Back in the bad old days of street racing, the serious contenders at the stop light didn’t try and scare off the competition with stripes and big-buck wheels. Unassuming cars with plain Jane paint and a bare minimum of flash were the ones to watch out for. Street veterans knew them as “sleepers” – and muscle fans still get weak-kneed when one heaves into view. Painted in Burnished Brown Poly with a black interior and dog dish wheels, this1:18Auto World Nova rolls like a true sleeper; the lack of decoration makes it appear positively sedate. Look again, however, and the SS badging on the front and rear make those small hairs on the back of your neck stand up. Lift the hood and you’ll come face to face with a beautifully-dressed L78-code 396 V8; featuring chrome valve covers and air cleaner, the moderately detailed engine (with heater hoses, radiator hoses, and brake booster detailing) is looking good. It may not be wired, but what’s here is done really well, indeed.
Ditto the cabin – opening the doors reveals a well replicated interior with period correct front bucket seat, in front of a well-cast and detailed dashboard, floor shifter, and pedals. True to that older mold, this one’s got a sealed trunk; that’s a bit disappointing, but dropping the under-$60.00 MSRP on this sleeper won’t cause anyone to lose any sleep of their own. It’s one for the real muscle fans.