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Yenko Nova S/C

In creating the Yenko Nova S/C, Don Yenko and his team in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania were testing the Nova’s limits and the insurance companies’ patience.

Yenko devised a program that took the standard 396/375 JH V8 engine and transformed it into an L72 by fitting a 427 block with the existing cylinder heads, carburetor, intake manifold and distributor from the 396. With mild tuning, Yenko effectively made a 450HP L72 for the Nova SS396.1

Much of the rest of the Nova was left stock except for the vinyl tape S/C graphics and a 140-mph speedometer with a Stewart Warner 8000 rpm tachometer.1 The drive line included the SS package’s Muncie M21 4-Speed transmission, a 12-bolt rear axle, heavy duty springs and an anti-roll bar.

Yenko tried to limited color choices to Garnet Red, Fathom Green, LeMans Blue or Rallye Green. He also had very few options on the cars and preferred a rubber-mat interior over carpet. 1

Our feature car was the star at Dana Mecum’s 25th Original Spring Classic Auction. It sold for a $475,000 USD which was a record for a Nova at public auction.


In Detail

type Professionally Tuned Car
built at Canonsburg, Pennsylvania, USA
production 38
engine L71 V8
position Front, Longitudinal
aspiration Natural
block material Cast Iron w/Aluminum Cylinder Heads
valvetrain Pushrod OHV, 2 Valves per Cyl
fuel feed 780cfm Holley 4-Barrel Carburettor
displacement 6997 cc / 427 in³
compression 11.0:1
power 335.6 kw / 450 bhp
specific output 64.31 bhp per litre
body / frame Unitary Steel Monocoque
driven wheels RWD
front tires E70x14 Bias-Ply
rear tires E70x14 Bias-Ply
f suspension Wishbones w/F41 Coilsprings
r suspension 12-Bolt Live Axle w/F41 Leaf Springs
top speed ~193.08 kph / 120 mph
0 – 60 mph ~5.1 seconds


Sources & Further Reading

1.McClurg, Bob. Yenko The Man, The Machines, The Legend. CarTech Books.