Lupini Builds $91,000, 535-horsepower Chevrolet Ute SS for South Africa
No, you can't get it in the U.S. Our South African readers, however, will be happy to know that LupiniPower has a new 535-horsepower Chevrolet Lumina Ute pickup called the SuperUte and it's available for all your awesome needs.
Planted firmly in the too-much-is-just-right camp, Lupini has seen fit to hop-up the already-impressive Chevrolet Lumina Ute SS with an extra 173 horsepower and 190 pound-feet of torque. The extra oomph comes courtesy of a supercharger strapped to the 6.0-liter V-8 and burns up the pavement through a six-speed automatic transmission. With a TractionBar out back to help keep the power planted, Lupini says their SuperUte will knock 1.4 seconds off the zero-to-60 mph sprint, doing the deed in just 4.4 seconds. The rampage continues as the SuperUte blows away the stock Ute SS in the quarter-mile, crossing the line in 12.7 seconds at 113 mph and well ahead of the Ute SS' 14.6-second run at 102 mph. And when the Ute SS runs out of steam at 150 mph, the SuperUte will keep on cruising up to 175 mph.
Extra speed, of course, requires extra braking so Lupini also upped the front discs from 11.4 inches stock to 12.6 inches and added slotting and new four-piston calipers to help get the job done. Progressive springs on all four corners, a one-inch drop in the rear and fat new Bridgestone Potenzas on custom 20-inch wheels help the SuperUte carve as well as it charges. If you're planning to track this beast, you can also add a full Bilstein suspension and a limited-slip differential.
Of course, any yahoo with a wrench and a death wish can make a car faster. Lupini goes above and beyond, they claim, by making the SuperUte cleaner and more efficient than the standard Ute SS. Lupini claims that after all their tweaking, the SuperUte actually eeks out slightly better city, highway and combined fuel economy (less than 1 mpg better in any metric) and produces 10 fewer grams of CO2 per kilometer driven. The cherry on top of this awesome cake is a five-year "Unlimited LupiniPlan Performance Warranty" in its home market of South Africa so you won't bat an eye when Chevrolet tells you that you've voided your warranty. And if, for some odd reason, the Ute just isn't your style, Lupini will sell you an identical upgrade for your Lumina SS Sedan, which they call the SuperLumina.
Naturally, bone-breaking performance doesn't come cheap. A complete SuperUte will cost you a cool 628,975 South African Rand, or $91,500. That's an extra 215,275 Rand ($31,333) over the base price of a standard Ute SS, which runs 413,700 Rand, or $60,166. Import/export and shipping fees, of course, are your business.