The A-Z of Racing Cars


The Cheetah GT V8 was built in 1963 by Bill Thomas, who aimed to build a car with a very high power to weight ratio to beat the new Shelby Cobra's. However, after 25 cars were built, his factory was burnt down, and Chevrolet withdrew their backing.

Chief designerDon Edmunds
Chassis TypeSpaceframe Race Works chassis painted silver and had 9 additional gussetts and were built using 4130 chromoly tubing. They used solid mounts for the engine, transmission and differential. The Seats were stationary while the pedals could be adjusted to fit the driver.
BodyThe first 2 were aluminum, then they were created made using fiberglass with a green gelcoat, and then painted. There were 8 pieces that were joined together.
ModelSourced from a Chevrolet 327. Race engines stroked and bored to 377ci with AMC Studebaker crank and balancer
Type90-degree V8, OHV, 2VPC
Capacity5351 cc / 327
Bore x Stroke101.6 mm (4.0") x 82.55 mm (3.25")
Max Power520 bhp @ rpm
Max Torque475 Nm (SAE) @ 4400 rpm
Compression ratio11:1
Fuel InjectionRochester modified dual meter unit.
Gearbox4-speed manual shift Muncie M21 or M22 RockCrushers.
RatiosI : 2.20:1
II : 1.68:1
III : 1.31:1
IV : 1.00:1
ClutchStandard 327 flywheel with an 8 1/2" clutch, 2200lb. pressure plate, hydraulic throw-out bearing, 26 spline, 6" shaft and u-joint.
Final DriveChevrolet heavy-duty aluminum differential as used on 1962 Corvette Grandsports.
FrontTubular A-arms, Monroe coil-over, adjustable shocks.
RearFabricated tube arms and Monroe coil-over, adjustable shocks.
Brakes (Front and rear)Dual cylinder 11" (279 mm) Chevrolet Nascar drums with cerametallic linings.
Wheels (Front and rear)7 x 15" American Racing Torque-thrust magnesium round spoke
Tyres (Front and rear)Goodyear T-4 race tyres 6.50-6.70 x 15
Steering1962 Chevrolet Station Wagon heavy-duty spindles, Triumph Herald box & rack (Also found on Spitfires). Bell Auto Parts 15 1/2" steering wheel.
Wheelbase90"/2286 mm
Height47"/1194 mm
Width68"/1727 mm
Front track57"-59"/1448-1499 mm
Rear track57"/1448 mm
Ground clearance5.5"/140 mm
Kerb Weight1649 lbs/748 kg

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