Top 10 twin-turbo LS-powered LC Torana GTR

Rob De Sciscio's BLNKCHQ LC GTR has show-stopping style and enough grunt to run sevens

Photographers: Troy Barker

Everyone’s got their habits, good and bad. Rob De Sciscio from South Australia has a very good one – collecting classic cars around Christmas time!

First published in the February 2024 issue of Street Machine

“During every Christmas break, I have a habit of looking for project cars,” says Rob, who has scooped up quite a few fresh rides over yuletides past, mostly small-bodied Toranas. “I’ve always had a soft spot for the LC and LJ coupes – at one stage I had a shed full of them,” he admits.

This particular 1970 LC GTR popped up during one of Rob’s habitual holiday trawling sprees 13 years ago. It had already been mini-tubbed and fitted with a nine-inch, so he reckoned it’d be easy enough to finish off with a quick LS swap and paintjob.

The first port of call was Zagari Engineering, where the late, great Frank Zagari cringed at the shoddy work that had previously been done and slid the Torry into a jig for a complete do-over. Given this fresh opportunity, Rob went to town. His plans for a neat streeter grew exponentially more insane, as did the list of modifications and go-fast parts.

“Once I made the decision to run twin turbos, the build escalated,” he says. “Coincidentally, that was also when I stopped counting the cost.” Hence the BLNKCHQ rego plates!

The car underwent a process of rigorous modification where the aim was to rework and enhance every aspect without removing any vital strands of LC GTR DNA.

“I wanted to maintain the GTR aesthetic but give it a more refined look,” explains Rob. “This meant no obvious mods from the outside, apart from the massive wheels. I guess this was the ethos for the entire build.”

A three-quarter tube chassis was knocked up with a K-frame adaptation to accommodate the incoming twin-turbo LS donk. Extensive chassis and body alterations include a four-link rear clip, flat floor, and a whopping set of tubs. The firewall was recessed and tweaked, the engine bay was neatened-up, and anything extraneous was deleted.

“A significant amount of work and manipulation has gone into the car to make it look simple and minimalist,” Rob says. “The only panel that wasn’t modified was the roof.”

John Pilla from Powerhouse Engines was entrusted with building the boosted LS, which is based on a stout 440ci Dart Next2 block topped with trusty LSX 6-Bolt LS3 heads. Twin Garrett GTX3582R snails blast through a Plazmaman 102mm billet throttlebody down a Plazmaman EFI billet intake, and all that glorious combustion added up to 1250hp and 737lb-ft when dyno tested.

Everything else down the line has been built extra tough to cope. An Al’s Race Glides Turbo 400 transmission is mated to a custom TCE billet 3000rpm stall converter, which feeds into a sheet-metal nine-inch jammed with a Detroit Truetrac and 3.45s.

To get the package to fit and perform, Rob relied on the collective efforts of Zagari Engineering, Phat Guts Racing and Southern Classics & Customs. Together they worked through the massive list of mods while ensuring that the LC would remain street legal.

Rob thought long and hard about colour before settling on Platinum Silver, and he couldn’t be happier with the finish.

“Typically, all the 70s-era colours are bright, bold and loud, which does suit these cars,” he says. “But I wanted something different; understated yet classy.”

Continuing along these lines, the interior reflects that of a high-end show car with slight race vibes. Here, Adam DeRose from Trim By Mooch applied his creative flair with stunning results. “I wanted the interior to look like it was produced as a two-seater from factory,” Rob says. “Adam delivered way beyond what I was thinking.”

Striking red emblazes all surfaces, including a range of bespoke pieces. Most notable are the rear seat area, flow-through console, door cards and one-piece headlining.

“Even though this car has been modified every inch, I wanted to retain the LC GTR soul,” says Rob. “It’s not until you really look that you start noticing the details. Although once you lift the bonnet, it’s a different story again!”

The top-level finish and devotion to detail nabbed the LC a debut unveiling at the 2022 Extreme Auto Expo in Adelaide, where it promptly obtained a 2023 Meguiar’s MotorEx Superstars invite.

“The unveiling was the first time my wife Nancy and our kids saw the completed LC, and they loved it!” Rob says. “Nancy supported me the whole way and never got pissed off with it or asked any questions on how much I’d spent.”

Next, Rob is eager to get the final engineering tick of approval.

“I’m looking forward to driving and eventually racing it,” he says. “The entire driveline was set up for drag racing. It should run a seven, but will it do it? That will depend on me as a driver.

“To run into the sevens and be 100 per cent street legal, all with an elite-level finish – you can’t ask much more than that.”

As for that Christmas car-collecting habit – has Rob finally kicked it?

“Yes,” he says. “Although I do have a couple of other cars tucked away. But I think I’ll save those projects for a rainy day.”


Rob can’t thank Daniel Eastham from Phat Guts Racing enough. “Daniel was there from the beginning,” he says. “Then, once Frank Zagari fell ill, Dan basically built the car – fabricating custom pieces, doing chassis work, engine bay, driveline, body mods and suspension. He also oversaw everything, including the ANDRA compliance and working with Sot from Speed Garage and MVE for registration requirements.”


Paint:Platinum Silver
Brand:440ci Dart LS Next2
Induction:Plazmaman LS7 billet intake, Plazmaman 102mm billet throttlebody
Turbos:Garrett GTX3582R
ECU:MoTeC M130 with E888 expansion unit and PDM30
Heads:LSX 6-Bolt LS3 heads, ported
Camshaft:Cam Motion hydraulic-roller, custom grind
Conrods:Callies Ultra H-Beam 6.125in
Pistons:JE forged asymmetrical
Crank:Callies Ultra billet 4340
Fuel system:E85, XSpurt 1550cc injectors, three Walbro 525 pumps
Cooling:Ron Davis radiator, twin thermo fans, custom Plazmaman 100mm intercooler
Exhaust:Phat Guts Racing custom turbo manifolds, full custom headers, 3.5in stainless exhaust
Trans:Turbo 400, reverse-pattern
Tailshaft:Custom chrome-moly 3in
Torque converter:TCE billet 3000rpm
Diff:Sheet-metal 9in, Detroit Truetrac, 3.45:1 gears, Race Products 35-spline axles
Front:Custom K-frame, tubular arms, Viking double-adjustable shocks
Rear:Four-link, Viking double-adjustable shocks
Steering:Ididit collapsible column, factory rack-and-pinion
Brakes:Wilwood Pro Series discs and four-piston calipers (f & r)
Master cylinder:Wilwood
Rims:Weld Racing RT-S S71; 18×6 (f), 20×12 (r)
Rubber:Mickey Thompson Sportsman S/R; 26×6.00R18 (f), 29×15.00R20 (r)

My wife Nancy; the late Frank Zagari at Zagari Engineering; Daniel Eastham at Phat Guts Racing; John Pilla at Powerhouse Engines; Adam and Jodi van der Linden and their team at Southern Classics & Customs; Adam DeRose at Trim By Mooch; Troy at Tzee Tuning; Bliss Custom Machining; Bain Racing; Al’s Race Glides; Aeroflow; Rare Spares Adelaide.