1960 Chevrolet Bel Air SedanS


Venturing to Alameda's gritty West End, I found this '60 Chevy sedan parked around the corner from the '73 Stringray we saw a couple weeks back. It's a bit banged-up, but it's rust-free and clearly drives regularly.

1960 Chevrolet Bel Air SedanS


My grandfather had a '60 Bel Air when I was a little kid, though his had suffered from a decade of Minnesota winters and therefore was more rust than steel. This car has been rolling for close to 50 years and it still looks good.

1960 Chevrolet Bel Air SedanS


Those big horizontal fins didn't help matters much in rust-prone regions; when combined with GM cars' tendency to leak around the rear window, the result was a car that rusted even faster than most Detroit machines of the era.

1960 Chevrolet Bel Air SedanS


Chevrolet's designers dug the jet-plane hood ornaments of their previous cars so much that they put big chrome jets on the sides of the '60. These things look great!

1960 Chevrolet Bel Air SedanS


They almost had the grille design that made the '63 and '64 big Chevy cars look so good, though this car certainly looks good from the front view.

1960 Chevrolet Bel Air SedanS


The base engine for 1960 was a 135-horsepower six, though most buyers opted for the 185-horse 283. Those with better sense (and fatter wallets) opted for the triple-carbed 348, which grunted out 335 horses; naturally, you'd want the 4-speed with the 348. Better still, you'd wait a year and order a crate 409 to be swapped in place of its smaller sibling.

1960 Chevrolet Bel Air SedanS


Some folks dislike the funky winglike fins of the '60, but they've really grown on me over the years. Urban legend has it that these cars will become airborne at high speed.

1960 Chevrolet Bel Air SedanS


A nice rumbly small-block (which is very likely what's already under the hood), some fatter tires, and a little bodywork and this car would be pretty much done.

1960 Chevrolet Bel Air SedanS

Would GM do a retro-ized version of this car? Or would they go with the more iconic shoebox of a few years earlier?