November '19

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94 THE SHOP NOVEMBER 2019 Clutch," says Will Baty, marketing and R&D at Centerforce in Prescott, Arizona. "This clutch is perfect for vehicles that are making big power and need high holding power, but still want great drivability and control. The TRIAD holds up to 1,100 foot- pounds of torque and is a great option for vehicles that see autocross, drag strips and street and daily driving." These vehicles must have that perfor- mance sound, as well. "As the Pro-Touring market continues to grow, we find consumers begin stuffing late-model engines into a variety of dif- ferent platforms. Hooker Blackheart offers swap kits for first- and second-generation F-bodies, 1973-'87 C10s, Fox-body Mus- tangs, first- and second-generation S10/ Sonomas and popular 1967-'72 Chevy C10 models," says Skylar Drake, creative & technical writer for Hooker Blackheart in Bowling Green, Kentucky. ADDING VALUE Shops looking to serve the Pro-Touring crowd will want to keep an eye on outside factors that can affect the market. Of course, available money to spend on these mean machines will always be at the forefront. "I think the economy has had an impact on the Pro-Touring market," says LaFleur. "It has been positive for all of us in this market segment." A good economy also helps manufac- turers, and that can often equal more parts for owners to choose from. "The aftermarket support for classic cars is so strong and there are so many quality parts and options available to enthusiasts," Baty explains. "You can build yourself a classic muscle car that is just as comfort- able, powerful and reliable as any new car out there." And, these days, it doesn't have to be just a muscle car, Drake adds. "The sheer variety of vehicles being mod- ified is having an effect on the market," he says. "Hooker strives to be a leader in LS swap systems and will continue to expand its reach, as it already offers kits for Fords, Nissans, GM and more." Regardless of the vehicle, it seems any- thing associated with Pro-Touring is doing well, Elam explains. "Some of the largest effects are current market and sales trends," he says. "We have seen a big jump in values of modified Pro- Touring cars compared to their stock coun- terparts. For many years, customers were scared of modifying their older cars due to values. We are now seeing the values of these modified cars surpass some stock vari- ants and more customers are now open to modifying and enjoying their older cars." NEED TO KNOW From product selection to market trends, there's a lot happening in the Pro-Touring realm. Suppliers are eager to clear up mis- conceptions that can affect sales or attitudes. For instance, "in regard to clutches, lighter isn't always better," notes Center- force's Baty. "Choosing the proper clutch and flywheel is crucial; don't over-clutch and don't under-clutch. People buy dif- ferent aftermarket components and expect everything to bolt together without issue." Pro-Touring enthusiasts appreciate shops that understand their needs. (Photo courtesy Lucas Oil Products) Big-power Pro-Touring vehicles demand improved drivability and control. (Photo courtesy Centerforce) Is your shop ready to blend classic vehicles with new technology to create impressive street machines? (Photo courtesy Centerforce) Trucks and SUVs have a place in Pro-Touring as well. (Photo courtesy Hooker Blackheart) The Holley LS Fest is a great place to see some impressive Pro-Touring machines. (Photo courtesy Hooker Blackheart)

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