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Like Father Like Son

But With A Touch Of The New Skool

Photography by Mike Harrington

You've heard the saying, "Like father, like son." But how many times is it actually true? For Michael Cooper, that household saying could describe his reason for being, or at least his reason for being into cars.

Since Michael was old enough to comprehend language, he has been hearing his dad speak about the glory days when he got his first car, a '72 SS Nova. Eventually, the stories began to grow on Michael because when he became old enough-as in 12-to really consider what he wanted as his first car, the four letters N-O-V-A came to mind. Shortly after that, he got a '69 Nova SS with a four-speed. But that wasn't what he really wanted, mainly because the car was too rare to cut up. Thanks to the wonderful virtual world of eBay, this '70 Nova ended up in his dad's hands. In order for Michael to create his vision, he knew what had to be done. He traded the '69 for the '70, straight up.

By the time Cooper was 14, he had designed the way he wanted the Nova to be; all that was left to do was build it. A year later, he and his dad hacked in to the Nova. Every bolt and piece was torn down and the car was rebuilt from the ground up. With Cooper growing up in a time where it's all about hittin' switches, the first thing the Nova had to be able to do is lay frame. An Air Ride Technologies airbag and shock was placed in each corner. When completely deflated, the bags allow the 17-inch American Racing Torq Thrust II rims to tuck up into the Wheel wells; it's kind of crazy seeing the classic wheels tucked up in modern fashion. Under the hood, Cooper once again sends mixed emotions. Sittin' atop the '70 350 is a Weiand 177 supercharger with a Carter 750 carburetor, and posted up on the sides of the block are vintage-finned valve covers. However, Cooper once again threw in some new skool technology by adding a Zex nitrous oxide system with a little red go button mounted inside the shell of the Nova.

On the outside of the car, Michael kept it basic, with a DuPont LeMans blue paint job. Although the paint is short, simple, and to the point it fits the magnesium and silver Torq Thrust II's like a glove. Inside the shell of the car, the OEM upholstery was redone in blue and silver vinyl, adding a unique feel to the Nova. Although the Nova may be the same body style as his dad's first car, the finished product is clearly Michael Cooper's new skool vision.

Owner Michael Cooper
Vehicle 1970 Nova
Engine 1970 350 bored 0.60 over by Eason Machine Shop, TRW 10:1 pistons, Comp Cams camshaft, Weiand intake manifold, Carter 750 carburetor, Weiand 177 supercharger, Zex nitrous oxide, Mallory distributor, Hedman headers, Magnaflow exhaust
Transmission 1971 Chevrolet Turbo 400, TCI converter with 2200 stall speed
Rearend Mosier
Suspension  
Front McGaughy's 2-inch drop spindles, Air Ride Technologies airbags and shocks
Rear Air Ride Technologies airbags and shock
Wheels  
Front American Racing Torq-Thrust II 17x7
Rear American Racing Torq-Thrust II 17x11
Tires  
Front BFGoodrich G-Force 205/50/17
Rear BFGoodrich Comp T/A 275/55/17
Body  
Color/Paint DuPont LeMans Blue
Painter Roger Sheffer
Interior OEM upholstered in blue and silver vinyl by Pleasant Vical Auto Upholstery, AutoMeter gauges, B&M shifter
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