Following a week-long thrash that at his Oak Grove, Missouri chassis shop, Larry Larson is all set to debut his brand-spanking-new Cadillac ATS-V at this weekend’s Street Outlaws: No Prep Kings filming at New England Dragway in Epping, New Hampshire.
The Cadillac, which Larson and his team have been quietly assembling over the course of the last five months, was completed in the overnight hours Thursday night and loaded up at 4 o’clock Friday morning for the 27-hour trek to New Hampshire. Larson made a stop at Dragway 42 in Ohio Friday afternoon to test, and then ventured on North, with plans to arrive in time for the opening round of eliminations on Saturday.
The car will sport power from the same Pro Line Racing 481X that propelled his familiar Chevrolet S-10 to a third-place finish in the No Prep Kings standings a year ago. The large, 140mm turbocharger will also be utilized. Because aftermarket carbon fiber or fiberglass panels do not exist at present for the ATS-V, the factory pieces were used from nose to tail — only a carbon fiber hood and the plastic OEM front and rear bumpers make any departure from the factory steel. And Larson insists he’s just fine with that.
“Just like the S-10 was an ‘up yours’ to Hot Rod in response to the rules of the Unlimited class at Drag Week, this car is going to make a statement in no-prep. I personally think all of these cars in this deal [No Prep Kings] ought to be using all of the factory panels,” he shares.
For Larson, it’s been a week of sleepless nights to pull off the nearly impossible in completing the new Caddy; he took delivery of the painted final product from Goacher’s Street Legends in Kansas on Saturday, and then set off on a nearly around-the-clock endeavor to get it complete and off to New Hampshire in time, noting that he’s gone as long as 47 hours without sleep at one point.
First hit on the new car last night at Dragway 42. We are in NH ready to tear these guys up. GSL Goachers Street LegendsPosted by Larson Race Cars on Saturday, May 25, 2019
The finished product tips the scales at 2,700-pounds, 50-pounds shy of the minimum weight for the single-turbo combination, and with plenty of breathing room under the 2,950-pound minimum should he transition back to the twin-turbo combination in the future. The Cadillac project came about over the winter in response to body and wheelbase rules instituted in the series last season that forced Larson to modify the bed of his S-10, resulting in an appearance that he was quick to admit was unsavory but necessary in order to compete. The series had informed him at the close of last season that the truck would no longer be permitted in its current form, and with the Cadillac still under construction, he competed at the season opener at Maryland International Raceway in a borrowed car.
Inspecting the finished ATS-V up close, you’ll see the finer details that went into the car over this five months — Larson notes that not a single deus fastener is visible on its exterior, and even the windows were glued to the body for a clean, screw-less appearance.