Valvoline and Hendrick Motorsports have nabbed two of the biggest names in US auto racing for the entertaining and fun ‘Reinvention Project.’
It pits Dale Jr. versus Jimmie Johnson in a battle of resto-modding wits — five vintage Chevy truck bodies to choose among, and engines up pushing nearly 600 horsepower!
It is both an on-track grudge match with drag racing and burnout contests for the resulting real-life pickup trucks each racer designed himself — a riot of power and semi-politeness among the guys.
The real fun for armchair racers? Playing with the Valvoline custom truck configurator!
Custom car shops could only dream of a custom truck builder this slick and polished. Heck, I bet guys would pay $99,000 at the end of this configurator — if they knew they could really have their exact vision trailered to their house ten weeks later!
Which would you choose?Not just a shown queen either — your Valvoline Reinvention truck must have track moves while making more than 5X its original power.
The picturesque (but antique-handling) 1955 packing the latest LSA V8?
A 1957 with a wider and stronger chassis — but still ox-cart suspension and grip?
A 1965 that has the classic inverted beltline?
My 1968 dream-truck with a 454, air springs and black Eagle Alloy Series 211 wheels?
Or the 1970s Chevy truck icon … that might come with its own mustache and bow-chica-bow-wow soundtrack blasting from the 8-track player?
Overall, a very fun interactive tie-in for Valvoline’s full line of lubricants — run by the title-winning Hendrick Motorsports crew of North Carolina.
Valvoline is also becoming a heavy hitter in the full synthetic market, challenging Mobil1 one performance for every application — from high-miles to racing and the latest, a new SynPower formula for high-performance machines of all kinds.
Official Details below from Valvoline
Reinvention Project Revealed: ValvolineTM unveils Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s and Jimmie Johnson’s classic truck creations
Sprint Cup drivers debut high performance truck builds; go head-to-head in performance challenges
Lexington, Ky. – Valvoline and Hendrick Motorsports today unveiled two completely reinvented, redesigned classic Chevrolet trucks, the culmination of the brand’s first-of-its kind Reinvention Project campaign. After several weeks collaborating with the expert mechanics at Hendrick Performance, Sprint Cup Series drivers Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Jimmie Johnson inspected their finished trucks. The two then went head-to-head in a series of high-energy challenges from autocross to burnouts and even drag racing.
To kick off its new role as the Official Lubricants Supplier of Hendrick Motorsports, Valvoline teamed up with Earnhardt Jr. and Johnson earlier this year to introduce the Reinvention Project. The teammates secretly reinvented their own classic Chevrolet trucks with exacting specifications – from engine and oil, to body and paint, to wheels and suspension – and invited fans to take part by building their own truck in Valvoline’s virtual garage.
“This was so much fun to be a part of from start to finish,” Earnhardt Jr. said. “It was really exciting to see the finished trucks and compare notes with Jimmie on the finer points of our builds. Thanks to Valvoline and the expert craftsmanship from Hendrick Performance, the trucks are incredible.”
“I loved feeling the power jumping off the line during the drag race,” Johnson said. “It’s not often Dale and I get to combine our creativity and passion for cars together into one effort. I can’t think of a better way to kick off our team’s partnership with Valvoline.”
Thousands of participants logged on to the virtual garage at www.ReinventionProject.com, in an attempt to create a virtual build closest to Earnhardt Jr.’s or Johnson’s and snag the grand prize – their own classic Chevy truck. Ultimately, the drivers were thrilled to see their custom rides come to life, putting to work the under-hood expertise of some of the best mechanics in the nation. Their Reinvention Project truck selections include:
- Dale Earnhardt Jr.: In a nod to his birth year, Earnhardt Jr. selected a 1974 Chevrolet Cheyenne Super 10 pickup. The top-of-the-line truck came from an owner in Kansas with just 21,000 miles on the odometer. Its 350 V8 engine and 3-speed automatic transmission were upgraded to a Chevy LS3 V8 – a powerful motor – with 480 horsepower and 4-speed automatic transmission, respectively.
The original fiery red-orange paint remained intact, complemented by a custom grille insert. Flat Black American Eagle Boss 338 wheels and Goodyear high performance tires rounded out the overall nostalgic feel of Earnhardt Jr.’s finished truck.
- Jimmie Johnson: Johnson’s 1955 Chevrolet truck is a true original, coming from its first and only owner in Georgia where it served as a trusty farm truck, equipped with a straight 6 cylinder, 3-speed manual transmission. The selection showcases Johnson’s deep appreciation for the styling and lines of early 1950s trucks. Engine upgrades include a Chevy LS3 V8 with 480 horsepower and a rhino-lined engine compartment.
The original navy blue paint was treated with a flat clear coat to highlight the rustic look of the authentic patina. The truck was lowered a few inches on its gunmetal grey American Eagle Boss 338 wheels and Goodyear high performance tires for a lower stance and bookended with new chrome bumpers.
Valvoline’s full-synthetic product, SynPowerTM motor oil, served as the motor oil of choice by both drivers for the Chevrolet power plants found in each truck. This selection was made to ensure the highest quality and performance capacity to meet the demands of the two high-powered vehicles.
“Pushing ourselves to innovate and reinvent in order to help drivers get the most out of their cars is our mission at Valvoline,” said Heidi Matheys, senior vice president of Valvoline’s Do-It-Yourself Channel. “We are thrilled that we can share that passion in such a fun and engaging way with our fans.”
To see Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Jimmie Johnson go head to head with their trucks, and to find out more about the Valvoline Reinvention Project, visit www.ReinventionProject.com.
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Valvoline, a brand of Ashland Inc. (NYSE: ASH), has been serving American motorists for over 140 years. In addition to commercial and industrial lubricants, the Valvoline family of products includes Eagle OneTM appearance products, Car BriteTM car restoration products, ZerexTM antifreeze, SynPowerTM performance products, MaxLifeTM products created for higher-mileage engines and NextGenTM, created with 50-percent recycled oil. With approximately 900 locations throughout the United States, Valvoline Instant Oil ChangeSM service centers are a leader in serving the quick lube market. For more information, please visit valvoline.com.
ABOUT HENDRICK MOTORSPORTS:
Founded by Rick Hendrick in 1984, Hendrick Motorsports has earned more than 200 race victories and a record 11 car owner championships in NASCAR’s premier division, the Sprint Cup Series. The organization fields four full-time Chevrolet teams on the Sprint Cup circuit with drivers Kasey Kahne, Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson and Dale Earnhardt Jr. Headquartered in Concord, N.C., Hendrick Motorsports employs more than 500 people. For more information, please visit www.HendrickMotorsports.com or interact on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest.
Tom Burkart is the founder and managing editor of Car-Revs-Daily.com, an innovative and rapidly-expanding automotive news magazine.
He holds a Journalism JBA degree from the University of Wisconsin – Madison. Tom currently resides in Charleston, South Carolina with his two amazing dogs, Drake and Tank.
Mr. Burkart is available for all questions and concerns by email Tom(at)car-revs-daily.com.