There are a plethora of cars out there from every decade that were never considered “muscle cars” or “racey” that look spectacular when worked over to deliver just the right look. In modern times, the Dodge Avenger and the Chevrolet Cobalt come to mind. But another of Chevrolet’s vehicles, the infamous Chevette of the 1970’s and 80’s, simply isn’t one of those vehicles.
Try as one might, the little subcompact car that superseded the Vega lacks all the traits generally associated with muscle cars or race cars. It’s a small, puny, hatchback that, with just over 60 horsepower on tap in its finest years, has a lot to overcome.
But there’s hope yet in the classic little Chevette, you see, as the cars came in a rear wheel drive configuration, making engine swaps a distinct possibility for enthusiasts. That is, if you could fit the engine down into the rather petite engine compartment. Alas, it has been done, with Rover V8’s, GM 60-degree V6’s, and even Chevy small blocks having been installed into Chevettes. And one such example is currently being auctioned off on eBay, packed with everything you’d expect to find in a Pro Street-style car, in a package that doesn’t exactly scream intimidation.
The Chevette, a 1977 model, is equipped with a 181 cubic inch, inline four-cylinder GM crate motor producing a reported 500 horsepower with assistance from a single turbocharger. In the hatch area, you’ll find a nitrous oxide bottle that been plumbed up to the motor, delivering what the seller claims to be 300 horsepower, bringing this little monster up to 800 horses at 8,500 RPM. If you’re doing the quick math at home, that’s over 12 times the power this car had originally with its 57 and 63 horsepower options from the factory. Other specifications on the powerplant include a Crane roller camshaft and Jesel roller rockers and 7.7:1 compression pistons.
Elsewhere, there’s a full roll bar setup, aluminum wheel tubs, aluminum racing wheels, a tach and shift light, MSD ignition components, a B&M shifter, line lock, coilover shocks, an aftermarket fuel cell, and wheelie bars out back completing the look.
While it may not be the quickest or fastest car out there, and certainly not the most fear-striking of cars, this one surely draws some attention at the track and at car shows. We dig it.