Owner Brandon Brusca

’63 Chevrolet Impala convertible

Torrance, California

Car club
Lifestyle, Los Angeles

Today we are bringing you a sneak peak at Brandon Brusca’s 1963 Impala, “Summer Madness.” This custom engine build shows us how to build a clean engine and engine compartment that is good enough to hang with the best of best. This custom restoration was pulled off the frame and completely restored, leaving no bolt unturned on this classic Chevy. This ragtop was outfitted with its original GM 409 big block motor, which featured paint to match the exterior. To take on the inevitable torque of this “land boat,” the car was equipped with a M22 4-speed Munci transmission. Several bolt on performance items included a custom Algon aluminum intake which is one of 12 known to exist. The direct-to-port mechanical injection was put together by Kinsler Fuel Injection of Michigan, who set up the intake and fuel injection of the car. The spark was provided through a Vertex Magneto distributor, which goes with the era-correct built engine of the early ’60’s. To keep everything on track, a Street and Performance Serpentine pulleys and brackets installation was used.

With all of this performance under the hood, the car had to be upgraded with a fully-chromed disc brake setup. The disc brake set up featured a remote electric booster that provided enough pressure to stop the car on a dime. With chrome and paint on Brandon’s mind, the engine compartment was accented with a triple chrome dosage that can be seen on the valve covers, hood hinges, and throughout the engine compartment, including the core support.

This engine compartment for our From the Hood section caught our attention and the attention of the judges at the Lowrider Las Vegas Super Show, where it took home the award for Best Engine. With that said, we knew we had to photograph it and bring you a sneak peak. So for now, enjoy the teaser of this engine compartment, and look for this car’s full spread in a future issue of Lowrider.

If you feel you have an engine that is worthy of being featured in our From the Hood section, drop us an email at saul.vargas@sorc.com.


  • A Griffin aluminum radiator with dual return outlets and a Flex a Lite dual fan was used to keep the car cool.
  • Performance billet accessories were used for the engine compartment, which in cluded chrome and painted valve covers, and Billet Street and Performance serpentine pulleys and brackets.
  • The complete engine compartment was hard lined with stainless tubing, and a custom radiator hose was built and used to keep the engine compart ment looking streamline.
  • The engine features 11-1/4 compression and runs 100 octane.