Bobby Mahoney rescued this clown ’62 impala from a North Dakota ditch
Life is a series of the darnedest experiences. Southern Californian Bobby Mahoney certainly had his pick of rust-free early ’60s Impala hardtops from here on the West Coast and the great Southwest. Yet he made the decision to rescue this ’62 from a frozen ravine on the Great Plains of North Dakota, 1,500 miles away. It surely must have been fate that saved this extraordinary Bow Tie ride from ruin.
“After getting my Impala home and placing it in the garage, the entire floor pan, both quarter panels, both front fenders and both doors were replaced,” Bobby recalls. “The rest of the car was taken down to bare steel where it sat like that as I began chassis work.” For Bobby, memories of this period are bittersweet because his wife, Corinne, gave birth to twin boys and spare time to work on the car went to zero. Bobby tackled his Impala in sound bites, “twelve seconds here, forty-seven seconds there…” he comments. Although Bobby didn’t get to spend much time in the garage, taking care of twin baby boys allowed him time to think, dream and plan.
“BOBBY WAS GOING TO BUILD A CLASSIC IMPALA LIKE NOTHING ELSE THE GOLDEN STATE HAD EVER SEEN.”
Bobby was going to build a classic Impala like nothing else the Golden State had ever seen. “I set my sights on finding a power plant for my Impala ride,” Bobby reflects, “I considered a new LSX, then learned a buddy of mine was selling his virgin Chevy 350 Donovan block with a steel billet crank.” Bobby took delivery of the Donovan block and sent it off to Vidal’s Polishing for a little shine work. He contacted Tony Mamo at Air Flow Research (AFR) and filled Tony in on his plan. When Tony learned exactly what Bobby wanted to do in terms of a boosted induction, he set Bobby up with 195cc competition ported heads. By the time JGM Engineering finished with this engine, it was an unbelievable mill ready for a real demonstration of power.
FRAME: Black powder coat
SUSPENSION: Moser Ford 9-inch with 35-spline axles and 3.50:1 gears, Ridetech Fox coil-overs, CPP disc brakes front and rear
WHEELS: Raceline Jaded five-spoke, front 18 x 8-inch; rear 20 x 12-inch
TIRES: Bridgestone Potenza, front 245/35-18; rear 315/35-20
ENGINE: Donovan aluminum block 355-ci small-block, Velasco steel billet crankshaft, Manley H-beam rods, SRP forged pistons, AFR 195cc competition heads, custom-ground hydraulic roller cam, Hogan custom sheet metal intake manifold, Accufab throttle body, 120 lb-hr injectors, twin precision 67mm turbochargers, twin precision 46mm waste gates, duo 35 blow-off valves, custom intercooler, MSD pro billet ignition, Spin Tech mufflers, Jones Racing front dress
TRANSMISSION: Turbo 400 transmission, Wenco driveshaft
BODY AND PAINT COLOR: Toyota Prius Blue, Acura Pearl White roof, Ring Brothers hood pins, custom HID headlights and LED taillights, custom billet grille
INTERIOR: Custom seats and Interior by Al’s Boat Shop, Dakota Digital instrumentation
A version of this article first appeared in the Spring 2014 print issue of Maximum Drive