Readers Rides

A Chevy Nova Is Not Just A Nova

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By Mark Weisseg

In the sixties and seventies Chevrolet sold a gazillion Novas.

They started out as cute little boxy six cylinder cars. Two doors or four. No big deal. A reliable car for sure. Toward the end of the 60’s the body style had to change to keep up with the likes of the Mustang.

You could still buy one with a straight line six with a three on the tree or other variations. The sleeker looking Nova’s were beginning to take hold again when GM saw the sales growing. The Camaro was taking hold and doing well, so GM thought ‘what if we stuck a bigger engine in this light weight car?’

Obviously Don Yenko thought it was a good idea and GM acted. Back in the day you could order one of these with a 396 and zing, you had yourself a car to be reckoned with.
I do recall driving and working on many of them. Most guys took these and threw on some chrome wheels, big tires in the rear, and smaller in the front. Then, one would put air shocks on the back and jack up the rear only to make the camber was off.

The car had rusty areas such around the wheel wells and lower door panels. But, with some expert body work or panel work this car could be a hot one. Plenty of trunk room and engine room, even if you had a 396. The interior had head room and leg room to spare for tall people. The Camaro was knocking on the door and eventually took over the Nova but that does not mean the Nova was bad. Just the opposite. The Nova was and is a winner.

Which brings us to where we are today, where the Nova is a fine platform for anything from a stock classic to a fully loaded restomod.
As they don’t cost as much as some of their other muscle car brothers and sisters, you can get a reasonably priced Nova and turn it into your own ‘Death Proof’ vehicle if you so wish.

If you are looking for a way into this hobby any Nova will do.

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A Chevy Nova Is Not Just A Nova, 9.0 out of 10 based on 2 ratings


  1. Ken Young

    Ken Young

    January 1, 2016 at 4:38 am

    I’ve said it once and I will say it again. A nova is not just a car, or a hot car. It is a work of art with more class than any car in it’s class. OERIOD!

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  2. Gary Mueller

    Gary Mueller

    January 1, 2016 at 4:47 am

    Yenko made a few. Nova name went to the grave when they made a front wheel drive nova

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  3. Mike Mcelfresh

    Mike Mcelfresh

    April 9, 2016 at 12:54 am

    Bad ass

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  4. Marvin Reynolds

    Marvin Reynolds

    April 9, 2016 at 1:52 am

    That was a sleeper with the dog dish hubcaps !!!

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  5. Frank Sal

    Frank Sal

    September 15, 2016 at 1:25 pm

    In the 70s back in new york by kennedy airport
    A primed nova named Back Again
    came to run one Saturday night and never lost
    Never saw him again
    One beast of a nova
    Tunnel ram bad ass

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