Pro-Touring ’66 Urban Suburban

Recently, more and more people are going the pro-touring route instead of a strict drag- or street car build. Why? You reap the benefits of excellent suspension made for big curves and speed, all while harnessing lots of ponies under the hood. We found this build on and also discovered it was The Roadster Shop that has just begun this classic turned modern day 1966 Suburban.

We have an affinity towards and the amount of Hardcore Chevys bursting at its internet seams. We found a 1966 Suburban build thread by The Roadster Shop out of Mundelein, IL, just outside of Chicago. These guys are the ultimate metal working and fabrication guru’s! They have an incredible 30,000 square foot shop specializing in pro-touring chassis, turn key builds and custom fabrication. That being said, they have all the fun toys to take any piece of metal and turn it into a custom piece of automotive art!

A customer of The Roadster Shop wanted the ultimate California adventure vehicle in order to take his seven foot long board just about anywhere. That in mind, they found a real solid California truck conveniently located in New York. They took the customer’s wants and needs over to Eric Brockmeyer who drew up some designs and threw a few different colors on the design. As the project is still in the works, we will have to wait to find out what color he chose!

The Suburban will endure a heavy amount of restructuring to its body and frame. To obtain the correct stance, the ‘Burb will be dropped enough that the truck will sit six feet behind the front wheel, while a full seven feet in front of the rear wheel.

One of the most fun parts about a total vehicle revamp is tearing it down to nothing and finding out it’s history, panel by panel. The guys over at the Roadster Shop tore the truck all the way down to the frame, which as with any pro-touring vehicle, was trashed in order to put a new, custom fabricated chassis in it’s place. The chassis was even designed through a computer program in order to achieve the customer’s desired ride height.

As with most fabrication shops, they had the entire truck media blasted to begin with a blank canvas. No hidden surprises, right? Unfortunately, once the Roadster Shop began the metal working phase, they discovered some nasty foam filler, which was added at some point during the ‘Burbs life. Once it was removed, the team moved to the task of re-working and refining the fenders, rocker panels and any patchwork had begun.

Each side of the truck’s body was extensively reworked.  the rear wheel openings were even widened to fit large, P305/35/R24 rubber. The front wheel opening didn’t need too much work as with the staggering, it’s only fitting a P295/30/R22 in it.

Rumbling inside the engine bay walls will be something powerful enough to pull what should be around 5,000lbs. The Urban Sub will be getting a massive 572ci engine, fully decked out with an F2 ProCharger. This beach cruiser should be pushing somewhere around 700HP, which seems sufficient enough to get the driver to the next long boarding stop.

One fairly large section of the body on the passenger side was rotting it’s way out so one of the fabricators chopped off that section, only to find the entire inner quarter was filled with the nasty foamy stuff. Once that was cleaned up, they worked on matching the lower bead in the truck’s lower body line. Roadster Shop accomplished this by making a die on a Pullmax to duplicate the delicate lines.

Finally, most of the big metal fabrication was done and they could move on to more intricate parts. The massive 572ci big-block was placed inside after motor mounts were fabricated to fit it inside, the floor was also cut to make clearance for the transmission, the firewall was smoothed and the tailgates were fitted

The shocks on the upper tailgate were pretty shot so they got an upgrade to new gas support shocks.

The hood was ready for some attention. If you know anything about old Suburbans, you know that the front tires have a known clearance issue with a low stance and high tires. Luckily, being in the hands of Roadster Stop, they knew exactly how to fix it. They split the hood, like a modern day car (think the hood doesn’t go halfway down the door, instead the fenders roll up and over where the hood meets, creating a much smaller hood). Doing this, they’ve not only made clearance for the giant 22-inch tires but they’ve also removed other unnecessary and unsightly gaps.

Judging by this build thread, there will not be a single inch of this Suburban that won’t be touched. The thread has turned into a welder’s most wild dream! Hopefully, they will post some more awesome pictures for us to drool over in the very new future. We know we can’t wait to see more of this California truck! Still interested, be sure to check out The Roadster Shop Facebook page, here.

About the author

Stephanie McDonough

Stephanie is an engine builder that has GM blood that runs generations deep and an LS obsession that is literally skin deep. Also known as LSwut, Stephanie discovered a knack for writing when she realized she could write about the cars and engines she loves and hasn't looked back. Much of her free time is spent working on her '98 Trans Am WS6.
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