Engine: 454/365 HP
Just one year after it rocked the muscle-car world, the legendary LS6 454/450 HP V-8 was history, but big-block Chevelles still packed a colossal wallop. The LS5 was the only 454 option for 1971, with 9.0:1 compression and rated under the new system at 365 horsepower. That was still a 5-horsepower increase from the 1970 LS5, and it made the Chevelle capable of zero to 60 MPH in 6.0 seconds and a 14.35-second quarter-mile at 97 MPH on stock tires. Restored in frame-off fashion by former Corvette racer Bob Phelps of Addison, Michigan, this 1971 Chevrolet Chevelle SS454 convertible was tweaked in the process with a well-chosen array of enhancements intended to improve both cosmetics and performance. It starts with a laser-straight body presenting in the classic combination of red paint with contrasting white sport stripes and white top. Custom cream upholstery is used inside on the bucket seats, console, trim and steering wheel rim, joining tilt steering, factory air condioning, Soft Ray-tinted glass with power windows, a Pioneer sound system and a Covan’s carbon-fiber dash insert with Auto Meter gauges in the tastefully customized interior.
The 454/365 HP big-block under the cowl-induction hood is a matching-numbers unit fitted with jet-coated dual exhaust. The transmission is a 4-speed 700R4 automatic driving a Drive Train Specialties-built Ford 9-inch rear end that has been narrowed to make room for the car’s huge BF Goodrich Radial T/A tires on deep-dish American Racing Torque Thrust wheels. Like all restorations from the shop of Phelps Motorsports, this SS454 convertible will not only take you for a great ride; it will transport you back to the days when big cubic inches ruled the street and strip.