Written by Nicole Ellan James
In 1962, the Chevy II hit the U.S. market as a back-to-basics compact family car. At the time, Americans were buying small vehicles, and Chevrolet wanted in on the action. Thus, a star was born.
Because the Chevy II was targeted to compete with Ford’s new Falcon compact, Chevrolet kept the car simple, effective, and inexpensive. It was offered as 2-door coupes, 2-door and 4-door sedans, and station wagons. The Nova was an up-level trim option that was also available in a convertible top version.
Once the muscle car craze took off in 1967, Detroit’s Chevy II evolved into the Nova SS.
Along with its new name, the Nova was equipped with a 350ci small-block engine rated at 295hp, along with a heavy-duty suspension setup and lots of other performance hardware.
Little did Chevrolet know that these cars would be restored, modified and “souped-up” for years to come. Today, Novas are among the most sought-after vehicles by muscle car enthusiasts worldwide.
This 1970 Chevrolet Nova, powered by an LS3 V8 engine rated at 650hp backed by a Stage-7 4L60 automatic transmission, was built by Customs by Bigun for JRi Shocks to debut at the SEMA Show. It’s easy to see why this particular car was nicknamed “Super Nova,” a reference to one of the most powerful astronomical events in outer space.
This no-expense-spared build is equipped with a complete Detroit Speed suspension with JRi Hydraulic Ride Height System and the patented JRi JRide electronic damping control system. For driver convenience, the hydraulics can be adjusted from inside the car with its JRi suspension screen housed in the center console.
Another unique element seen on this stellar Nova is its hydroformed subframe with upper and lower control arms. While it sits on a set of 18-inch 3-piece forged wheels from Detroit Speed, the builder left some room for larger wheel and tire combinations with its 9-inch rear end and 4-link setup with mini-tubs.
When it comes to bringing this beauty to a stop from complete orbit, 6-piston Baer brakes adorn all four corners with 14-inch rotors.
The interior has been customized with an attractive dash highlighting the new LED command center with a Kenwood stereo unit and the suspension screen directly below. The center console is also home to a Lokar shifter.
The seats are from TMI, and a Vintage Air climate-control unit keeps things hot or cool as needed. A Flaming River steering column with a classic 3-spoke wheel, power windows and a full roll cage front to back round out the interior upgrades.
Since its SEMA debut, Super Nova has been repainted in white and given a black side stripe complemented by two black hood scoops.
Custom exhaust, shaved door handles, and recessed bumpers further solidify this car’s star power.
This luminous “Super Nova” is sure to shine when it crosses the block. It will be offered with No Reserve at the 2022 Palm Beach Auction, held April 7-9 at the South Florida Fairgrounds.