383ci Cleveland-powered pro street 1971 Ford Falcon XY

Theo Boutsinis’s ballistic Pro Street Ford XY Falcon was 22 years in the making

Photographers: Helmut Mueller

Theo Boutsinis’s ballistic Pro Street XY Falcon was 22 years in the making

This article on Theo’s XY was originally published in the August 2006 issue of Street Machine

THE story of Theo Boutsinis’s Pro Street XY begins with a little conversation that many of us have probably had in our younger days:

Youth: “Good morning, officer.”

Cop: “You’ve got to be kidding!”

Youth: “I’m sorry — what?”

Cop: “Don’t ‘what’ me. Those bloody tyres!”

Youth: “Um, my rubber was worn out so I just borrowed these so I could get to school.”

Cop: “Nice story, mate.”

Cue slapping noise of a defect notice being stuck to the windscreen.

Running a primered XY with 10in Cragars, a pair of Mickey Thompsons out the sides and the remains of the weekend’s fun splattered up the rear quarters tends to have that effect on law enforcement officers.

“I’d been driving the car for about a year when I decided to get serious,” says Theo. “I bought the rims, a GT dash and GT tiller before I had the car. The dash cost me $300, which was a week’s wages back then!”

Theo bought a GXL Fairmont to run around in and the XY saga began in earnest.

“My school friend Peter Heard helped me with the original bare-metal finishing of the body, working nights after tech,” says Theo. “Then another mate, Tim Beris, put the car in primer and I handed it over to Shane Cable for the 12-point cage, three-quarter chassis, tubs and rear suspension.”

Then fate intervened in a big way. Theo was sitting at the lights in his GXL when another car sideswiped him at 70km/h. “Whoever it was pushed me into a power pole and fled the scene,” says Theo. “I lost consciousness from the smoke and woke up in St Alfred’s Intensive Care Unit. The car was a write-off.”

He was lucky not to be a write-off himself but work slowly continued on the XY, with the rear arch moulds stretched five inches by Mark Potter and the yellow paint applied by Ange Zavlanos.

In the meantime Theo needed another ride to get around town in, and he picked up a white XY Fairmont which he named Homicide after the 60s TV show.

“I promised myself I wouldn’t modify it; it was only a six but it didn’t last.” He fitted a set of Center Lines and the audio system salvaged from the GXL before fate intervened again, this time in the form of the boom days of the high-end car audio scene.

“I started reading up on the audio side of things and that took over.”

That’s one way of putting it! Work on the race car ceased as Theo threw himself into putting Homicide at the forefront the Australian car audio scene, with $50,000-worth of gear and a 15-month install resulting in countless trophies and plenty of media exposure.

Theo also did a couple tours of duty boxing in the US, renovated a house and bought a tough RS Z/28 ’69 Camaro as a daily driver before focusing again on the race car.

“Mates were bagging me out, saying: ‘You’ll never finish that thing!’ but I wasn’t bothered. I had other goals for a long time but in the end I was lucky that my mate Bluey Don offered to help me finish it and go racing.”

Hilborn-injected 383ci Clevo has made 650hp on an engine dyno

Bluey not only put in countless hours rebuilding the car, fabricating interior parts, fitting Plexiglas windows, fitting new ’screens and updating the rear end but also donated one hell of a serious driveline. At one stage Theo had a blown EFI 460 ready to slot in the beast but deals were done and the car now runs a serious Cleveland complete with Hilborn injection and a Peterson four-stage dry sump. Bluey stretched the Clevo out to 383ci with an Eagle 3.750in crank, fitted a set of SVO aluminium heads, big titanium valves, an Isky roller cam and a set of Ross forged pistons. On the engine dyno, the motor has seen an average of 650hp at 6500rpm and 560ft-lb of torque.

Behind the mill is a Jericho four-speed manual with a Mr Gasket shifter. Basically an upshift-only ’box, the Jericho is a serious piece of hardware which will ensure the XY is a fun drive. Out back is a braced nine-inch housing with Strange 35-spline axles, a Strange spool and Strange 4.86:1 gears.

Theo knows he’s in for a wild ride.

“I raced my GXL and a couple of other cars years ago but never ran any quicker than a 14,” he laughs. “My Camaro is pretty tough. It’s a 350 crate motor with alloy heads and a roller cam. She makes about 370hp, with 4.10s and a Muncie, but you can’t go from the street to the track in a car like the XY and expect to be able to drive it off the bat. Bluey will run the car first, set it up, then I’ll jump in. I can’t wait!”

With the race car finally done, Theo’s attention is swinging back to his much-loved Homicide car.

“I want to have the best of all worlds with that car this time around. All the good audio is still in it, so Steve Malotsis is repainting it and Bluey is dropping in a 354ci Cleveland with CHI 3V heads. I’d like to run 10s with that one.” See you in 22 years!


Colour: Glasurit Yellow Blaze

Type: 383ci Cleveland
Induction: Hilborn injection
Crank: Eagle 3.750in steel
Cam: Isky roller
Heads: SVO B3
Valvetrain: Del West titanium valves (2.150 in, 1.650 ex), triple springs, titanium retainers, Jesel rockers
Pistons: Ross 12.5:1
Rods: GRP small journal Chev
Pushrods: Crow
Lubrication: Peterson four-stage pump, Moroso tank, fabricated sump
Exhaust: Pro Torque extractors
Ignition: Accel distributor, MSD 7AL 3
Power: 650hp@6750rpm
Torque: 560ft-lb

Box: Ford Motorsport Jericho four-speed
Clutch: 11in lever style, metallic plate
Tailshaft: Thick-wall 3.5in
Diff: Nine-inch braced housing, Strange 35-spline axles, spool, 4.86:1 gears

Front: XY six-cylinder springs, Pedders 90/10 shocks
Rear: Ladder bars, QA1 coils, Koni coil-over shocks
Brakes: Cross-drilled XY rotors, XF coils (f), EL rotors and calipers (r)

Rims: Center Line Auto Drag, 15×3.5in (f), 15x15in (r)
Rubber: Moroso 26.5×4.5 (f), Goodyear Eagle 32x16x15 (r)