Ray Simpson1948 Chevrolet coupeClermont, Florida
ChassisThe '48 Chevy chassis gave way for a '76 Monte Carlo chassis upgraded with Fatman tubular control arms, cut stock coils, and 2-inch dropped spindles using the stock 11-inch disc brakes. The Monte's coil springs and trailing arms were retained in the rear to support the 10-bolt rearend.
DrivetrainJim Russell rebuilt a small-block 355-cid V-8 and then mated it to a 700-R4 transmission rebuilt by Fourth Gear in Apopka, Florida. The engine runs 9.5:1 compression, a Pete Jackson gear drive, an Edelbrock 600 carburetor on a Performer Air Gap intake, MSD ignition, and ceramic-coated, 2-inch Hedman headers that feed into twin Smitty mufflers. A Walker radiator, Perma-Cool oil cooler, and Flex-a-lite fan keep temperatures on the 270hp motor in the green.
Wheels & TiresSome 15x7 American Racing Torq-Thrust IIs wrapped in Firestone rubber (215/65s front and 225/70s rear) provide an almost classic look.
Body & PaintThe most noticeable changes to the body are the 4-inch chop and equally pie-cut hood. The re-chromed grille is stock and is accented by a new steel front bumper painted to match the body. The new steel rear roll pan blends in perfectly with the Chevy's fenders. Stock taillights remain, augmented by a new center brake light, but all other emblems, door handles, and side view mirrors were eliminated. Custom wood grain paint separates the two colors. The unusual woodgrain separation stripe is a trademark of the painter, Ray "Solo" Fuentes of Art By Solo.
InteriorB.J. Byrd from Minneola, Florida, covered the Mazda buckets, cut-down Monte Carlo rear seat, custom console, and door panels with shades of purple and cream vinyl and accented it with light brown wool carpeting. Faria Performance Instruments white-faced gauges add sparkle to the custom dash. The custom stereo, LeCarra wheel-topped tilt column, and Vintage Air A/C make the car an enjoyable highway cruiser. The trunk now holds the relocated battery and hidden gas filler pipe. All the modules for the electric doors, tool storage, rear mounted battery, and more are located behind the upholstered panels in the trunk.