Meet the definitive Lumina SS

5 May, 2014 | by Lance Branquinho

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If you required massive pace and space at a very affordable price point Chevrolet’s Lumina SS was always the car to have. And we say ‘was’, because, well, you can’t buy a new one anymore.

Chevrolet South Africa can’t retail you a Lumina anymore, as it was struck off the local inventory late last year. It’s quite sad but inevitable too, exchange rate volatility can be a cruel keeper of car imports.

We won’t tell on the Chevrolet South Africa on-line car configuration no longer listing Lumina. Instead, to best remember the Lumina we present to you the latest work of that doyen of American aftermarket auto tuning, Texan John Hennessey, who has built the ultimate SS. Hennessey’s ode to all things Lumina is called the HPE1000 and as expected: it’s rather mad.

Beyond the carbon-fibre spoilers the thrust (literally) of this HPE1000 project is under its substantial bonnet, where Hennessey’s managed to package two turbochargers and a custom crafted exhaust system. The turbines boost is harmonised by a recalibrated engine management system which produces a rather staggering 755kW from the 6.2-litre V8. That’s more than double what you could get in a factory specification Lumina SS…

There are possible issues, though. Quite how the Lumina’s six-speed transmission or its limited-slip rear differential is going to cope with such a rampant load increase is unclear. In all likelihood the rear tyres will be acting like a clutch of sorts, expensive, sure, but not as dear as replacing transmission bits every month.

All things considered, if you wish to add the ultimate homage car your Lumina collection, this HPE1000 SS is the one.


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