If you've been keeping an eye on the last few Danger Mouse segments, you've gotten a glimpse of the cool '96 Camaro Z28 that is going to receive the hot LT4 383 stroker the horsepower gurus at Hardcore Racing have so meticulously assembled. If you happened to notice the engine being slipped back "underneath" the car, you may have gotten a glimpse of a trick tubular crossmember. That, my friends, is the new direct bolt-in front clip from Granatelli Motorsports, which not only offers a sturdy mounting point for all the suspension components (in this case the new lower control arms are also added), but it also saves a hefty 68 pounds over the OEM clip in the process.
At Hardcore, once the engine was off the dyno, it was wheeled over to the Camaro's body so that it could be stuffed back up into the chassis. Like most enthusiasts completing similar projects, we used the opportunity to perform the installation, because it was easier with the engine already out of the car.
Because the F-car engine is removed/installed from the bottom, the cradle is bolted to the engine prior to installation, making it a very easy procedure. Hardcore's techs simply bolted up the new K-member, attached the necessary suspension parts, and raised the whole assembly into the chassis. (Those shop lifts sure made the job go quickly, too.)
So, the project is nearing completion, and will be better off because of the added weight savings. As we all know, the better the power-to-weight-ratio, the quicker a car will go.
After the engine/tubular cradle combo was back in place, all the plumbing for the intercooler tubes was routed-not an easy task in the tight confines of the Camaro's chassis, but it all was stuffed in there, mostly inside the front bumper cover. Fortunately, the ProCharger kit is pretty well sorted out, and there weren't too many fitment issues to deal with.
We hope to get the tuning sorted out with the engine in the car and on the chassis dyno at the ProCharger facilities next month. Check back with us to see what happens when we finally put the rubber to the rollers and take advantage of the weight savings from the new Granatelli tubular crossmember.