Saturday, January 23, 2010

Suede & Chrome Feature: The n2a 789

Well, I've seen it advertised in a couple of car magazines, and recently ran across a post on "Just a Car Gals blog (see link in the left column of this site.). Thought I'd google the company who builds the 789 and find out what they are all about. The California based company: n2a builds the 789 and another vehicle called the Anteros. They also have plans to build a 3rd car, "The Stinger" which will have "lines" from the '63 - '67 Corvette. You can read about n2a and all three of their vehicles on their official website at:

Though I'd copy and paste n2a's description of the 789 (named due to the fact that the front looks like a '57 Chevy, the center looks like a '58 chevy, and the rear has the familar "cat eye" look of a '59 chevy.)

"Melding design elements from different Chevy models, the 789 shows the world that you really can’t have enough of a good thing. Although the 789 looks instantly iconic, it is actually the best of three classics mounted atop a Le Mans-winning Corvette C6 chassis. Aptly named for the three years represented in the overall design, the 789 has the "hooded eyes"and chrome grille of a ’57, a mid-section that’s reminiscent of a ’58 Impala and the "bird in flight" rear tailfins of a ’59. These three Vehicles are all instantly recognizable classics celebrated by people around the world.

Owning and operating a classic car often proves difficult. Rarity of parts, expertise needed for installation, and potentially high upkeep or restoration costs are some of the problems with which collectors must deal. All of the money in the world spent to modify or modernize a vintage car will not change the reliability or performance problems associated with it. The 789 offers the best of both worlds: retro looks and styling, and it will fire up every time you turn the key. The body is constructed of lightweight composite panels. We have developed a process of using 80% carbon fiber with 20% fiberglass. This process gives us a light weight rigid part as if it was 100% carbon fiber with the minimal properties of fiberglass that allows for show quality paint and finish.

The customer can either provide us with a donor C6 series (2005-2009) Corvette, which currently retails for around $60,000 (though used models can be had for less), or we can locate one for you. After stripping the ‘Vette of its stock body, we hand-graft the retro body panels over the stock frame, suspension, and massive 440-horsepower, 6.0-liter aluminum-block V8 engine. The base cost of conversion is $80,000, which includes choice of interior/exterior color schemes, specific 789 exhaust, and PST high-performance sway bars. A full range of upgrades are available, including up to 800 hp powertrains, custom suspension, audio/video/navigation systems, interior customization, and more. We will build each 789 to meet the customer's specifications. However, please note that no previously built combination of paint scheme and interior treatment will be duplicated."

0 - 60:  4.5 seconds (stock)
List Price: Coupe = $135,500 , Convertible = $139,500
Engine: 6.2L LS3 V8
Top Speed: 180 mph
Horsepower:  440HP +++
Weight: 3,355 lb. Coupe, 3,385 lb. Convertible
Torque: 440 @ 4600 +++ 
Length: 177.2 inches
Transmission: 6 speed manual or 6 speed auto with paddle shift 
Tires: 245/35ZR-19 front, 285/30ZR-20 rear

O.k....this really doesn't fit the whole "theme" of Suede and Chrome (i.e. being anti billet, anti-high dollar, anti-trailer queen, and pro-home-built), but I admire a U.S. based company with a mission of "reviving the art of American coach building." It's forward thinkers like this that may have an influence on rebuilding the American automotive industry to it's former glory....and once they get the price down to where an average working man could afford them...I'd even be interested in a 789 as a daily driver. :)