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1966 Chevy Chevelle SS Suspension - A Detroit Overhaul

This '66 A-Body Was In Dire Need Of Some Suspension Essentials So We Do Our First Install Of The New Chevelle Parts From Detroit Speed & Engineering.

By Mike Ficacci, Photography by Mike Ficacci

Trying not to give too much away, we then assembled both the front and rear brakes courtesy of ABS Power Brake, and put them on the car.

It was then over to the alignment rack, where we made quick work of the Chevelle. Here, we were ensuring that the car will run and drive straight down the road. We were able to adjust both camber and caster using factory shims behind the upper control arm. We were not looking for a performance setup as this car is a street driver but we have the ability to change the setup at will.

Our "before and after" testing showed drastic improvement in every way possible. "I could not have been more pleased with the install of the Detroit Speed & Engineering front and rear suspension. My main purpose for the car is as a driver. I take it everywhere and the improvements in handling and ride quality is absolutely amazing. I no longer have to avoid sewer grates nor grunt when I hit pot holes," said owner Joe Juliano.

Road Course
Our results were much the same as the slalom, but we also have to take braking into consideration here. Body roll was held to a minimum and the tires were holding well. We were using BFG Radial TA's so we didn't expect the car to hold in every corner. The trick was finding the happy medium between sliding the back end around and acceleration out of the corner. To pick up an average of almost 6.4-seconds a lap on this short of a road course is basically revolutionary. Imagine if it had serious tires!

ROAD COURSE RESULTS
  Before After
  49.34 43.21
  49.22 42.96
  49.59 42.81
  49.38 42.99
Average    
Difference   -6.39

Slalom Results
Driving the Chevelle through the slalom, I could feel the body roll so much that I was having trouble changing direction opposite the movement of my body. After our installation, body roll was all but eliminated and I was able to maintain a much faster speed. Now all we have to do it swap out the factory steering box and I'll be in heaven.

SLALOM RESULTS
  Before After
  7.61 7.06
  7.45 6.87
  7.47 6.93
  7.51 6.95
Average    
Difference   -0.56S

SOURCES
ABS Power Brake
714-771-6549
www.abspowerbrake.com
Hillcrest Exxon
Detroit Speed & Engineering
7-04/-662-3272
www.detroitspeed.com
By Mike Ficacci
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