When you consider Chevys from the 1970s, you probably wouldn’t be surprised to see a mint Corvette from that era. Anything else, however, might prove questionable. Today’s Nice Price or No Dice Nova asks that question, and we’ll need to come up with a very good answer as to whether it’s worth its asking.
The big difference between wines and cars is that no one expects any of the latter to get better with age. The wine matures, the cars just wear out. That wearing out can happen through use, or, surprisingly, through disuse.
Yesterday’s 1990 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL was presented in its ad as both used and disused, and as a result of these actions, it no longer would run reliably. None of the car’s issues seemed intractable, but taken as a whole they proved damning to the seller’s chances of making the $5,000 that was asked for the car. That was evident in the 60 percent No Dice loss you all awarded it.
Back in the 1970s, television and film entertainment was rife with fish out of water stories about people being transported to the future by jumping over the years in suspended animation or some other quasi-technical manner. Most of the stories were pretty goofy and would inevitably end with the ’70s throwback character saving future-land from some manufactured disaster by using good old-fashioned common sense, which the future people strangely lack.
Quite remarkably, today’s 1976 Chevrolet Nova Concours follows the plot of those old sci-fi shows to a T. Hailing from the year of the U.S. Bicentennial, this landau-roofed beauty literally looks like it just rolled off the assembly line. In fact, the odometer indicates that it has only done a mere 17,132 miles since actually leaving the factory. That gauge sits below a wonderful horizontal dial speedometer that hysterically has yellow and red warning bars starting at the 55 miles per hour mark.
The gauge cluster sits in a faux wood panel which in turn is mounted in a red vinyl dashboard. In fact, pretty much everything in the cabin is red and vinyl, right down to the bench seats, front and rear. The only discordant element here is a set of black floor mats, but that addition can be discounted as it’s probably pretty hard to find mats that match the cabin’s color scheme.
There’s more red outside, and not just on the brake lamp lenses. The half-landau roof is colored in that hue and is deeply padded. Along with the Concours trim descriptor on the front fender, the padded roof gets a Cabriolet badge in elegant script behind the side glass. The red of the top is matched in the thick side molding that runs the length of each flank.
Both the under-hood and trunk spaces look completely clean and thoroughly unused. Power here is provided by a carbureted 350 cubic-inch V8 which sends its 165 horsepower output through a three-speed automatic transmission and on to a limited-slip differential in the back. The car is fitted with air conditioning, power steering, and power disc/drum brakes. Rallye wheels with chrome trim rings offer a bit of eye candy and wear new BF Goodrich Radial T/A tires. The title is clean and the seller claims the car “RUNS GREAT.”
This Nova is a bit of a jaw-dropper, not only because of its amazing condition but because it’s a ’70s Nova that has been kept in such amazing, all original shape. I mean, who does that? According to the car show sign that is referenced in the ad, it once belonged to a GM dealership, so perhaps it was kept as some sort of display car. My local Volkswagen dealer has a Type 2 Doka that is used in that fashion.
Regardless of how it came to be, it’s here now and the seller is asking $18,500 to take on its stewardship and, hopefully, not put too many more miles on it. Does that price seem like a fair deal for someone looking for the perfect Nova? Or, is asking that much just as crazy as keeping a pristine example of a mundane car all these years?
H/T to Don R. for the hookup!
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