Muscle Cars

Car Talk: A Steady Eddie, The Bel Air.

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By Mark Weisseg

Could there be a better known classic than this 55 Chevrolet? There are many classics out there, the 57 Chevrolet, a Corvette, the SuperBird, and so on but this beauty is the steady Eddie of the group.

The Chevrolet Bel Air was made between 1950 – 1981. The 50’s versions have the distinctive ’50’s’ look. the fifth generation onwards, 1961 -, started to see the Bel Air turn into more of a muscle car shape, with the sixth gen. cars (1965-) morphing into different models like the Impala and gaining engines up to the 396ci. and 427ci. V8s.

A 50’s classic
We see these ’55 and ’56 Bel Airs all over the place. From original restorations to resto mod classics. There is no shortage of them because they were such great cars. Look at the gamble GM took with the line up. We have this iconic styling, only to switch to the ’57 Chevy that may stand out as one of the most recognizable cars ever. Then, GM turns around and switches styles again in ’58 to a flatter, more conservative style. By wide margins the ’55, ’56 and ’57 need to be crowned as Kings. The crown will be passed around in the years to come but, for this time frame this model year is by far the best.

I have a great friend that has one and is similar to this one featured in color. It is the kind of car that I need to stop and gaze and take in the beauty.
Everyone has an opinion on beauty and elegance but I have yet to find anyone who turns away in disgust. Even the Ford and Mopar guys tip there hat to this iconic car.

As for ideas this car is big enough for that little six cylinder with a three speed or a monster crate engine as there is plenty of room under the hood.
The interior space is plenty and the trunk is big enough for a family of four. This is one of those cars where the gas filler is behind the drivers tail light assembly. Clever idea and always fun to watch a newbie figure it out.

Buy one while you can
A Bel Air seems to be one of the few vehicles that looks great and is respected either in stock form or a fully customised Hot Rod.

So, if you see one for sale and it’s priced right I would say buy it right now. You will never be sorry for buying this classic. It’s still an affordable classic at this point and clearly a winner.

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