1987 Buick Grand National - Black & Blue

A Two-Tone 11-Second GN That Can Even Put The Beat Down On Racecars At The Circle Track

Jim McIlvaine Mar 15, 2007 0 Comment(s)

As an avid circle track racer, and knowing what a fan of NASCAR Julie is, Jim insisted on setting up the GN's suspension in the same manner as his racecars. Hotchkis lowering springs dropped the nose approximately 2.5 inches in the front and 3 inches in the rear. Lefthander tubular units replaced the front upper control arms with a Hotchkis 1 3/8-inch hollow front sway bar tightening up the front end. Hotchkis boxed upper and lower control arms make up the rear suspension, guided by a Hotchkis 1-inch solid rear sway bar. Twelve-way adjustable PRO shocks are used at all four corners, and polyurethane bushings are used throughout. Baer 13-inch front and 12-inch rear brakes with drilled and slotted rotors replace the primitive stock disc/drum combo. The final ingredient was a custom set of Boyd Coddington 17x9-inch chrome wheels with Nitto 555 rubber to really draw attention to the slammed cherry.

Even with the Nitto 275/40R17 drag radials, the torque monster still managed a 1.63 60-foot time and an 11.12 ET at 110 mph down the 1320. Even more impressive though is the cash and prizes Jim has taken home at Slinger Super Speedway. "It's turned faster times at the circle track than full on racecars. It even outperformed our C6. We wound up getting rid of the C6 because it just sat since she loved driving the GN so much. She doesn't let me drive it, and she's already been through three sets of tires in a year and a half. I am sure the neighbors don't appreciate that, but they'll get over it."

Apparently, the apple doesn't fall far from the tree, either. Julie said, "Whenever my [8-year-old] daughter, Jayna, is in the car she giggles when I step on it and she says 'faster, faster.' She says she wants to drive a Vette when she is 16." Good luck with that one, Jayna. In the mean time, she can continue to enjoy many miles of excitement in her mom's GN. And who knows, maybe when she's old enough to drive, mom will hand over the keys. Then again, maybe not!

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