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1990 4-door modifications

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I've loaded a few pictures on the Yahoo Group site for Avanti to show some of the recent upgrades I've done to my 4-door. I realize I have the right to bastardize my car as I want, but being sensitive to those who abhor such modifications, I've rationalized my upgrades as needed and "safety" related - although some are stretching that line.

Here is a listing to what I've done as I can remember it. If you have any questions about a particular mod, please feel free to ask about it. That's the joy of being together in this hobby - sharing our experiences. I have to say, these mods have transformed this once sedate heavy sedan into a rip-snorting, road-hugging wonder to drive.

1. Engine upgraded to a SBC 383 with hand polished Edelbrock's Tune Port Induction intake system with 49lbs fuel rail from Corvette, 24lbs injectors, 9.4:1 compression, Crane cam, Keith Black pistons, 1:7 ration roller rockers, etc.

2. Two HD electric fans with variable speed control

3. Aluminum large core radiator

4. 200-4R tranny rebuilt to Buick Grand National standards

5. Eaton posi-traction rear locker

6. Custom HD axles fabricated by Dutchman Axles

7. Corvette Z06 brakes 14" 6-piston front & 13" 4-piston rear

8. Engraved calipers with "Avanti" script

9. New 1996 Impala spindles

10.Custom modified 96 Impala front upper/lower control arms with 5/8" ball joints

11.Custom boxed HD rear lower control arms

12.New rear upper control arms with articulating ball socket

13.1996 9C1 (police option) HD front and rear sway bars with urethane bushings

14.1996 Impala SS front springs (lowers car ~1-2"

15.1990 Caprice HD rear springs with internal air bag set at 35lbs

16.New Bilstein shock front/rear

17.Long tube 1 3/4" headers wrapped with HD ceramic fabric

18.Custom 2 1/2" dual exhausts with "X" crossover

19.Custom built 12:1 ratio steering gears with new pump

20.New billet tie rod ends and new replacement steering arms

21.Custom fabricated front air dam

22.Custom fabricated wheel flares

23.House of Kolors 4-stage paint - Celestial White with crushed glass, blue pearlescent and clearcoat

24.20" Lorenzo 5-spoke custom painted wheels (to match white paint)

25.Pirelli P-Zero tires

26.Cerullo aftermarket seats (retaining all power functions)

27.Sony radio with Bluetooth

28.Infinity Kappa speakers front/rear

29.JBL subwoofer with custom box

30.New seatbelts mounted to B-pillar (taken off front doors)for front seats.

31.New rear seat belts to match front (dark blue)

32.MSD 6A with 6,000RPM limiter

33.Calibrated speedometer

34.New A/C control panel

35.New outside rear view mirrors (motor, mirror and switches)

36.New upholstery on new seats, recovered rear seats and doors to match

37.New carpet

38.Dynamat whole interior

39.Dynaliner sound deadener under carpet

40.Custom fabricated emergency release pulls for hood latches

41.Custom fabricated emergency release pull for trunk latch

42.Removed manual emergency brake and installed push-button servo-controlled emergency brake (finally have room for left foot!)

43.New door molding

44.New side window moldings

45.New black plastic molding on door outside the window opening

46.New electric window motors

47.New rear window molding

48.Windows tinted front/rear and rear window

49.Custom fabricated polished mounting brackets for B-pillar seat belt brackets

50.Custom fabricated bucket seat mounts

51.A/C reconditioned now with R-134

52.Custom fabricated inner wheel liners

53.Battery relocated to trunk

54.Custom wiring harness to whole front end of car/motor

55.New sockets to all exterior lights

56.All lenses polished inside and out

57.Taillight housings smoothed and painted with bright white

58.New bright LED light array installed in stock 3rd light housing

59.New crystal headlight housings with H4 bulbs (HID soon maybe)

60.Installed Gonzo's hood headliner (had to custom cut)

61.Custom fabricated HD transmission cross member

I still need to have the pin-striping done (two thin lines - one black the other blue) with "#78 of 90" inline.



Richard Morris

Renton, WA

1990 Avanti 4-door #78




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Rationalize my arse!! All you did was make a nice vehicle into a really great vehicle. It obviously drives better, stops better, looks better and is a lot more comfortable. What more could one wish for in an Avanti.

The only problem I see is way to few pictures. Nicely done.


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Are you a member of Club Avanti Northwest?

If so, I'd love to see your car in perrson someday.

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Nice job indeed! Those calipers and rotors look great and should easily be seen through those wheels. I've got to believe you've put about another 25K into the car, but it'll look and run like no other 90 4 door Avanti. I thought that I had done a lot to my 76 in the two years that I have had it, more than doubling the original purchase price with engine rebuild and livening up, 200R4 rebuild and install, Turner brakes, brake system rebuild, suspension rebuild, dynomat installed, ac work, radiator work, new radio with XM, invisible bra, new weatherstripping, tires and new Dayton wire wheels. It also looks like some flares have been added to the rear fenders. That's the nicest looking 4 door that I have seen in 3 conventions. Please give us a link to see more pix.

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Thanks. I tried to take pictures as this project evolved. I will put them up on PhotoBucket if I can collect them all - I've used multiple cameras, cellphones, 2 desk top computers and 2 laptops....:-)

I stretched the truth for #36. Although the new Cerullo seats have been installed, my upholstery guy is not yet done recovering them. This month he was diagnosed with skin cancer on his face - going to have it operated on Tuesday, then cosmetic surgery on Wednesday. Maybe a month or more before he's able to finish my car. On a side note, I feel pretty fortunate that when I bought the car from Jim Baize, he had visited the Avanti factory (when they were in Villa Rica, GA) and bought a whole set of leather. This allows me to cover the new seats and make some modifications to the center console and front door panels. I'd like to pass along that the stock seat belts, which are anchored on the front doors, suck! I bought new dark blue ones from Seat Belt Planet and installed the front ones in the B-pillar. That makes it so nice and feels much more secure.

Jim, I am a member of Club Avanti Northwest. It would be nice to have my car at the Greenwood Car Show, but not sure if I can make it. The only car show I usually enter is the Return to Renton Car Show. I did take my 4-door to the Studebaker/Avanti Meet in Spokane - but that was before I started this process and was probably 7 or 8 years ago, I think. Was really impressed with how beautiful downtown Spokane is.

PLWindish, I can relate to all the work/money you've put into your 76. Do you drive it regularly? Good eye on the wheel flares. I have a framed picture of Loewy's clay model his team presented to Studebaker and it had wheel flares. I've seen some ugly wheel flares on Avanti, so I tried to be tasteful with these on the 4-door. For me I like how they turned out. Did you notice that the door handles have been painted (stock were chrome) and that the side molding has been removed from the front and rear bumpers?


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I put all the work into my 76 to make it a reliable driver. I've put 10,000 miles on it since I bought it in January 2011. I've driven it to the past 2 AOAI meets in Gettysburg and South Bend. I'll be driving it to Colorado Springs in June. I don't use it as a daily driver, but manage to put 5 K miles on it from March to December, putting it away during the Chicago winter season. Again, great job and the car. I'm looking forward to seeing the pix when posted.

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Great looking car you should be proud

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