Video: Rod Shop Torana Ferrari V12 swap update

The Rod Shop’s repowered Real Deal LC Torana project is coming along in leaps and bounds


Last month, Castlemaine Rod Shop unveiled a new powerplant for co-owner Heath Waddington’s ‘Real Deal’ LC Torana, in the form of a 5.7-litre Ferrari V12.

Replacing the 1500hp, 565ci big-block Chev sold to Cleetus McFarland for his TOAST burnout car, the Ferrari Scaglietti-sourced donk is a very different beast. Unsurprisingly, this is a swap that’s not been done before, so the Rod Shop boys are essentially going in blind.

In the previous video in the build series, Heath tackled the job of making the hulking V12 sit comfortably in the Torana’s confines. Though the previous episode showed the engine within the bay, it was sitting both too high and on an undesirable offset.

Heath soon discovered this was due to the V12’s offset dry sump fouling against the Torana’s crossmember. This meant some serious cutting was in order, with the middle section of the crossmember removed and a pipe welded in to stop the rails from folding inward.

Naturally, a classic American V8 and modern Italian V12 have virtually nothing in common, so Heath is working to re-jig the Torana’s steering layout. Control arm locations have been shifted and the arms themselves shortened for suitable camber.

To prevent annoying bump steer, the steering rack will also be relocated. The rack support will do triple duty as a chassis brace and bash plate to protect the unobtanium Ferri sump from a grisly fate.

The latest video instalment features Heath performing some surgery on a replacement bonnet. With no repro units available, it’s important to get it right the first time.

The terms ‘Ferrari V12’ and ‘Powerglide’ are seldom used in the same sentence, so the Rod Shop team got to work making a company staple – an adapter plate to mate engines to ’boxes. After measuring up the back of the V12, a prototype adapter was hewn from steel in readiness for a Paul Rogers-built ’Glide.

The Rod Shop gang are working rapidly on the car, so keep a close eye on their YouTube channel for updates.