Cheetah

In 1964 Carroll Shelby was pretty much stomping everybody on the race track with his brutal Cobras. The Corvettes had not only fallen prey to the Ford powered roadsters, but even Zora Duntov’s Grand Sport program had been cancelled because of the racing ban that GM had. So in a desperate attempt to beat the Cobra’s, GM honcho Vince Piggins met with sports car racer and builder Bill Thomas, and told him Chevy would supply engines and parts if Thomas would build a car that could beat the Cobras. So Bill Thomas hooked up with his lead fabricator Don Edmonds, and they drew up a wild, mid-engine gull-wing door coupe and called it the Cheetah. Since only a handful of Cheetahs were built, you would think it would have disappeared into the fog of the past. But the Cheetah was so unique, so wild, and so stinkin’ fast, that the legend has just continued to grow over the years… and I, like many other gearheads, have always wanted to build one. But instead of just building a replica of the 60’s race car, with all the inherent problems that the original Cheetah had, I have always wanted to do a modern, street legal version of this wild sports car. Fortunately, with the introduction of the Cheetah Evolution cars, it is now possible for ANYBODY to build one of these wild machines in their own garage. The GEARZ Cheetah Project is designed to show what’s involved in building one of these cars, and also showcase some of the cool things that can be done to it.

original manufacturer
specifications

1963-1966

Designed, engineered & built by Chevrolet Performance Tuner Bill Thomas, developed as a competitor to Carrol Shelby’s Cobra

Production Models

used fiberglass bodies & chrome moly steel space frame

1964

Race car rules changed and Chevy advised Thomas they would no longer support the Cheetah project

23 cars

were built to varying degrees of completion & configuration

Partners and Products

Chassis

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Blue Arc Design

Tube Frame

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Henderson Driveline

C4 Corvette Rear Suspension

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QA1

Front & Rear Shocks

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Engine

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ARP Automotive Products

Engine Bolt Kit
Stainless Steel Engine Hardware

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BBR Filters

Max Flow Filter

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Car Chemistry

Exhaust Insert/Baffles

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GM

LSX 454 Crate Engine

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Hilborn Fuel Injection

LS EFI, 4" Ram Tubes, Gravel Guard Filter, Pre-Filter

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Holley

Oil Pan & Universal In-Tank Fuel Pump

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Hooker Headers

LS Swap Mount Plates

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Jet-Hot Performance Coatings

Heat Coating (Bronze) for Headers & Side Pipes

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March Performance

Style Track Serpentine Kit

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Meziere Enterprises

LSX Starter

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Painless Performance

Wiring Harness

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Speedway Motors

Polished Stainless Chevy Motor Mounts

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Stainless Works

Custom Headers & Side Pipes

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Ultimate Headers

Headers & Flange

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Transmission/Drivetrain

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American Powertrain

Hydramax Clutch Kit, White Lightning Gearbox, 6spd Tremec Magnum Transmission, QuickTime Steel Bellhousing

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Interior

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Cal Sales Embroidery

Gears & Cheetah Seat/Dash Logos

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Classic Instruments

American Classic Six Piece Gauge

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Flaming River

Steering Column/Rack & Pinion

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Jason's Custom Trim

Seat & Dash Upholstery

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Kirkey Racing Fabrication

Seats

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Vintage Air

Tiny Gen II Mini AC

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Tires/Wheels/Brakes

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Mickey Thompson Tires

Sportsman S/R
26x10R18
28x12R18

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Schott Wheels

Igniter Wheel
18x9 Front
18x11 Rear

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Vette Brakes & Parts

Rear Brake Calipers

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Wilwood Disc Brakes

Front Brakes, 3-Pedal Assembly

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Body

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Charlotte Speed Shop

Paint and Bodywork

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Cheetah Evolution

Evolution Car
Fiberglass Body, Tube Frame,

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Eckler's

Corvette Taillight Assembly

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Gardner Westcott

Stainless Screws for Body Panel

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Scott Rods

Fiberglass Body

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