Hey, car enthusiasts! Get ready to dive into the exciting world of muscle cars, where the Chevelle SS 396 steals the spotlight as an iconic legend, even rivaling the original Pontiac GTO.
This Super Sport variant stands out as a rock star in the mid-size Chevelle lineup, making waves by selling over 66,000 units when it became its own series in 1966.
Let’s unravel the charm of this classic and find out what’s happening with it today.
The Beginning of the Chevelle SS 396
In 1964, Chevrolet introduced the Chevelle, a mid-sized family car, bigger than the Chevy II/Nova but smaller than the full-size Impala/Bel Air/Biscayne.
It was like Ford’s clever move with the Fairlane against the Galaxie and Falcon. The Chevelle, especially with its Super Sport option, became a massive hit.
But it wasn’t until 1966 that the SS 396, with a powerful 400 cubic inch V8 engine, emerged, giving a tough competition to the GTO.
Under the Hood Adventure
Now, let’s take a peek under the hood of the 1966 Chevelle SS 396.
The car mainly had the L35 engine, packing a punch with 325 horsepower. But if you were feeling extra adventurous, you could go for the 360-hp L34 or the mighty 375-hp L78, famously known as the Z16 engine.
Unfortunately, details about the engine’s condition in the showcased vehicle are a bit mysterious. It originally had a 4-speed transmission, but both the driveshaft and the transmission have disappeared over time, making it a perfect candidate for a rebuild.
The Present State of the Barn Find
Fast forward to today, the Chevelle SS 396 is chilling in Five Points, Tennessee, inside an open section of a barn, waiting for someone to give it a new lease on life. You can find it on Craigslist with a price tag of $18,000 or best offer.
Time has left its mark on the exterior, showing signs of corrosion that needs some serious sheet metal work. Inside, things are a bit messy – the carpet and seats have gone missing, adding to the to-do list for restoration.
The Road Ahead
Despite the challenges, there’s hope for the Chevelle SS 396. Even though it hasn’t roared to life in quite a while, a passionate car restorer could breathe new life into this vintage beauty.
The current owner, juggling multiple projects that demand time and money, is willing to let go of the car. So, if you’re up for a challenge, this barn find could be your ticket to reviving a piece of automotive history.
As we uncover the story of the Chevelle SS 396, the big question remains: will this vintage beauty hit the open road again, or will it stay a barn relic?
Share your thoughts below, and let’s start a conversation about restoring this gem, celebrating the timeless allure of muscle cars and the incredible stories they carry. Get ready to be a part of automotive history!