Show an automotive enthusiast a ’57 Chevy, and it will elicit many different responses, perspectives, emotions, and stories. Whether the vehicle is all-original, a daily-driver, or an LT-powered conversion like this example from BRP Hotrods, it’s sure to turn heads.
This patina-laden Chevrolet hints at its capabilities with its aggressive, and lowered ride height, aided by a 2-inch drop from Eckler’s lowering springs. It sits on 19 and 20-inch Billet Specialties Bonneville G wheels, wrapped in Hankook Ventura V12 Evo2 tires.
‘“When we first started showing the car, it was just to display our product development,” said Keith Brewer, marketing director of MuscleRods and BRP Hotrods. “The [fans] however, pushed and motivated us to get it completely finished and on the road.”
Don’t confuse this as a “looks only” ride, because, while the original straight-six is long gone, a 5.3-liter L83 LT now rests between the front fenders. Certainly, 355 horsepower by aftermarket standards is not a record-breaker, however what it does, is provide reliable, economical power and fuel economy (it pulled 19 m.p.g. on its first tank). Mated to the L83 is a six-speed automatic 6L80E transmission hooked to the original 3.36-filled rearend.
As far as stories go, the project ’57 Chevy started its most recent version as a display for the company’s latest foray into the LT engine-swap market.
When stripping the car down to the primer, Keith noticed a long history of changes. “Throughout the process, we discovered a few different shades that were laid down in its history.
First was the Colonial Creme, then came the white, and the iconic turquoise on the rear corner. And then, the new metal someone replaced on the door,” he said.
With a bevy of fans encouragement, the company rebuilt the suspension, replaced select items of glass, and completed the showcase drivetrain.
“This year, we have been taking it to shows and having a blast driving it around,” claimed Keith. “It runs and cruises great with plenty of power. It also attracts plenty of attention wherever it goes.”
While the project ’57 Chevy makes the show circuit and continues to be the shop mule, Keith plans to have the car grow with the shop and it’s capabilities as time continues.
“Since we’ve had it more than 20 years, we don’t plan on parting ways with it anytime soon,” quipped Keith. “We look forward to using such an icon to be re-imagined and continuously making new ground in the automotive market for us.”
For more information on the LT conversion kit from BRP HotRods check out their website.
- Builder: MuscleRods and BRP Hotrods
Name: Project ’57
Owner: Keith Brewer
- 2014 L83 LT 5.3-liter V8
Six-speed automatic 6L80E with Lokar dipstick and linkage
Original 3.36-geared rearend
MuscleRod Conversion Kit Components And Upgrades:
- Engine mount and crossmember kit
1 7/8-inch stainless steel long-tube headers
Engine harness and reflashed ECM and TCM
Alternator and power steering pump accessory bracket (LT equipped vehicles have electric power assist)
AC bracket and compressor
Aluminum LT conversion oil pan
Air cleaner assembly
Fuel Tank assembly kit with in-tank 400 LPH pump
Fuel Line kit with regulator
Suspension and Brakes:
- Kyb Gr2 shocks
Energy Suspension suspension bushings
Eckler’s front and rear 2-inch lowering springs
Eckler’s ball joints and steering components
Eckler’s OE power brake kit, lines and components
Wheels and Tires:
- Billet Specialties Bonneville-G and Hankook Ventus V12 Evo2 by way of Newstalgia Wheel Inc.
19×8 245/35R19 front
20×8.5 255/35R20 rear
- Danchuck Steering column conversion
Danchuck side glass, regulators, and armrests
ACC dark charcoal carpet set
- Digitails LED tailights
Delta LED headlights
Custom exhaust exit rear bumper