When it comes to sunny Saturday morning cruises, nothing beats taking a ride in a fullsize Chevy muscle car; and Smithville Missouri's, Robin Greenhegen, knows all about that as he owns one of the most iconic fullsize Chevys there is, a 1963 Impala SS. Greenhegen has had many different models over the years, but the slammed Impala project you see here is his latest. This car, like many we come across, is a great example of what a father and son can create with the right components and a diehard work ethic, one that would have this classy car together in a year's time.
"My son [Robin Jr.] bought it for me after going on the Hot Rod Power Tour together in 2009." He said. 'The car was actually restored 10 years before that, and after our purchase, it basically sat as a stock car for a year while we were getting parts and making plans." The Greenhegen's had no interest in a bone-stock ride; instead they loaded up a list of goodies from The Resto Mod Store in Independence, Missouri, including a complete aftermarket suspension, and an Edelbrock top end setup, along with other engine goodies that would change it from a stale stocker to one immaculate Imp.
Once all the parts were compiled the build began, starting with the frame, suspension, drivetrain, bodywork, paint, interior, and finally, the trim. To become the straight specimen you see here, the Impala received some needed attention in the form of body work and frame fabrication. The factory fullsize frame was actually x-braced and fully boxed to help solidify the car before the suspension and drivetrain was installed. "Bobby Schumacher at Vintage Fabrication in Independence was a big help in finishing project," Robin said. "Robin [Jr.] works at The Resto Mod Store and he has done such a great job on the car, too. It sounds mean, drives great, and rides smooth."
With the car complete, Greenhegen debuted the Impala during the 2011 NSRA show in Louisville, Missouri, as part of a Builder's Showcase. And because it's also Robin's primary ride, it's taken him to dozens of car shows and cruises in the last two years and racked up a number of awards. This family-built street machine was put together for cruising and looking good, and you can bet they are enjoying their stylish creation thoroughly. The Goodguys show, World of Wheels, and the National Street Rod Association events are just a few that Robin attends with his Black Cherry two-toned beauty, and he has plans to attend even more in 2014.
Engine & Drivetrain
Under the hood of the Impala is a 468ci big-block Chevy that was bored, line-honed, and decked before getting assembled with a slew of performance parts; these include hypereutectic pistons that provide 10.5:1 compression, an upgraded crank and rods, and a roller camshaft that provides plenty of usable torque. Edelbrock's Performer RPM top end package was used to increase power output and shorty headers route fumes through a Flowmaster exhaust system. The accessory pulleys come from March Performance, while the air cleaner is a Billet Specialties piece. Power output is approximately 490 horsepower at 5,500 rpm with 450 lb-ft of torque. The trans is a Muncie 4-speed manual box that connects to the factory diff with 3.43:1 gears and a Posi.
Chassis & Suspension
Peer beneath the Impala and you will see a reinforced frame with built suspension to give the Impala such a wicked stance. Tubular A-arms, coil springs, anti-sway bars, and RideTech airbags at all four corners add to the handling characteristics, while the steering was upgraded with Classic Performance Products' quick ratio steering box.
Wheels & Brakes
The Impala rolls on large Billet Specialties Legend Series wheels; 18x10 in the front and 20x10 in the rear. The tires featured are Nitto's Neo Gens that measure 275/30 up front and 295/40 out back. The whole combo comes to a stop via CPP's Big Brake Kit, which comes with 13-inch discs at all four corners with six piston brake calipers.
Interior & Spray
Inside is the stock black vinyl interior that was done by Vintage Fabrication in Independence, Missouri. Under the dash is an A/C unit from Vintage Air. A Billet Specialties steering column and custom console with a Hurst shifter are also features of the cockpit. The paint scheme is a two-tone Black Cherry/Pearl Metallic/Jet Black Metallic combo that really makes it stand out in a crowd. The door handles, as well as the firewall under the hood, was shaved for a clean look.