he SAC Lumina conversion has turned out to be a huge success, and a project recently completed with Xtreme Machines has confirmed the potential the package will have in the marketplace
SAC dealers now have the opportunity to sell a high-value conversion to customers who own a Lumina fitted with Chevolet’s 5.7-litre V8.
In recent testing by Mark Jones of Xtreme Machines, a Chevrolet Ute upgraded by SAC Holdings proved capable of a 0 – 100 km/h sprint in six seconds! The Ute charges through its six-speed gearbox ferociously, and it will easily reach its 210 km/h electronic speed limiter before the end of the standing kilometre. What is even more impressive is that when given its head, it covers the kilometre in 25 seconds at a terminal speed of 214 km/h and does not stop accelerating until past the true 270 km/h mark!
While there have been some changes since first introduced at the end of 2003 (older versions were rated at 235 kW and 450 Nm) the same basic engine has beenfitted to hundreds of Chev sedans and pick-ups on South African roads, most of them driven by people who like performance. With this conversion, they can now have reliable and refined giant-killing performance.
The conversion is all about helping the engine to use its air/fuel mixture more efficiently, thereby increasing its volumetric efficiency. The following changes are made:
  • Big-valve (increased from 50 to 54 mm) cylinder heads
  • A dual 63 mm free-flow exhaust system with catalytic converters removed
  • Wildcat exhaust manifolds
  • Revised camshaft profile to suit enlarged valves (manual only)
  • A Sportflo air filter element with modified airbox
  • Unichip Piggyback computer
  • Speed limiter removal (optional)
“At the end of the day, this is a very cost-effective way of making a fast car even faster,” comments Steve Fischer ofSAC Holdings. “In modified form the engine is still lightly stressed, and we don’t move the rev-limiter. The Unichip helps us to optimise the fuel and ignition settings to take full advantage of the improved breathing.
“The performance figures show how well this conversion works, and if owners are using their Lumina as a tow vehicle and want more performance without breaking the bank – or having a major detrimental effect on fuel consumption – then this is the answer.” Owners can order this conversion through any SAC branch, with a recommended retail price of R24 995 including VAT.

Performance data, SAC Chevrolet Lumina Utility 5.7 V8

All tests conducted using a Racelogic VBOX GPS-based data acquisition system
SAC Standard
0 – 60 km/h: 2.96 secs 3.63 secs
0 – 80 km/h: 4.51 secs 5.17 secs
0 – 100 km/h: 6.00 secs 6.66 secs
Quarter mile: 14.01 secs 14.73 secs
1 km: 25.38 secs 26.02 secs
Top speed: 275 km/h (limited) 210 km/h (limited)
Test data compiled by Adrian Burford of Roadworks, using Racelogic Vbox Test Equipment.