Galant EFFORT

DREW FRIEND’S MITSUBISHI GALANT ‘SKID CAR’ IS NICER THAN MANY SHOW CARS

STORY IAIN KELLY PHOTOS BEN HOSKING

WE KNOW how it is – you go to a car show and get all hepped up to go home and set the world on fire with your own build. That is exactly how Wollongong’s Drew Friend wound up building an awesome LS-powered Mitsubishi Galant. Well, sort of.

What started out as a simple skid-event car became a finely detailed machine that landed him in the Elite Hall Top 60 at Summernats 30.

“I got excited after Brashernats a few years ago and wanted to build a burnout car,” Drew explains. “I’ve always wanted a ’69 Capri but I couldn’t find one. My dad knew of this car, which he worked on years ago and it had already been sand-blasted, tubbed, ’caged and painted, but had gone no further.

“We acquired it and went about rebuilding it – which got out of control. My dad never does things by halves so if it was going to be done it had to be built properly.”

That is certainly the case when you inspect Drew’s Mitsu up close, drinking in all the finishing details. Sure, he might have had good bones to work with, but this coupe has been finished to a very high standard.

The shell has been flow-coated in Baslac Ultimate Green Pearl by Drew’s dad and Steve Bosilkovski. It is a retinajabbing fluoro hue that works well on the tough two-door shape, especially when contrasted by the gloss black details that Drew and his dad have done. Extra attitude comes from the four-inch reverse-cowl, while the windows have been flushfitted for a neater appearance. Amazingly, the ‘Ninja Turtle’ paintwork helps highlight the black 15x4.5 and fat 15x10 Billet Specialties wheels wrapped in 275/60 rubber.

The old single-cam four-banger the Galant came with was never going to get the job done for Drew, so he fitted a 5.7- litre LS1. The light aluminium Chevy proved to be a good thing right up until it dropped a lifter at Powercruise early in 2017, requiring a top-end rebuild. The Gen III small-block now wears a pair of T-Rex CNC-ported heads, and features LS7 lifters, Camtech pushrods, dual valve springs, and a 233/238/110 Camtech camshaft providing womp. Raceworks fuel rails, 1150cc injectors and a Holley ECU handle the E85 and spark, while a Melling high-pressure pump and Moroso rear-hump pan take care of the oil. It’s a solid, basic combo capable of throwing out 357hp at the treads, which is more than enough to make the flyweight Galant a handful!

The coupe runs a Hughes two-speed Powerglide auto, fed torque by a 4000rpm stall converter. The Friends upgraded the tailshaft with Strange yokes and 1350 unis, while the diff is a Strange Pro Case nine-inch, packed with 4.3 gears, 35-spline axles, and a full spool for maximum 11s.

That nine-inch sits on a pair of Pedders leaf springs, with stock-spec shocks moved inboard to clear the 10-inch-wide rears now filling the mini-tubbed rear guards. Drew and his dad also added a rear sway-bar and CalTracs bars to try and keep things pointed straight, while a rack-and-pinion steering system and coil-over shocks live up front, all braked by Wilwood four-pot calipers and discs.

IT THROWS OUT 357HP AT THE TREADS, WHICH IS MORE THAN ENOUGH TO MAKE THE FLYWEIGHT GALANT A HANDFUL

Cars built solely to sit on the limiter and throw belts at events don’t need beautifully finished interiors, but Drew’s Galant has copped a ton of work inside to make sure it is not only gorgeous to look at but functional as well. The Kirkey seats, Auto Meter gauges, eight-point rollcage, SAAS tiller and B&M Stealth shifter tell you it is a car built to go fast, but the flat floors, custom console, trimmed tubs and the quality of the stitch-work on every surface lift the cabin above and beyond pure competition cars.

With such amazing detailing, there was no way Drew would put his car through the hurt locker of a burnout competition, so he changed focus and now has his sights set on ETs and trap speeds.

“Dad took the car to a whole new level, and now it’s too good to be a skid car, so we are going to show it and drag-race it, which I am hooked on!” Drew enthuses. “It has done a 10.65@126mph in its first full pass, so we are now in the process of getting it techapproved so I can go quicker and not get kicked out. We’re also building another motor, which will be an aspirated L98 six-litre Gen IV on nitrous, so hopefully we’ll run a low nine or high eight.” s

DREW FRIEND 1976 MITSUBISHI GALANT

Colour: Baslac Ultimate Green Pearl

DONK

Type: Chevrolet LS1 Capacity: 346ci (5.7L) Cam: Camtech 233/238 Heads: T-Rex CNC-ported ECU: Holley HP Injectors: 1150cc

BENEATH

’Box: Hughes two-speed Powerglide Converter: 4000rpm Diff: Strange Pro Case 9in, full spool, 35-spline axles Front suspension: Cortina steering rack, strut front end Rear suspension: Inset leaves, CalTracs bars Brakes: Wilwood discs (f & r)

ROLL

Rims: Billet Specialties; 15x4.5 (f), 15x10 (r) Rubber: Moroso 275/60 (f), M/T ET Street (r)

THANKS

Friendz Auto Restorations & Blasting; Joe & Jonathon at Profab; Ben at Judd’s Auto Repairs; Dario at DCR Auto Electrics; Simon & Bec at Elite Custom Interiors; Mat at Wollongong Auto Supplies; Troy at Alamo Powdercoaters; Reliance Brakes; Vess Smash; Con at WAS; Kev at Wollongong Windscreens; Steve Hurkett; Steve Bosilkovski; Dave Cornford; Beau Franklin

NOW IT’S TOO GOOD TO BE A SKID CAR, SO WE ARE GOING TO SHOW IT AND DRAG-RACE IT