It's a showstopper.
At the SEMA Show 2023, an eye-catching restomod stole the limelight - a stunningly reworked 1958 Chevrolet Apache, owned by renowned Motocross and Supercross racer Eli Tomac. This Apache isn't just any restored classic; it holds sentimental value, being the very truck Eli's father, John Tomac, drove home after his birth. After years of neglect, resulting in rust and wear, the truck has been brilliantly transformed, merging nostalgic value with modern flair.
AutotopiaLA's Mitch Kelly from Crazy Painters Kelly & Son unveiled this marvel, detailing the extensive work that went into reviving the Apache. The truck now sits on a robust chassis from JW Rod Garage, flaunting a striking Marina Blue paint job – a nod to Eli's favorite color on a Chevrolet Corvette. This vibrant hue is tastefully contrasted with gray accents highlighting various exterior elements like the headlight surrounds and rear quarter panels.
The Apache's transformation extends to its wheels, now equipped with Raceline Cheyenne wheels, a significant shift from the traditional smoothie wheels. These wheels are adorned with 265/75R19 Toyo tires in the front and wider 315/35R20 at the rear, enhancing the truck's road presence. Complementing its stance are Wilwood brakes and a three-inch Magnaflow exhaust system, adding an auditory punch to the vehicle's performance.
At the heart of this restomod lies a powerful 7.4-liter LSX 454 V8 engine, which reportedly churns out an impressive 480 horsepower. This engine's power is deftly managed by a six-speed Tremec manual gearbox, transmitting the thrust to the rear wheels through a Ford nine-inch rear end.
Eli Tomac's Apache is more than just a restoration; it's a perfect blend of a racer's legacy and contemporary automotive engineering. The truck's appearance at SEMA 2023 not only showcased the high-caliber skills of its builders but also celebrated the deep-rooted connection between a racer and his cherished family heirloom. This Chevy Apache stands as a testament to how passion, creativity, and craftsmanship can turn a forgotten classic into a show-stopping masterpiece.