We hate to break it to you, but TLC's Overhaulin' is fiction (if you already didn't know). Though the idea of tearing down a car and piecing it back together in show-quality condition within a seven-day window makes for great television, it actually happening is nearer to fantasy than reality. The cars showcased on the weekly syndicated show are often in need of nearly a month of fine tuning. Usually with only a single day given for reassembly, the build team (anywhere between 12 and 20 sets of hands) has to prioritize certain functions. Such was not the case with Steve Strope's Pure Vision Petrol Charger.
Steve's handcrafted muscle machines have been featured on TLC's hit series Rides, taken home three Hot Rod magazine Top Ten Cars of the Year awards, had several magazine feature articles, and four previous covers on Mopar Muscle as well as this month's for a total of five.
At his Simi Valley, California, shop, Steve's aptitude at penning a sharp, attractive design on paper and then converting it to reality has been proven time and time again with vehicles such as George Poteet's NASCAR-inspired '68 Charger, the hard-cornering GTX-R '72 GTX, and the wickedly hostile '70 Runner appropriately dubbed the "Hammer" (which made a cameo in The Fast and The Furious: Tokyo Drift).
Provided by Mopar Performance, the 472 gets the Pure Vision treatment with a single-color
Up front, the giant 19x9 meats come to a stop thanks to these Baer 14-inch discs and six-p
Inside, the cabin is exquisitely trick. The dash is from a '71 Charger, with Redline Gauge
It was a TLC's Rides feature on Pure Vision that inspired Petrol Advertising's owners, Alan Hunter, Toby Blue, and Ben Granados, to visit Steve in December 2005. Petrol, a marketing communications agency, is actively developing unique and creative marketing materials for film, television, and video game industries. some of their clients include Universal Studios theme park and film department, Universal Pictures, NBC, the Sci-Fi Channel, HBO, Paramount Pictures, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Sony Computer Entertainment of America, Buena Vista Games (Disney), Atari, and many more.
A '70 Dodge Charger was their vehicle of choice, and the debut's deadline was set for the '06 SEMA show in Las Vegas. Wanting to tap into the rich Mopar history, the iconic B-Body would be an ideal machine to exhibit both Petrol's interests and Pure Vision's craftsmanship. With no time to spare, the Charger was stripped down to a rolling chassis and media-blasted. Once clean, the body was sent to Gold Coast Custom, where the wheeltubs were opened to accept the larger rolling stock, but not before Pure Vision added subframe connectors to keep the unibody from twisting under the torque to come. Gold Coast replaced nearly everything from the door strikers back, including custom fabricating parts that couldn't be found.
Some tweaks were made at an early stage to make the '70 stand out once the build was complete. Taking design inspiration from a Tour de France Ferrari 250GT, the rear valance was pulled and swapped with a '68, eliminating the long, horizontal taillights, and replaced with the first year of the second-generation Charger's thruster-like round taillamps, which allow the vertical stripe to pass between. The dash frame was pulled from the interior and exchanged for a modified and trimmed '71 Charger dash. At the end of its sojourn at Gold Coast, the body was meticulously prepped and straightened, and then coated in several layers of inky black paint; a Hemi Orange stripe was streaked from the wrap-around front bumper to the tail. The bumper was creatively sucked back to eliminate the large rubber gasket and incorporate it into the bodylines.
Steve used the '68 taillamps instead of the factory '70 lights because it was more befitti
Details abound, including the addition of the Petrol logo to the hood-latch brace.
The cockpit was tastefully recovered in black leather by Eric Thorsen and offers all the d
Planting the big B-Body to the earth is a fully customized suspension with Magnum Force tubular A-arms, boxed lower control arms, billet tie-rod sleeves, Fatman Fabrication 2-inch drop spindles, a quick-ratio, power-steering box from Firm Feel, a Hotchkis sway bar, custom Eaton Detroit leaf springs, and a 3-inch inboard spring relocation kit from Mopar Performance. A Flaming River tilt-steering column with a Lokar wheel captains the front 19x8 meats up front, while an aluminum Chrysler 8-3/4 housing with 3.55 gears roasts the rear 19x12 rollers. Big Baer Racing 14-inch discs fore and 13-inchers aft bring the big street machine to a halt with little effort.
While the boys at Petrol considered going high tech with their project car, there is really only one choice when it comes to moving a big Mopar like a '70 Charger, and that's a long-stroke Hemi. Steve made a call to some friends at Mopar Performance and had one of their bulletproof 472-stroked elephants shipped west. The Hemi features an aluminum dual-quad intake with matching Edelbrock carburetors, a street-friendly 9:1 compression ratio, and a .524-lift hydraulic camshaft. He added the Pure Vision touch by painting it an orange hue to match the external stripe. He also added a Vintage Air A/C system and an advanced Billet Specialties pulley system with a serpentine belt.
With a five-speed Tremec transmission from Keisler Automotive poking its long polished lever through the transmission tunnel, the interior is equally as stylish. YearOne supplied the few reproduction pieces that were needed. The carpet, seats, door panels, and wild seat covers were made by Eric Thorsen Custom Upholstery. Using the aforementioned '71 Charger dash, Steve had Redline Gauge Works create one-of-none gauges. Planet Audio not only installed a thumping sound system, Blue Tooth capabilities, and XM satellite, but nearly gobbled up most of the trunk with the radio's amplifiers and bass box. Dynamat sound deadening was laid underneath the carpet to do its best at muffling out the road emanating from the Fast Intentions-built 3-inch exhaust system utilizing Borla Pro X Series stainless mufflers.
Completed, the Petrol Charger debuted at last year's SEMA to rave reviews. Now the darling of automotive and media photographers, the Charger is touring the circuit as the showcase for the Petrol Advertising Agency. expect to see the orange-on-black Charger pop-up in a racing video game or TV show sometime soon.
Fast Facts: '70 Petrol Dodge Charger Rt
Steve Strope Pure Vision-built * Simi Valley, CA
Engine: Provided by Mopar Performance, the 472 crate Hemi sports 9:1 compression pistons, a .524-lift hydraulic cam, iron heads on an iron block, and is topped with an aluminum dual-quad intake with a pair of Edelbrock AFB carburetors. Steve had a pair of tti headers installed and backed by a Fast Intentions-built, 3-inch, H-pipe exhaust system and Borla Pro X silencers. A trick pulley system from Billet Specialties with a winding serpentine belt runs off the steel crank.
Transmission: With five gears to pick from, the Tremec five-speed provided by Keisler Automotive makes the Charger less drag racer and more street machine.
Rearend: The Chrysler 831/44 housing is made from all aluminum and features a trick case and 3.55 gears on a Sure Grip, all thanks again to Mopar Performance.
Horsepower & Performance: The catalog says the 472 is good for 525 hp and 540 lb-ft of torque, but we're willing to bet it's closer to 550 hp.
Suspension: Pure Vision crafted up the boxed lower control arms; custom 3-inch spring relocation perches came from MP; the tubular A-arms came from Magnum Force. A pair of 2-inch Fatman Fabrication drop spindles gives the Charger its stance, as a fast-ratio power-steering box from Firm Feel, a Flaming River tilt column, and Lokar wheel steer the front wheels. A Hotchkis front sway bar and custom-made Eaton leaf springs comprise the rest of the rolling gear.
Brakes: All by Baer, the front discs are 14-inch rotors clamped by a six-piston caliper, while the rear 13-inch rotors get single-piston calipers.
Wheels: Massive Bonspeed 19x9s are upfront and 19x12s plant the tail.
Rubber: Pirelli knows high-speed performance, and their 255/45ZR19s and 345/35ZR19s testify to it.
Body: Once a lowly '70 Charger, it's been stripped, cleaned, and blasted free of any oxidation. The rear light panel was swapped with a '68 to give the Petrol Charger a pair of circular taillamps instead of the long, horizontal lights of the '69 and '70. Inside, the factory dash was exchanged with a '71 Charger, adding to the Pure Vision customized look. Steve also added the Petrol logo to the hood-latch brace and the name to the rear valance using custom-made castings from Motorhead Jewelry. Gold Coast Custom tackled the paint and body work, also adding the subframe connectors and massive wheeltubs.
Paint: The black paint looks miles deep, while the Hemi Orange paint wraps around the front bumper and down the entire length of the body to the tail of the Charger between the '68 lamps.
Interior: While all the restoration materials were kept to a minimum, a large quantity of products came from YearOne including the headliner, weather-stripping, and arm rests. The rest, comprising of the door panels, seat covers, and so on, came from Eric Thorsen Custom Upholstery. But what sound the Dynamat coated floorboards fail to block out, the Planet Audio sound system with massive amplifiers and a giant bass box in the trunk will.