Due to a head-on, I can no longer shift. My right hand presses buttons and I can barely shift a column shifter, and I won't be shifting a car again. I could buy a brand new car at this point, but that isn't my style. I've decided to "commission" a classic Chevy and autocross it occasionally for fun. I'll budget $15K-$20K total, at least for the initial build. One way I figure is to pick up a near finished project and have a shop finish it. I just want to autocross as a legal way to flog a car and participate, but I have no interest in beating anyone but the clock. The car will be a daily driver, 1975 or older, power steering, air conditioning, fit my giant dog in the back (no kidding), and maybe Gear Vendors electric overdrive. Several things (size and weight) count against it for autocross, and several might give me an unfair advantage. They might balance out to equal performance, but I certainly don't wish to be viewed as a cheat!
A racing shop found me a 73 GM X-body hatch (exactly what I wanted, with plenty of hatch space), but that car is built to the hilt with no attention paid to SCCA racing classes, and the drivetrain just went elsewhere. It has tubular aftermarket upper and lower A arms, police package steering, smaller steering wheel, plus every upgrade that is allowed, drivetrain is not selected but I will likely buy a crate 383... and the model is heavy and long and I'm not doing anything to change that. Most of the time, that's how I'll get around. I'm retired early. I drive 5K miles a year, and like a sporty ride. I don't think I'll go to enough autocross events to justify a lack of overdrive. Builder wants to use 700R4, but the gearing seems wrong. The rear end has every gear ratio available as replacement parts for $200-$400. I like the idea of a Gear Venders overdrive ($2400?) which can be set up for electric bang shifts between 2.54:1 and 1.9:1, giving me a huge advantage through autocross speeds. I'm not interested in competition except against the clock.
If I get the car made completely safe, can I participate even though I'm breaking class rules for both Street Prepared and Street Modified? Is there a class for such a car? What about other groups than SCCA that would welcome such a modified classic Chevy to a flogging session? There's nothing stock about it, so hardly goes with true classics.
I'm considering buying that car and having the shop pick it up this week. However, I can also let this one go, and get something similar that most likely won't break the rules - and I still come back to what to do about shifting.
Your suggestions are most welcome.