The fourth-gen Camaro might not fit conventional thinking as a classic, but now that Chevrolet is on the sixth generation, in our book, it is. Finding modifications for the fourth gen has always been a trying task, but thanks to companies like Heidts, those parts are finally filling the market.
When Heidts Hot Rod And Muscle Car Parts launched its PRO-G IRS for third- and fourth-gen Camaro and Firebird, it was a welcome addition for Ultimate Street Car Challenge racer Mark Golovin, He was first in line to install one in his 2001 Camaro, aptly named, “Black Betty.”
Mark enjoys regularly competing against later-model cars in the GT Class of the OPTIMA Ultimate Street Car Challenge series. Many of those newer performance vehicles (2010 and later) come standard with an independent rear suspension. That definitely gives them an advantage, as Black Betty’s stock straight-axle setup just doesn’t get the same traction in the corners as those newer vehicles.
“After I spoke with the engineers at Heidts and learned more about the new PRO-G complete IRS and IFS kits for fourth-gen Camaros, I knew it was going to be a game-changer for Black Betty,” Mark stated.
It didn’t take long for Mark to get one installed in his Camaro and he can’t stop talking about the improvement it made to his hot rod. “It’s now a completely different machine,” Mark added. “The PRO-G IRS keeps the rubber on the ground, handles pavement imperfections, and stays planted much better than the straight-axle setup.”
Wanting the ultimate in handling capability, Mark also updated his ride with Heidts PRO-G front suspension, giving Black Betty a totally upgraded suspension setup to improve his Camaro. The PRO-G IFS from Heidts features adjustable, boxed, and fully fabricated lower control arms with the benefit if an internal structure for increased strength. There is also fully adjustable and gusseted tubular upper control arms and fabricated upper arm mounts. Additionally, the tubular front K-member is designed and reinforced to be used for both street and racing applications. It also includes adjustable lower control arm alignment locks.
The complete Heidts PRO-G IRS kit for third- and fourth-gen Camaro and Firebird provides maximum performance – both on and off the track. It’s available in a “standard configuration” (up to 500hp) and high-horsepower (800hp) versions. Options include C4 Corvette rotors and calipers or Wilwood brakes, Currie third-member, and optional ABS hubs.
“We are really excited about this season,” affirmed Mark. “By upgrading to the PRO-G IRS and IFS from Heidts, the car handles like the new and more modern vehicles we compete against. It really levels the playing field, especially in the autocross and road-race segments.”
Mark and Black Betty will compete in four Ultimate Street Car events this season. Most recently was the sold-out Ultimate Street Car Challenge in Bowling Green, Kentucky, where he finished Fourth in autocross. Mark’s first competition this year was at Daytona, where he finished Seventh overall in his class and Fourth in autocross. He and Black Betty will also compete July 7 and 8, at Pikes Peak International Raceway in Colorado, and Aug. 16 and 17 at Road America, OPTIMA’s home track in Wisconsin.
The Ultimate Street Car Association bases points on five segments: Autocross, Design and Engineering, Road Rally, Speed Stop, and Road Course. Each segment has 100 possible points assigned, and drivers use their highest total points from up to three events throughout the season to determine whether or not they receive an invitation to the OPTIMA Ultimate Street Car Challenge in Las Vegas.
If you would like more information about how to upgrade your hot rod with Heidts’ PRO-G line of performance suspension products, visit www.heidts.com