PwnCall New Reader
8/24/21 10:08 a.m.

Hey all I'm relatively new to the forums here and thought I would share my fathers build that I am documenting.

I have a YouTube series for it which here is the link there are 4 episodes so far the most recent includes the first start of the build.




There isn't much of a fiat X1/9 left, he chopped the front and rear ends off, took 2 inches off the floor and built a full race chassis and suspension.

It will be street legal and will be made for some drag and auto cross/hill climb events.

Weight will be under 2000 lbs and start with the stock as ecotec from a Chevy cobalt as around 240 hp.  He has an LSJ which is the turbo version that he plans to put up to 600 or even 1000+ for drag events.


please post any questions and I will try to answer them!

thanks for welcoming me to the forum!


*I will be updating this post with new pictures*


New series I'm doing on my youtube channel, will be updating on my channel as I can, I'll post videos here as well, adding the first video to the first post,


New to the forums not new to X1/9's. I'm posting a build my father has been working on the past couple years.

Him and his brother used to race them a while ago and we have always had some parts X1/9's in the backyard.


A few years ago we took one of those parts fiats and took a sawzall and chopped the front off just forward of the firewall and chopped the back off just behind the firewall.


That was the shell for the build.  Power plant is a 4cyl ecotec supercharged out of a cobalt SS with a tune I think it's around 300hp.


My father was a fabricator for Roush racing and used this exact motor in some of their fwd drag cars, with different internals, cai, and other mods they can get close to 1000hp from it.


He did all this work himself, fabricating complete rollbars inside and all custom suspension front and rear. He is hoping to get it running this winter.  Should be slightly quick  Here are some pics!



Front Clip

Steering Rack is from a Cobalt, they use EPS which means the rack is all mechanical. Placeholder where the Penske Dampers will be. the front suspension is based off of an old Trans AM car (recycled parts from when my dad was a fabricator for a top Trans AM team). Front spindles are stock Fiat 124 with modifications to increase height and take the NASCAR brake rotors (custom machined billet hubs).


Drivers Side Front

Door bar will have an X, the lower fixed portion (not shown) will be to the rear of the door, and there's a removeable bar that will connect near the bottom of the A pillar, which is not structural itself. There is a roll bar but no 'halo bar'



Drivers Side Rear

Body work here is all for mock up, the finished product will use the standard X1/9 dallara fender flares, all in fiberglass.




Rear Clip

Cobalt SS engine, reliable, easy dry sump kit (tank goes behind driver, fuel tank behind passenger) He used the front spindles from the Cobalt in the rear, with new suspension mounts, as well as NASCAR Speedway brake rotors all around. He is working on a second engine that is turbocharged, he wants to be able to drive to the drag strip on a gasoline cal (≈450hp), switch to methanol, change injectors and calibration, and run with ≈1000 hp.



The structure here is minimal, to save weight, and because all the paneling will act like a monocoque. Seat belt bar is twp pieces crhomoly plus the standard structure. The back panels will be 1/2" honeycomb and bonded in to replace the sheet steel originals.



Cockpit Rough

Rough in of the cockpit, the later images show the panels put in here, but overall everything is really spartan. The dead pedal is stock X1/9, plus some 'speed holes' my dad added.


Main floor

The underbody is a piece of CF and Aluminum Honeycomb, 1/2" thick and bonded / riveted to the bottom of the cabin. My dad is a master craftsman, I'm in awe of the riveting and finish work he's been doing.




Floor Detail





The interior on this is going to be really spartan, with nothing but the bare essentials. The fit and finish is amazing IMO and it's not even completed yet.




Center Console

The shifter is an aftermarket kit, but uses the standard shift cables from the OE engine. There is a reverse lock out in red. The top cover panel isn't made yet, but will extend between the seats.



Console Detail

Cherry-Q rivets are 700lb in shear, good thing there's a lot of them on the seatbelt.



Passenger Seat



Engien Bay Forward

The engine bay / Firewall. The coolant lines run through the tunnel to a fron mounted radiator which will have a waterfall through the hood. Driver's seat back is not removable but passenger seat is to access the fuel tank and starter. My dad decided he wanted to use the stock fly-by-wire throttle, so he mounted the stock throttle mechanism behind the driver's seat, and ran a cable from the X1/9 pedal back to it. He added an adjustable ratio and a teflon guide.



Seatbelt Mount

Detail of the seatbelt mount, there is a full doubler, as well as a steel backing plate. Someone asked about it being strong enough, and I think this shows that it might be.





Rear Suspension



Front Suspension


New Intake location for the supercharger and mass air sensor, mid engine doesn't need an air filter stuffed down below like a FWD




Custom tank


Fuel tank behind driver's seat and modified intake location



view facing rearward from the passenger's seat, Dry sump reservior on the left, just enough room for hte battery on the floor



another angle of the dry sump reservior and intercooler



Custom dry sump pickup and routing


With roof









amg_rx7 (Forum Supporter)
amg_rx7 (Forum Supporter) SuperDork
8/24/21 10:36 a.m.

Pretty cool. Good luck with the build 

obsolete GRM+ Memberand Reader
8/24/21 11:04 a.m.

Cool project. LSJ is the factory supercharged version but a lot of people have success turbocharging them.

Please share some pictures and a summary paragraph with your updates, if possible, instead of just posting YouTube links. If nothing else, it will get more people interested in watching the videos, but posting more than just the links here provides some content for readers who can't/won't take the time to watch a YouTube video.

PwnCall New Reader
8/24/21 11:24 a.m.

In reply to obsolete :

Ok I have some I can upload thanks for the suggestion!

Robbie (Forum Supporter)
Robbie (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
8/24/21 11:48 a.m.

Hi - and welcome!

I'm actually already a subscriber to your channel and have watched the build videos. My suggestion is to get more of the build process and the builder himself. Looks like really great work and I would like to know more about the hows and whys. 

I have a few x1/9s, and am strongly considering an LSJ swap into one of them. ;)

wheelsmithy (Joe-with-an-L)
wheelsmithy (Joe-with-an-L) GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
8/24/21 12:11 p.m.

I felt a disturbance in the force. I'll be tuning in...

Oh, and welcome. Thanks for sharing.


Mezzanine Dork
8/24/21 1:35 p.m.

Dang, nice looking work Dad! I'm eager to see what he does for body work. I hope the side air ports are unique to the car and not just attempting to redo some past body kits. Judging by the size needed, it will have to be one-off! :D


PwnCall New Reader
8/24/21 1:48 p.m.

In reply to Mezzanine :

I believe They will be one off, I don't think any current kits have wide enough openings. Think of like the aventador scoops for example something similar.

gumby GRM+ Memberand Dork
8/24/21 6:27 p.m.

This is why I had to sell my x1/9. Still, I am watching, and will be pirating ideas for another build!

dherr (Forum Supporter)
dherr (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand Dork
8/24/21 7:54 p.m.

And this is why I bought my X1/9, as I can watch all these projects and then decide on what I want to do with mine in the future. Subscribed, will be interested in where this project ends up but since your dad is a pro fabricator, his skill set is beyond my abilities for sure!

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