The second generation Chevelle in 1968 was completely redone and on a three inch shorter 112 inch wheel base for the coupe and sedan models. The wagons and sedans are on a one inch longer 116 inch wheel base. The ’68 has a long hood with tapered fenders while the trunk lid is shorter with the rear fenders kicked up. The hard top coupes have a flowing roof line onto a long slopped rear window. The two door models are now either coupes, sport coupes, or pillared coupes while a sedan is equipped with four doors.
The upscale models, the SS 396 and the new luxury Concours had hidden wipers but the basic models would have to wait another year or two for those. The SS 396 was available in sport coupe, convertible, and El Camino body styles – all of them equipped with a double dome hood and either a 350 hp 396 or a 375 hp 396 as well as sporting red line tires. Mean while the new luxury Concours has a choice of a sedan or a sport sedan model both with four doors. The Concours interior has special sound insulation, deeply padded dash, color keyed upholstery, and imitation wood grain accents. The Concours is also available as an Estate wagon as well – making four station wagons in the Chevelle line up. Starting this year the “Nomad” makes an appearance with three engine options; the largest is 327 cu in V8 with 325 hp (242 kW). All the standard transmissions came with a “smog pump” called an Air Injection Reactor or A.I.R. Other mandated equipment is side marker lights and a shoulder harness in front seats starting December 01, 1968
Americas most popular mid size car is the 1969 Chevelle was the way the marketing was done and that may be true. The 1969 had cosmetic body changes – the grill area has a chrome bar between the four head lights and the slotted bumper has the parking lights with the tail lights vertical, a bit bigger, and blend into the quarter panels. “Asto ventilation” supplying fresh air means no more no draft windows at least in most models. This year has a few less models as well with the SS396 as an option pack for two door models only and the base 300 series discontinued with fewer models and very few SS396 model option packs sold make the 1969 Malibu SS396 a very valuable car. The SS396 did have an additional higher horse power option available with the basic at 325 hp or you could kick it up to 375 hp (280 k). The SS396 option has a blacked out grill with an SS emblem and a black rear panel. There were three levels of station wagons offered while the luxury Concours are available in Nomad and Greenbrier editions. If your car was one with a tailgate it could now be opened traditional style or as a panel door. The new additions available for all Chevelles included round dash instruments, rear defogger, headlight washers, locking steering column, head rests, power windows, and power locks.
The 1970 Chevelles have a more squared up appearance complete with a revised interior with seven body styles offered this year. The base models are available as sport coupe or four door sedan and are now called “Chevelle” instead of “300 Deluxe “ and which causes some confusion. The only body styles that could get the SS package are the Malibu, Malibu Sport Coupe, and the Malibu convertible with either the SS 396 (402 cid) or the all new 454 cid engine. The basic 454 is rated at 360 hp or the LS 6 version rated at 450 hp. There are many smaller engines available starting with one six cylinder and many V8 engines offered; a 307 cu in V8, two 350 cu in, and a pair of 402 cu in. The 402 was marketed as a “396” with two horse power ratings for sale; the first is “RPO 396” at 330 hp with a single exhaust pipe and the RPO Z25 SS 402. Lastly we have two power options on the 454 cu in cid V8 engine; the first rated at 360 hp and then the LS6 at 450 hp. To be continued……..
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