Category: Chevrolet

Corvette as a luxury car? One 1964 ad suggested it – Jeff Koch @Hemmimgs

Corvette as a luxury car? One 1964 ad suggested it – Jeff Koch @Hemmimgs

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America’s personal-luxury car scene exploded in the late ’50s. Studebaker’s Golden Hawk was among the first, back in ’56. Ford’s Thunderbird helped prove the market when the four-seat Squarebird came out in ’58. By 1963, Buick’s Riviera had eased onto the scene, and suddenly most car brands wanted in on this new niche. Chevrolet naturally sought a way to capitalize on the near-luxury-car game, but the Impala was too big (and the ritzy Caprice was coming for ’65 anyway), the Nova was too small, the Chevelle was brand new for the year and just finding its feet, and the Monte Carlo was half a dozen years away.

Why not try it with the Corvette? This ad is trying to convince people to see the Corvette’s softer side. It’s printed in color, but the image is a study in black-and-white contrasts. Black suit, white dress. Black pavement, white Corvette. Black tires with whitewalls. And maybe the ultimate contrast: presenting the Corvette as a luxurious proposition.

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How I staved off the “inevitable” alternator swap for my Corvair by fixing my broken generator – David Conwill @Hemmings

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Cleaned, repaired, and reinstalled. There’s no need to abandon a perfectly functional generator.

If you own a car with a generator, odds are somebody has walked up to you at some point while you’ve got the hood open and asked, “You ever think about doing an alternator swap?”

Well, of course you have—every time a car-show or gas-station expert has offered his or her unsolicited wisdom on the state of your car’s electrical system. If you’re like me, the reason you’ve never decided to swap to an alternator boils down to three reasons: 1) the generator works fine with the existing and planned electrical loads of your car; 2) an alternator is really going to harsh the period look of the engine bay; and 3) why change something that doesn’t really need changing?

My 1962 Corvair was designed and built with a generator, and it still has one (although, as I learned, not the one it was born with). Corvairs from 1965 to 1969 came with alternators (“Delcotrons” in period GM speak). Thus, it’s not that hard to put an alternator on an Early Model Corvair, and when one of the ears on the front end frame of the generator broke off this spring, I contemplated it.

This 1962 Spyder, a recent Hemmings Auctions car, has undergone an alternator swap. A fine change, but one that compromises the “1962” character of the engine bay.

The swap would have involved not only a Corvair-style alternator (which rotates in the opposite direction from most and requires at least a special cooling fan and pulley), but the 1965 to 1969 adapter plate to mount it to the 1962 block, a regulator change, and some wiring modifications. But why? I suppose there’s some weight savings (but I’m neither a racer nor that fuel-economy minded), there’s better charging at idle speeds (but I don’t live in the city or do anything where I’m idling a lot), and there’s the potential for increased amperage delivery (like up to 100 amps, but I don’t have any non-stock electrical additions to the car, and the wiring is probably only designed to handle maybe 65 amps anyway).

No, I decided that because my generator had always generated just fine (and, in fact, even once it was flopping around due to the broken ear, though it continued to do its job, just more noisily), I would simply repair the broken ear and reinstall it. Of course, that wasn’t as simple as it sounds.

Initially, I contemplated epoxying the ear back onto the end frame. Candidly, that might have been the best option, but then a friend who is an expert welder said he could stick the metal back together properly for me. That sounded less rinky-dink than epoxy, so I said okay and tore the generator down so I could send just the end plate for repair. Unfortunately, my friend changed jobs and lost a lot of his free time.

On April 21, I discovered that one of the ears had broken off the front (drive) end frame.

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You don’t find such nice plaid seats in anything but a perfectly preserved 1976 Chevrolet Vega Kammback station wagon – Daniel Strohl @Hemmings

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While it’s a tremendous and important job preserving noteworthy cars—the kinds of cars that get magazine covers and that twirl on the dais at car shows—it’s perhaps equally important from an anthropological view to preserve the everyday cars that, for the most part, get driven into the ground and rarely get restored due to lack of aftermarket support. This 1976 Chevrolet Vega Kammback station wagon listed for sale on Hemmings.com falls into the latter category, kept pretty close to pristine over the years thanks to its Texas upbringing, its decades-long rest in a barn, and a couple preservationists dedicated to cleaning it up and putting it back on the road but leaving as much original equipment on the car as possible. From the seller’s description:

This 1976 Chevy Vega Kammback Estate is truly one-of-a-kind. The car has a Dura-Built 140 4 cylinder engine paired to a 5-speed manual transmission. The car has 34,790 original miles, almost all from the first owner (I have put about 500 miles). After the original owner drove it around Amarillo, Texas for about 9 years (1976-1985), it was sold to an individual who stored it in a barn where it stood untouched for 36 years (1985-2020) with little humidity and no sun light (and luckly no mice!?). I bought it from the person that rescued it in August of 2020. He proceeded to make some repairs (new battery, tires, shock absorbers, spark plugs and wires, and a new exhaust system, among other items), He also cleaned, waxed and buffed the original paint (he specializes in classic car paint), which is in excellent condition. The car has no rust.

When I bought it, it had a couple of scratches along the faux wood trim on both doors, which I repaired, and replaced the entire original factory-installed faux wood trim with the same 3M material used originally. I then proceeded to make 30+ additional repairs to bring the car to its original best. These included among others the following: New radiator, heater core, hoses, brakes, engine mounts, air filter & casing, hood release cable, valve cover gasket, outside mirrors, A/C vents, arm rests, radio & speakers, door rubber gasket seals. All fluids where changed, engine was detailed and undercarriage cleaned. Engine and carburetor were fine tuned. It passed emission tests in Colorado.

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Was this Pinin Farina-and-Tom Tjaarda-designed 1960 Corvair Coupe Speciale a foreshadowing of the 1965 model? – David Conwill @Hemmings

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The Corvair Coupe Speciale by Pininfarina was a 1960 that was restyled repeatedly in the early ’60s. Image courtesy Gooding & Company.

I’m partial to the styling of the Early Model Corvairs (1960-’64), which is widely known to have inspired the designers who penned the 1961 NSU Prinz. Here’s an example of the other way around. Back in 1960, when the Corvair first came out, someone decided they liked the idea of the air-cooled 80-hp, rear-engine, four-speed, swing-axle Chevy, but didn’t like how much it resembled other Chevrolet products and commissioned Italian coachbuilder Pinin Farina (originally named for founder Battista “Pinin” Farina but styled Pininfarina after 1961) to shroud the European-influenced chassis with Euro-style coachwork.

According to Gooding & Company, who are offering that chassis for sale this month in Monterey, that someone was GM Lead Stylist Bill Mitchell, who was seeking a design proposal. What he got back from Italy was the Coupe Speciale you see here, but not in the form you see it. As it was displayed at the Paris and Turin, Italy motor shows and shown on the March 1961 cover of Road & Track, the Coupe Speciale wore a version of this hardtop styling, but with a much more sloped, Porsche- or Citroën-style nose with single round headlamps. It also still wore ’60 Corvair dog-dish hubcaps on steel wheels.

When it first appeared on the show circuit, the Coupe Speciale still had a Corvair windshield and in its second iteration, wore 1961 Monza wheel covers like the ones illustrated here.

After that first show season, prolific automotive designer Tom Tjaarda was called on the reconfigure the coupe as a 2+2. He also redesigned the car’s rear end in a more angular vein, expanded the side windows, and added the car’s now-characteristic ellipse-shaped headlamp housings. In this form, painted dark green and wearing ’61 Monza wheel covers, it was again on the cover of Road & Track, in February 1963. In a final restyling, sometime thereafter, Tjaarda reconfigured the A-pillars to remove the final visual connection to the early Corvair.

Given the lead times required by production and the nebulous dates connected with some of Tjaarda’s remodeling efforts, it’s hard to say how much the Coupe Speciale influenced the styling of the Late Model (1965-’69) Corvair two-door hardtop versus itself being influenced by the direction Chevrolet stylists were already taking, but the resemblance is clear and the efforts of both the great Pininfarina and the legendary Tom Tjaarda make this one special Corvair.

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Chevy S10 Xtreme Wheel Refurb Part Two

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Carrying on from the previous post, some days later we moved onto the rear wheels

As you see these are somewhat wider than the fronts which are 235/60/R15, these are 275/60/R15.

The insides of the wheels were pretty rusty to these got a quick clean up and treatment with silver Hammerite

Once the outside of the rims were cleaned a few coats ofFrost’s High Build Primer were applied

This was followed by a number of coats of Halfords Wheel Silver 24 hrs later

After a further 24 hours several coats of Simoniz Acrylic Lacquer to finish the job

Chevy S10 Xtreme Wheel Refurb Part Three

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Pretty pleased with how the rear wheels came out, playing card masking once again for the wheel silver and the acrylic lacquer.

Whilst I was at it I also refurbed the spare tyre that’s stored under the pickup bed and takes a lot of stick from the road debris and salt.

Used the spare to move the truck around whilst working on the other rims. Quite like the solid wheel look! Used the same high build primer as on the other wheels, decided to use Hammerite direct to rust paint for the final finish with no lacquer. Once done with the other rims the spare was placed back in it’s spot.

Job done!

5 Camaros stolen from GM plant; 9 men face charges

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Nine men are behind bars for allegedly stealing five brand new Chevrolet Camaros from General Motors’ Lansing Grand River Assembly plant.

BRIGHTON, Mich. (FOX 2) – A wild police chase early Monday morning ended with several people arrested after suspects broke into a Lansing-based auto plant and stole multiple sports cars. 

Five stolen Chevrolet Camaros were recovered and nine people were arrested, police said. They’re now face multiple charges including fleeing police and concealing a stolen vehicle. 

State police put out a BOL notice around 1 a.m. Monday for agencies in and around Metro Detroit and Lansing after vehicle thefts were reported on I-96. 

Michigan State Police eventually located five of the stolen vehicles, observing them traveling at a high rate of speed. 

After police attempted a traffic stop, the vehicles failed to stop, prompting the chase. 

According to a Twitter post from police, the stolen vehicles eventually separated into two groups, consisting of two to four cars each. Multiple agencies pursued both groups while they traveled eastbound on I-96 through Ingham, Livingston and Oakland Counties. 

At one point during the chase, police utilized stop sticks to disable the vehicles.

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THE HISTORY OF THE CHEVY SILVERADO – @DePaulaChevrolet

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You may know that the Silverado is one of the most popular Chevy trucks for sale right now, but you might not know that the truck shares its name with a trim level that was first introduced back in 1975. The Chevy C/K pickup and the Suburban SUV both offered a Silverado trim before the name was transferred to the new truck that would take the place of the old C/K.

While facts like these might seem like little more than interesting trivia, they actually help you gain a more complete understanding of the history of the Chevy Silverado, which can help you understand how it has evolved to become the quality truck it is today. Then when you go shopping for Chevy trucks for sale, you have a better appreciation for the value the Silverado offers.

Here’s what you need to know about the history of the Chevy Silverado:

First Generation

The Chevy Silverado was first introduced as a light-duty pickup truck in 1999, with the GMC Sierra as its mechanical twin. The C/K pickups, which the Silverado was meant to replace, continued in production through 1999 and 2000 for light-duty models and heavy-duty models, respectively.

The first generation of the Silverado is referred to as the “classic” body style. It came with three cab styles (a two-door standard cab, an extended cab, and a four-door crew cab) and three bed lengths (short, standard, and long). However, the only options for the first model year were a regular cab and a three-door extended cab. Chevy gave the Silverado a facelift a couple of times during the first generation, including updates to its exterior styling in 2003 and 2006.

Three engine options were available for the first year: A Vortec 4300 V6, Vortec 4800 V8, and a Vortec 5300 V8. Additional options were added in later years: A larger Vortec 6000 V8 and the massive Vortec 8100 V8. All engine options were powerful enough for off-roading and hauling. In 2004, Chevy even introduced a mild-hybrid version of the Silverado, making this legendary truck the first GM hybrid passenger vehicle.

Several variants of the Silverado were offered during the first generation, including a high-performance SS model that was introduced in 2003 and boasted 345 horsepower. A special edition Intimidator SS in 2006 honored Dale Earnhardt, and fewer than 1000 were built, making it a particularly rare version of the Silverado

Second Generation

The second generation of the Chevy Silverado was introduced in 2007, and it received an all-new design and some new engines. The new Silverado got a new interior and exterior, a new frame, and new suspension. Since the production of this generation ended in 2013, these trucks make a great way to get behind the wheel of a Silverado at an affordable price.

The new Silverado offered the same cab configurations as the previous generation, and it came as either two-wheel drive or four-wheel drive. It received the Generation IV small-block V8 engines, and the LTZ trim offered a new high-performance 6.2-liter V8 engine. The entire lineup was more powerful.

The second generation of Silverado was also made to be tougher. The truck received a new frame made of higher strength steel, improving the stiffness of the body by a whopping 92 percent. New rear springs, hydraulic body mounts, and other changes improved the durability of the truck while also improving the ride. The new Silverado could stand up to tough road conditions and carry heavy loads. In fact, the new front axle ratings on the truck allowed the four-wheel drive versions to handle a snow plow as well as tow heavy trailers.

The Silverado’s second generation racked up accolades. It received top safety marks from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, and it was named the North American Truck of the Year and Motor’s Trends Truck of the Year for its inaugural year in 2007.

Third Generation

The current generation of the Chevy Silverado was introduced in 2014, and it saw several improvements while maintaining the same quality that had made it such a success up to that point. With the introduction of the third generation, the Silverado got three new engine options: a 4.3-liter EcoTec3 V6, a 5.3-liter EcoTec3 V8, and a 6.2-liter EcoTec3 V8. They offered 285 horsepower, 355 horsepower, and 420 horsepower, respectively. Buyers can get all the power they need from a used truck with these engines and enjoy improved efficiency as well.

Structural changes were made that increased the strength of the new Silverado, including a steel frame produced with hydroforming technology and a high-strength steel frame in the bed of the truck. The steel used in the bed is roll-formed instead of stamped, reducing weight to improve the performance and fuel efficiency of the truck. Aluminum is also used on the hood, engine block, and control arms to save weight.

Numerous tech features were also added to the third generation of the Silverado. Examples include the MyLink infotainment system with touch screen, Bluetooth technology for streaming music and making hands-free phone calls, an optional Bose premium audio system, OnStar navigation, and USB ports for charging smartphones and tablets. These more modern additions make a used third generation Silverado the perfect choice for the driver shopping for an up to date truck on a budget.

The new Silverado also got its first luxury model, the High Country special edition. This upgraded model included special leather upholstery, subtle exterior styling changes, and special badging throughout. With the 2015 model, the Silverado received a 6.2-liter EcoTec3 engine with an eight-speed 8L90 transmission. The new transmission allows for faster shifting and acceleration and improved fuel efficiency.

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The Ultimate Chevrolet S10 Page – @PartsGeek

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Amid the energy crisis of the 1970s, automobile manufacturers set their sights on designing more fuel-efficient vehicles. Among these was the first compact pickup truck to be built in the U.S. by a “Big Three” automaker, the Chevrolet S-10, which was released in 1982. While this little truck underwent some big changes over the course of its life span, it remained popular for more than 20 years, until it was discontinued in 2004, and to this day, the model still boasts many satisfied owners.

Chevrolet S-10 Through the Years

1982: Chevrolet introduced the S-10 pickup truck to the world. This model was slightly larger than the Chevy light utility vehicle, or LUV, manufactured between 1972 and 1982. However, the S-10 was considerably smaller than the Chevrolet C-10 (5.1 inches narrower, 13.7 inches shorter, and 8.6 inches lower as well as a little less than 1,000 pounds lighter) and was manufactured domestically. This first-year model featured two-wheel drive only. Standard features included a 1.9-liter four-cylinder engine and a four-speed manual transmission. Another option included a 2.8-liter V6 engine. The truck had a bench seat with dual outside mirrors.

1983: Chevrolet kept the outward appearance of the S-10 with the 1983 model, but consumers also had an option for an extended cab with this model year. The 1983 model S-10 trucks were also available with four-wheel drive, and consumers could also opt for a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine.

1984: Again, Chevrolet did not make changes to the body of the S-10. However, a new sport suspension became available for the models with regular cabs and two-wheel drive. Chevrolet also updated the clutch to feature hydraulics instead of the cable included with previous models. A 2.2-liter diesel engine was also made available for two-wheel-drive trucks.

1985: In 1985, Chevrolet decided to change the fender emblems on the S-10. These newly designed emblems featured a big, red “S,” and they were larger than the former badges. The standard engine offered in this year was a 2.5-liter four-cylinder, and it had throttle-body injection.

1986: With the 1986 model year, Chevrolet introduced a new instrument cluster. The 2.8-liter V6 engine models also added the option for throttle-body injection.

1987: The 1987 model year did not involve any obviously visible changes to the S-10, but there was one small tweak under the hood. Chevrolet added a serpentine drive belt to replace the standard V-belts for both the 2.5-liter and 2.8-liter engines.

1988: As time went on, Chevrolet began to expand the available options for the S-10. In 1988, a sunroof would be added to the list of possible features for those seeking to buy one of these pickups. A new 4.3-liter Vortex V6 engine was another option made available in 1988.

1989: Chevrolet began installing standard rear-wheel anti-lock braking systems in every S-10 starting in 1989, a piece of safety technology that had yet to become standard in many vehicle models. This year also featured a special Cameo body package for the S-10, and only 2,198 Cameo vehicles were produced. An electronic instrument cluster was a new option available with this model year, and it included a speedometer and tachometer as well as a voltmeter and gauges for fuel, oil pressure, and engine coolant temperature.

1990: Front tow hooks became standard on the S-10 in 1990. Every four-wheel drive model had a standard 4.3-liter V6 with a Hydramatic-built five-speed manual transmission sporting a fifth-gear overdrive.

1991: The body of the 1991 S-10 was enhanced with new body-side moldings and emblems and a new grille that gave the S-10 an updated and sleek appearance.

1992: Chevrolet introduced a four-wheel-drive entry-level model, dubbed the EL. All four-wheel-drive models except the EL had the option of a new electronic shift transfer case.

1993: Automatic S-10s received a new heavy-duty cooling system, which included an engine oil cooler and a transmission oil cooler. These trucks also had the option for the new 4L60-E Hydramatic four-speed automatic transmission.

1994: After more than a decade, the S-10 was ready for a change, which came with the introduction of the second-generation S-10 in 1994. Features were added that were designed to enhance the vehicle’s comfort, value, and performance. The outside of the pickup truck was modified to have a forward-sloping hood with a wraparound grille. The trucks grew slightly larger, with regular-cab models measuring 63 inches tall, a little more than 17 feet long, and about 68 inches wide. They also had 20 percent more glass than older models for enhanced visibility. The S-10 was available in both a base model and an LS trim model. Two-wheel-drive models featured a 2.2-liter four-cylinder engine, while four-wheel-drive models had a 4.3-liter V6 engine.

1995: Chevrolet made driver’s-side airbags and daytime running lights standard in the S-10 in 1995. Keyless entry was a new option offered in this year. Chevrolet also added backlighting to the switches for windows, locks, and mirrors to make them easier to find in the dark.

1996: The S-10 gained an interesting new option: a third door, on the driver’s side. All models also were updated to feature four-wheel anti-lock braking systems as a standard feature. Chevrolet also introduced the Sportside bed option in this year, which includes rounded fender wells that protrude from the sides.

1997: With attention to enhanced durability, Chevrolet made improvements to the frame and drive train of the 1997 S-10 pickup trucks. The automatic transmission shifter was repositioned to the floor for trucks with bucket seats. Also in this year, Chevrolet produced an electric S-10, the S-10 EV, which is considered to be the rarest S-10 variety ever made. This pickup was 100 percent electric-powered and had a range of about 45 miles after 2.5 hours of charging. The EV was primarily leased to utility companies for use in their vehicle fleets. Between the 1997 EV and an updated version made in 1998, only 492 were made, and around 60 of these were sold. The rest were recalled and destroyed once their leases were up to safeguard Chevy’s technology.

1998: This was a year of new styling enhancements for the S-10. The trucks received new grilles, composite headlights, and front bumper fascia. Dual front air bags became standard, with an option to deactivate the passenger side if desired. Every model also came equipped with the Passlock theft-deterrent system. Chevrolet also revamped the interior of the trucks with a new instrument panel, floor console, and seats. The four-wheel-drive trucks also came standard with rear disc brakes and Insta-trac, which allowed for shifting into or out of four-wheel drive on the fly.

1999: At the end of the decade, Chevrolet rolled out bigger folding rearview mirrors on all of its trucks, including the S-10s. The S-10 Xtreme was introduced, featuring a body that was two inches lower, a special sport suspension package, and a monochrome grille and bumpers. This model also sported 16-inch aluminum wheels.

2000: Chevrolet made updates to the base trim features for all extended-cab trucks in 2000. All four-wheel-drive trucks now came with a standard heavy-duty suspension system.

2001: The four-wheel-drive and automatic-transmission S-10s could now be purchased in a four-door crew-cab version. Four-wheel-drive standard-cab S-10s were discontinued.

2002: All S-10 models had air conditioning and a tachometer as standard features as of 2002. Leather seats were available with crew-cab models.

2003: Additional enhancements available in 2003 models included a power sunroof, bed rails, and graphics on the front fender and doors.

2004: In the final year of S-10 production, Chevrolet offered only a crew-cab 4×4 featuring a 4.3-liter V6 engine with automatic transmission. Chevrolet replaced the S-10 with the Colorado in subsequent years.

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Only at Hershey Will You See a Once-common, Now-rare Car Like This 1926 Chevrolet Superior for Sale on the Street – David Conwill @Hemmings

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1926 Chevrolet Superior V

Hershey is a lot more diverse than it used to be, but the AACA Eastern Fall Meet remains one of the nation’s premier sources for prewar cars, parts, and automobilia. Case in point is this 1926 Chevrolet Superior V, seen in the car corral at the 2021 Hershey Meet. That’s V-as-in-Victory, not V-as-in-five; preceding Superiors were the 1923 Superior B, 1924 Superior F, and 1925 Superior K. While not outstanding in any particular way, it was the stylish, slightly more luxurious Chevrolet Superior that finally drove the utilitarian Ford Model T out of the market and made way for the ever-popular 1928-’31 Ford Model A.

Because of their wood-heavy construction and middling metallurgy, surviving General Motors products from the 1920s are thin on the ground today, especially the inexpensive Chevrolet cars, which didn’t often see second lives as hop ups or long-lived, Depression-era jalopies. In 2022, most pre-1936 Chevrolet cars are found as piles of rusty sheetmetal and occasionally as preserved engines running sawmills or other improvised machinery. Encountering a solid, nearly complete Chevrolet coupe that runs and drives for under $10,000 is a noteworthy experience, then.

Of course, this car was far from perfect, and was said to be a restoration project (started circa 1994) that originated as a barn find. The upholstery was slightly mismatched and appeared to be rodent damaged, though it wasn’t stained and seemed repairable. The exterior looked good at a glance, in period colors with nicely applied pinstriping, but the finish (apparently lacquer, replicating the original Duco) had cracked and lost adhesion in several places. The car boasted only a front bumper, leading us to wonder whether that was a later addition, or if the rear had been omitted since new. Nevertheless, those were cosmetic issues only and minor—easily overlooked on a car that already ran (nicely, even), drove, and stopped.

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