In color psychology, white is the color of innocence. This very same adjective could be used to describe the ’08 Corvette Chris Wargacki found for sale in Oregon four years ago, equipped with a docile six-speed automatic. It could also be used to describe the attitude the 20-something Chicago native had about the 11,000-mile stocker. “I purchased the Corvette with the intention of minor mods and keeping it a nice weekend car.” Soon, however, the Arctic White C6 looked more like an empty canvas than a symbol of purity.
“The following season the car went 11.0 NA and 10.2 in the quarter-mile on a 150-shot of nitrous,” reports Chris. Of course, he didn’t make the low 10-second pass unscathed. With the #7 cylinder burnt to a crisp, he turned to HKE to build an LS3 stroker. A familiar formula of Wiseco forged pistons and a Callies rotating assembly enlarged the bullet to 416 ci, while bumping up the compression to a street-friendly 11.25:1. Advanced Induction CNC-ported stock heads and a Patrick G-spec’d cam were selected to feed and purge the beast. The tame but healthy 230/234-duration bumpstick was cut with a 117 LSA.
Being a PDR (paintless dent repair) technician and owner of Dent Solutions Plus, Chris was also concerned with the exterior of his Corvette. It would need more sultry body lines representative of his business. Luckily he had a body man in the family. His brother Michael, from whom he acquired his affinity for fast cars, took on the job of a widebody conversion using genuine Z06 parts. Once the new front bumper, fenders, and quarter-panels were color-matched it was time to turn his attention to the rest of the car.
Knowing he’d be spending a lot of time behind the wheel, Chris had Atrendz Auto install the touchscreen Pioneer DVD head unit and helped in the initial modifications while he was employed there. Other interior upgrades include an AEM boost and wideband O2 gauge.
With newly minted GM specialist Larry Hamilton on board at AMS Performance, Chris took the ’08 Corvette across town to dial in the naturally aspirated setup. After some consideration, the nitrous system was traded for an East Coast Supercharging kit with a Paxton Novi 2200 blower, capable of over 1,200 horsepower. To match the compressed and cooled air, Larry also ordered up some high impedance 90 lb/hr injectors, Z06 in-tank fuel pump, and a Bosch pump to be used externally along with a methanol injection kit. All together the package supplied plenty of fuel for 930 rear-wheel horsepower, while still being quiet and reliable to literally drive this car everywhere. In fact, Chris doesn’t even own a truck and trailer.
Speaking of driving, the entire drivetrain was entrusted to RPM Transmissions, who outfitted the C6 with a Stage 7 4L65E transmission conversion and Quiafe differential with 3.42 gears. An FTI triple-disc 3,600-stall converter and more hard parts from The Driveshaft Shop completed the transaction. But to really lay the power down, AMS had to squeeze on a set of 15-inch Weld Racing wheels and sticky Mickey Thompson 275 Pro radials. It took some careful grinding and a set of LG Motorsports spindles to make it happen. QA1 adjustable shocks and a Pfadt rear sway bar (the stock front bar has been removed) were the last pieces needed to make that incredible wheelie shot seen ’round the world.
The Corvette’s first pass ever with the new supercharged setup was a 9.60 despite 95-degree weather and the preceding 60-mile drive. However, by the end of the night Chris dropped a few tenths [for a 9.36]. AMS adjusted the shift points before the next outing, which helped the C6 run a new best of 9.15 at 146 mph. But its final outing was one for the books. Running so close to the 8s, Chris had AMS set the C6 to kill. No more 100-octane, 14 psi of boost … hello, 116 and 16 psi. The result was an 8.92 at 151 mph with a 1.22 60-foot time that yanked the front end sky high on its first and only pass.
If Chris Wargacki’s ’08 Corvette was a blank canvas, then he painted a masterpiece of raw power and streetability. “I don’t need a trailer to take it to the track and can drive it like a regular street car and not a race car. We have over 20 passes in the 9’s and it never skipped a beat.” Considering how high he hangs the front tires, that’s saying something.
|Vehicle:||2008 Chevrolet Corvette|
|Owner:||Chris Wargacki: Chicago, IL|
|Rocker Arms||Stock LS3, 1.7:1 ratio|
|Heads||Advanced Induction CNC-ported LS3|
|Valves||Stock 2.165-inch intake, 1.59-inch exhaust|
|Camshaft||COMP Cams hydraulic roller, Pat G custom grind|
|Ignition||Stock LS3 coils|
|Intake Manifold||Stock LS3|
|Power-Adder||ECS/Paxton 2200SL supercharger, 16 psi|
|Fuel System||Fuel Injector Clinic 90 lb/hr injectors, Z06 in-tank fuel pump with a Bosch external in-line pump|
|Exhaust system||Kooks 1 7/8-inch long-tube headers, X-pipe, stock GM exhaust|
|Transmission||RPM Transmissions Stage 7 4L65, FTI 3,600-stall converter|
|Driveshaft||The Driveshaft Shop aluminum|
|Suspension||Stock C6, QA1 shocks, lowered on stock bolts, LG Motorsports rear spindles, Pfadt rear sway bar|
|Rearend||RPM Transmissions 3.42:1, Quaife differential, stock axles|
|Wheels||Weld Racing RT-S 17x4.5 (front), 15x10 (rear)|
|Front Tires||Hoosier Street Front Runner|
|Rear Tires||Mickey Thompson Radial Pro 275/60-R15|