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						G Code Camaro A9
Grandiose Power

G-Code Camaro nails the 1,000 hp mark

By Steve Temple

Photos Courtesy of Ringbrothers

The first-gen Camaro had a fairly modest power output, ranging from a 140 hp straight six to a 210 hp V8. Other V8s available to order ran all the way up to a 325 hp Turbo-Jet 396. Of course, the aftermarket took matters into its own hands, giving the car much more juice for both the street and strip.

Which brings us to the G-Code Camaro from the Ringbrothers, boasting a whopping 1,000 ferocious horses. Debuting at the Royal Purple booth at the 2016 SEMA Show, the car not only produces some serious power, but also stands apart for its unique bodywork, handcrafted carbon fiber elements and an array of Ringbrothers billet products.  

Wisconsin native and G-Code owner Don Atkinson always had a desire to own a 1969 Camaro RS. He loved the design by GM, but he didn’t want just any 1969 Camaro — especially in the power department. He had to have a truly unique, one-of-a-kind Camaro that no one else in the world would have, so he went to Ringbrothers.

The G-Code transformation began with a Chevy LS3 aluminum block heavily modified by Wegner Automotive. This engine builder enlarged the displacement from the stock spec of 376 to 416 cubes, initially by boring out the block and honing it with deck plates.

Handling forced induction from a Whipple twin-screw supercharger, set at a meaty 14 pound of boost using a custom 3 1/4-inch pulley, required a number of upgrades. Wegner had to add ported LSA heads with Inconel valves, plus a new reciprocating mass as well. The hard parts consisted of special MAHLE pistons, dished and coated on the top ring land with an anti-galling compound. Forged Callie rods and a Magnum crank with an LS7 stroke increased the displacement as well.

Even with this sort of power on tap, Atkinson insisted that his Camaro would still be a tractable cruiser, without any bucking and jerking, so Wegner installed a custom cam with less overlap for a smoother driving experience.

This grandiose level of power is not all that unusual for Carl Wagner, who’s been building engines for 42 years. Referring to all the 1,000 hp mills he’s delivered, “We’ve built a hundred of ’em and haven’t had a problem yet,” he says. His commonsense advice on upgrading the output of the LS3: “Don’t fix it if ain’t broke.”

All those rampaging horses run through a beefy Bowler-built TREMEC six-speed transmission and a Centerforce clutch. Lubricants from Royal Purple keep the driveline well oiled. Exhaust expels through a set of custom headers designed by Ringbrothers and then into the custom Flowmaster stainless steel exhaust system. 

But the G-Code isn’t just about straight-line speed. To make sure the car is equally as adept at cornering, Mike and Jim Ring used a Detroit Speed full-suspension setup, including a Hydroformed front clip and QuadraLink rear with AFCO shocks on all four corners.

Given the car’s potential for extreme speeds, massive Baer Brakes six-pot calipers were installed at all four corners with 15-inch rotors in the front and 14-inch rotors in the rear. The Rings worked with the folks at HRE Performance Wheels in California to design a custom set of forged wheels sized at 19x10 in the front an 20x13 at the rear, inspired by the IROC-Z Camaro wheels of the ’80s. They’re wrapped in Michelin Pilot Super Sport tires measuring 275/35/19 up front and 335/30/20 out back.

The cabin of the G-Code Camaro was carefully designed with Atkinson’s comfort in mind, custom crafted by Upholstery Unlimited and kept at the right temperature with a Vintage Air climate control system.

Ringbrothers walked a tightrope with the body of the G-Code Camaro. Mike and Jim Ring wanted to stay within the confines of the iconic traits of a ’69 Camaro, but also wanted to push the boundaries of style to make the car more modern. Every part of the car was customized, including the bumpers and the grille, while the hood was crafted using hand-laid carbon fiber. To highlight the body work, G-Code was coated in a custom BASF Glasurit hue named “Blue Print.”

In the end, G-Code’s owner Atkinson got exactly what he wanted — a contemporary Camaro with a grandiose dose of power. 

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