In the best sense of the word, this ’78 911 is a mutt. Not only does it wear the skin of a 964, but it’s been recently fitted with a 5.3-liter LM7 motor out of—shock and horror—a Cadillac. It’s not the first American motor to be swapped into a Porsche, but it is one of the more extravagant.
However, the current state of the car is drastically—even blasphemously—different than how it’s spent the majority of its life. The car was built in the nineties by famed Porsche tuner Eddie Bello, and up until a few years ago, it sported a built 3.3-liter making somewhere around 650 horsepower.
The car saw its share of meets and drag races, outran some fast imports in its day, and even acted as a seat for a few carshow models back when NOPI was a household name among petrolheads. When the motor started coughing in the hands of its current owner, he took the opportunity to contact Renegade Hybrids, who specialize in swapping GM engines into older Porsches.
The reasons for this swap are clear and should convince the rational that the American V8, no matter how sacrilegious it might seem, has a place betwixt the haunches of a Porsche 911. Not only are these motors cheap and plentiful, but the iron-cast versions, like the LM7, can take astounding levels of boost. Weight differences aren’t so significant they’ll destroy the balance, and the custom fuel cell and front-mounted radiator should help equalize some of that weight imbalance.
Thanks to Renegade Hybrids, the swap is easy; all the ancillaries—cradle, water pump, radiator, and the like— are made to facilitate the swap. Plus, it’s easily accessible, and maintenance can be done by any garage.
The interior is spartan, to put it simply. There are only a pair of Recaro Pole Positions, a custom dash panel with an AIM unit mounted centrally, RS door panels and carpeting, and no creature comforts. In back, a half-cage provides a little more raciness. Clearly, this car is designed to be a laugh and a head-turner, but the stellar build quality is still evident.
On pump gas and seven pounds of boost, the 5.3 motor should comfortably make 600 horsepower at the wheels, and there’s plenty of room left. Unlike certain turbocharged 911s, this one doesn’t plan to be subdued, either. With twin 4″ exhausts, dump tubes, and RS carpeting inside, the experience might require earplugs.