Sleeper

2009 Lotus Elise, 366whp Turbo Engine Build

June 1, 2017 in English / Modification Thread / Sleeper

This 2009 Lotus Elise is the feature of a turbo engine build thread on lotustalk.com, which is linked following this story.  Forum member “Baktasht” installed a few mods or two to this client’s car to give it 366whp and 255wtq, making it “faster than a 750whp Supra, faster than a 450whp MR2, faster than a 650whp RX7, faster than a 600whp Corvette, etc… You get the idea”.

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1967 Renault R4 Restoration with Gordini 1387 cc Engine Swap

May 19, 2017 in Engine Swap / French / Home Garage Build / Modification Thread / Sleeper

This 1967 Renault R4 was the subject of a restoration complete with a 1387cc Gordini engine swap, as seen on www.Renault4.co.uk. We have always been big fans of tiny cars, which would be obvious if you follow our posts with any bit of frequency in the slightest. We especially appreciate them when they have been warmed over by enthusiasts who know which parts to pick from their various years of manufacture and then assembles them all together using the most choice pieces, which is exactly the case of this project featured here today. While it would normally be a bit odd to label a car with only 94 horsepower a “sleeper”,  one has to take into consideration that that figure is now more than 3 times the amount of power of it’s original stock 847 cc engine, which makes it quite befitting of the title now, wouldn’t you agree?
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1989 Ford Transit Van with 640 hp Jaguar XJ220 Engine Swap

April 25, 2017 in Engine Swap / English / Sleeper

Being that we are the Car Build Index, it is our mission to bring our readers the most outrageous engine swaps, restorations and projects that we can possibly find. There are a lot of lackluster, uninspiring hack jobs out there, but every now and then we find something that we get excited about which fits the bill perfectly. That being said, it is only appropriate that we now present to you the following 1989 Ford Transit  Supervan. Normally, a plain white van would not be exactly earth shattering to the average car enthusiast, but we are certain that we could change that bleak outlook when we happily report to you that this one was originally a Jaguar factory test mule that is now fitted with a 640 horsepower XJ220 supercar engine…

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1971 Ford Transit Supervan

March 23, 2017 in American / English / General Discussion / Race Car / Sleeper / Video

Oh, okay now this is absolutely glorious. Not so sure this beast could get away with being labeled a “sleeper”, but nonetheless what we have here is a 1971 Ford Transit that is basically a GT40 wrapped in the body of a cargo van. It was built by Terry Drury Racing, who was no stranger to Ford GT40’s, having campaigned them in competition back in the days as a privateer. The “Supervan” had the chassis, along with independent suspension and brakes from the GT40, paired with a mid mounted 400 bhp Gurney Weslake V8 and 5 speed transmission. It first appeared at Brands Hatch on Easter of ’71 wearing typical Ford racing white paint and blue stripe livery and arched wheel flares to cover the wide rims. We’d love to know what happened to it since. Find a period video on the following page…

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1988 Pro Car Alfa Romeo 164

January 25, 2017 in Italian / Race Car / Sleeper / Video

Here’s a car that’s absolutely ludicrous (in a fantastic way) that we never knew existed until we recently ran across it on Jalopnick.com: the 1988 Pro Car Alfa Romeo 164 with mid mounted 3.5 liter V10 Formula 1 engine. Only two were ever built to participate in the Pro Car race series to support F1 Gran Prix races before plans for the series were cancelled because of high development costs. That’s too bad, because we would like to have seen what manufacturers came up with in the 80’s for race cars which used F1 technology but resembled street cars. Sleeper cars is our favorite subject, after all. They had chassis made by Brabham, and a full 620 hp at 13,300 rpm to propel just 1,623 pounds, which is just rubbing more salt into our open wounds. For more self inflicted pain, check out the two videos on the following page…
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Volkswagen Super Beetle Build by APR and VW of America

December 22, 2016 in Engine Swap / Featured / German / Modification Thread / Sleeper

This Volkswagen Super Beetle is a featured build on vwvortex.com by APR in Alabama, linked at the bottom of the page. It was created in collaboration with VW of America, who chose the shop because of their well known reputation for OEM-quality modifications. The goal of this build was to create a monster all wheel drive turbo Beetle that would appear like something that might have come straight from the factory, only slightly altered for performance. They used an AWD system out of a donor Golf R 2.0, and it’s stock 4 cylinder 2.0 Turbo received modifications giving it in excess of 500 horsepower. Naturally, big brakes and suspension upgrades were installed to handle all of it’s new found power.

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Future Collectible Factory Hot Rod: 1987 Porsche 944 Turbo Cup

November 25, 2016 in General Discussion / German / Race Car / Sleeper / Survivor / Video

This 1987 Porsche 944 Turbo Cup car was featured for sale as a BringATrailer.com exclusive almost 3 years ago already, but we still consider it to be one of the finest examples left to exist today. Only 192 of the race cars were built to compete in the worldwide single spec series, this one being 1 of only 9 of those that were imported into the United States by Al Holbert, the head of Porsche Cars North America. From new it was sold to an executive at Escort radar detectors, which just so happened to be the title sponsor for the US series at the time. The absolute holly grail of the 944 Turbo (aka 951) series, we imagine these ultimate factory prepped race versions to be the next highly collectible Porsche on this side of the 911 world and their recent asking and selling prices have been supporting that theory quite well. Let’s take a closer look at this particular example while we glimpse at the differences that distinguish the racers from their street driven brethren.

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Factory Special 1985 VW Porsche Bus: The B32

November 10, 2016 in German / Sleeper

Here’s an interesting vehicle that we never knew existed before, the 1985 VW Porsche B32. Porsche reportedly built up to possibly 15 of these rare 3.2 liter flat 6 cylinder vans, although we are finding conflicting reports which state that it could have been just 10 or 11 total. The concept for the original example was made when the factory wanted a support vehicle for use at the Paris to Dakar Rally when they were racing their 959 in some Group B action. Whatever the reason, we are just happy that this creation exists and can’t believe we have never heard of it before. We have seen VW Bus’s in an assortment of engine swap flavors, normally utilizing Subaru’s boxer engine as a cost effective power upgrade, but we like to keep it in the family and this example is kosher clean. Come take a closer look at it with us on the following page for more details..
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Short Take: Datsun 240Z with Viper V10 Engine Swap

November 7, 2016 in Engine Swap / Japanese / Sleeper

This unsuspecting classic Datsun 240Z was the recipient of an engine swap of all engine swaps, receiving a Viper V10. The low key sleeper looks extremely well built and we have been scouring the internet trying to find any information regarding this car’s build to go along with it’s pictures, but have come up short time and time again. Rather than keep it selfishly to ourselves any longer, we felt that it still had to be shared even without any solid details to go with it. If/when a build thread can be found, we will update it here at that time. Until then, find what pictures we do have on the following page.

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Short Take: Geo Tracker with LS1 Corvette Engine Swap

October 7, 2016 in American / Engine Swap / Sleeper

This Geo Tracker is the recipient of an LS1 Corvette engine swap with a blower on top, no less. Although we don’t have much information about the build, we felt the absolute necessity to include it here since we knew our viewers would appreciate the pure insanity of the whole concept just as much as we did. Does it have to make sense? Not to us when it’s a sleeper build of such epic proportions.

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1968 Ford Mustang BULLITT Movie Tribute Car

September 22, 2016 in American / Engine Swap / Modification Thread / Movie Car / Replica/Tribute Build / Restoration Shop / Sleeper

UPDATE: This car was one of our original features here at CarBuildIndex.com. It just sold at the Bonhams auction in Arizona today (January 16th, 2014) for $88,000, as seen HERE

Original Feature:

This 1968 Ford Mustang Fastback is a “Bullitt” tribute car built by a collaboration between Gateway Classic Mustangs and Year One, as seen on MustangMonthly.com. The Highland Green car was made in 2008 for Steve McQueen’s son, Chad, with the intention of recreating the same character of his father’s original movie car while at the same time utilizing improved modifications that have been developed since the movie’s debut.

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1965 Alfa Romeo Sprint GT with 2 Liter Engine Upgrade

September 21, 2016 in Italian / Reader Submission / Sleeper / Video

This 1965 Alfa Romeo Sprint GT feature is brought to us by CarBuildIndex.com reader, Phil Knudsen. He purchased this tastefully upgraded ’65 earlier this year with Alfaholics.com’s “Fast Road Suspension Kit”, their 14″ alloys, bigger brakes and hydraulic clutch. Regarding the engine, he tells us, “What lies beneath is a wonderful 2L conversion with high compression heads and bigger cams and Alfaholic’s exhaust. This one is for keeps.” We would have to agree.
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BMW X5 with 700 hp LeMans Race Car Engine Swap

September 9, 2016 in Engine Swap / Factory Photos / German / Modification Thread / Race Car / Sleeper / Video

Back in 2000,  BMW picked an X5 right off of their South Carolina assembly line and sent it to their factory in Munich to do an engine swap of all engine swaps…installation of ’99 Le Mans 6.0 liter V12 race engine with 700 horsepower. While the story of this ludicrous SUV has made it’s way around the internet for quite a few years already, we felt an obligation to include it here since it epitomizes what the hobby of car builds is all about. Plus, listening to a Le Mans race engine being wrung out on a track by driving legend Hans Stuck never gets old, even if we don’t understand a word of the German he speaks. Watch him rip it around the Nurburgring in the video on the following page…

2013 Ford Focus ST Build

August 29, 2016 in American / Build In Progress / Modification Thread / Sleeper / Video

This 2013 Ford Focus ST is the subject of a current shop project thread on http://www.focusst.org/index.php by Rally Sport Direct in Utah. The shop bought the car new and set about creating the absolute most comprehensive build thread that we have ever come across, covering each and every modification with before and after reviews of each product, a plethora of pictures for their each and every DIY guides that even included some video, too. This, our dear friends, is how it’s done. The bar has been raised and set to the highest possible level, of which Rally Sport Direct has created the template for how a build thread should be written, no matter what make, model or year of car. Tahhh Dahhh. And now following that grandiose smooch ass build up, how about a little bit about the car…
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Jay Leno’s Mercedes Benz 300 SEL 6.3 with AMG Engine Swap

August 25, 2016 in Engine Swap / German / Modification Thread / Sleeper

While doing a search for an interesting AMG engine swap to feature here, we came across this story that we actually remember reading about a few years back. It involved taking a brand spanking new 518 horsepower, 6.2 liter naturally aspirated V8 engine normally found in the late model E63 and S63 AMG series sedans and transplanting it into a vintage 300SEL 6.3. It apparently already had tallied up around 300,000 miles on it, which we thought we should mention just in case the period-correct police began to turn on their sirens…
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1200 hp 1972 Chevy Nova: The Ultimate Sleeper Build

August 24, 2016 in American / Engine Swap / Modification Thread / Race Car / Sleeper / Video

This 1972 Chevrolet Nova was the subject of a sleeper build by Kurt Urban at Wheel 2 Wheel Powertrains in Michigan for their customer, Dru Diesner. And when we say “sleeper build”, we should really have emphasized that with the much more descriptive word “ultimate” in front of it, because that is exactly what we have here. From looking at it as a casual glance, you would be hard pressed to have noticed anything to give away the fact that this bad boy is generating 1,160 horsepower at 7,500 rpm and 825 lb-ft of torque through use of a twin supercharged LS2. Everything in this build was custom fabricated with the goal of hiding every last bit of it’s true potential. Can you say “bad ass”? This thing just screams of anger management issues, which is exactly why we love it.
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425 hp 2008 VW R32 HPA Turbo Build

August 23, 2016 in German / Modification Thread / Sleeper / Video

This 2008 VW R32 was the subject of a turbo engine build thread on VWVortex.com, which can be found linked at the bottom of the following page. The car had already received a host of proper suspension and brake mods before the installation of their HPA 20th Anniversary Turbo Kit began. We were glad to have run across this one to feature here because we are big R32 fans and this one was tastefully set up by the crew at New Jersey’s Linden VW and HPA, who were both contributing to the thread. Continue on the next page for more detailed info and a boatload more pictures, too…
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VW Golf R 2.0 APR 420 hp Stage 3 Build

August 16, 2016 in German / Modification Thread / Sleeper / Video

This 2010-2012 Volkswagen Golf R 2.0 6 speed was the subject of a sleeper build by the VW/Audi/Porsche and Skoda aftermarket performance experts at APR in Australia. The shop transformed it’s stock turbocharged, 2.0 liter 4 cylinder engine from 271 to 420 horsepower with their Stage 3 kit, and installed suspension and brake mods to help keep a handle on it’s new found power, as well.
We are huge advocates of sleeper builds and this particular VW couldn’t look any more sedate than with it’s plain white exterior color and sticker-less body, which is exactly how we like them. That is part of the appeal of flying under the radar since it’s not about winning stoplight races by surprise for us, it’s about wanting to drive a performance car without looking like a boy racer or poser. Welcome to the land of subtlety, where less is more and self confidence is paramount.
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Alfa Romeo 2000 Spider Veloce Resto-Mod Build by Alfaholics

August 15, 2016 in Italian / Restoration Shop / Sleeper

This Alfa Romeo 2000 Spider Veloce was the subject of a resto-mod build by the U.K. marque experts at Alfaholics. Starting with a tired old donor car, the car’s owner wanted them to build him a track day car that would be as quick and handle as well as their own GTA-R showcase car, a feat which would not be easily accomplished with an open bodied road car. Since we are huge fans of the shop and of Spider Veloces in general, it was only natural that we feature this project car after running across it on-line. Continue with us on the next page as we cover the process that made it possible for them to achieve those lofty goals. Also, don’t miss taking a look at our previous story of an awesome 1970 Alfaholics Step Nose GTA-R resto-mod after this one, which can be seen in “Related posts” at the end…
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