1-of-200: 1986 Chevrolet Monte Carlo SS Aerocoupe

Racing is said to improve the breed, and we’ve seen many examples of this in motorsport history. While aerodynamic efficiency is vital in any form of racing, nowhere is this better demonstrated than in NASCAR. Cars like Plymouth’s Superbird were perfect examples of this philosophy but were outlawed as being too fast. As the 1970s ended, the motoring world became focused on ways of clawing back the ground that had been lost through tightening emission laws. The time was ripe for these companies to delve once more into the dark art of aerodynamics, and several unique models appeared on the American market. One of these was the Chevrolet Monte Carlo SS Aerocoupe. Initially produced in limited numbers during 1986 to comply with NASCAR homologation requirements, its production lasted for a mere two glorious years. This particular car is a 1986 model, and it is searching for a new home. Located in Millbrook, New York, you will find the Monte Carlo listed for sale here on eBay. The BIN has been set at $23,500, but there is the option to make an offer.

From the front, there is nothing particularly radical about the shape or styling of the Aerocoupe. It’s when you wander around to the back of the car that the penny drops. Vehicle styling during the 1980s had become squarer, and the sharp drop-off between the roof and rear decks of most vehicles meant that airflow to areas like the rear deck and rear spoiler were disturbed and inefficient. That isn’t conducive to producing optimum levels of downforce and greater top speeds. Building the Monte Carlo in a hatchback or fastback form would have been the ultimate answer to allow the air from the roof to flow smoothly, but the cost of this would have been horrendously high. Therefore, Chevrolet modified the rear window and decklid of the existing Monte Carlo to produce a quasi-fastback design. The company made a mere 200 examples of the Aerocoupe, which was sufficient to qualify the model for NASCAR competition. This particular car is #198 of that production run, and it presents beautifully. It has received a repaint in its original White, complete with all the correct decals and stripes. This was the only color available during 1986, although buyer choices did increase for the following year. The panels are straight, and there is no evidence of any rust or prior accident damage. The original alloy wheels are in good condition, and there are no issues with the distinctive tinted glass.

If you ordered an Aerocoupe in 1986, the drivetrain was fixed. What you got was a 305ci V8, backed by a TH200-4R 4-speed automatic transmission. The F41 suspension package was also part of the deal, bringing heavier springs and shock, along with a rear sway bar and an increase in diameter to the front bar. While the standard 305 was capable of producing 150hp, the regular SS and the Aerocoupe was blessed with 180hp. This combination was enough to allow the Monte Carlo to cover the ¼ mile in 16.5 seconds. The owner states that the Aerocoupe is a numbers-matching vehicle and has 90,000 miles on the clock. It runs and drives perfectly, and the original Build Sheet and Window Sticker are included in the sale.

Buying an Aerocoupe in 1986 meant that you could have the interior trimmed in any color you liked…as long as it was Burgundy. Color choices increased for the 1987 model, but in 1986, this was it. The Monte Carlo’s interior has its known weak points, but this interior has avoided the cracked dash pad, the warped console lid, and the faded and crumbling plastic and cloth that can plague these classics. The only issue that I can spot is something strange going on with the leather on the wheel. It almost looks like a form of mold or mildew, so I would probably attend to that. Otherwise, the interior presents exceptionally well for an original survivor. Comfort and convenience features include air conditioning, power windows, remote mirrors, cruise, and an AM/FM radio and cassette player.

For the 1986 model year, Chevrolet produced 41,164 examples of the Monte Carlo SS. Of these, a mere 200 were the Aerocoupe version. That makes this a very rare car, and it is one that is in impressive condition. The limited build total also means that finding a decent one on the market today is becoming increasingly difficult. The BIN price on this one looks to be at about the right level, although it’s worth noting that values have remained pretty stagnant over the last few years. Will they stay that way, or will they go up or down? It’s a good question, and it is one that I can’t answer with a massive amount of confidence. We’ve seen buyers in the past roll the dice on rare cars hoping that they will appreciate as time passes. Some of these gambles have paid off, while others have gone spectacularly wrong. All of life is a gamble, so maybe this is a classic that is worth a closer look.

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Comments

  1. Moparman Member

    Looks to be well kept, and a great find for someone desiring one! GLWTA!! :-)

    Like 2
  2. Boatman Member

    Well done, Adam.

    Like 1
  3. Ike Onick

    Somebody found the keys to the Monte Carlo warehouse.

    Like 1
  4. CCFisher

    A production run of 200 units would make this exceptionally valuable, if not for the 6000+ nearly identical versions built the next year. 1965 Chevelle Z16s are valuable mostly because the 201 built are very different from the 70,000+ SS396s built in 1966.

    Like 5
    • Jay

      I have to disagree a bit. As you may recall Ford introduced a very slippery t-bird in ‘85 and awesome Bill was making everyone look bad. Chevy needed to homolgate something quickly. The 200 ‘86 aerocoupes actually had plastic backlites which was able to be tooled much quicker than the hot line bent glass that followed. I think that difference makes the ‘86 cars quite a bit more collectible. Btw: I was the program manager for the aerocoupe.

      Like 9
      • Craig

        The ’86 Aerocoupes do not have plastic back windows, for crying out loud! LOL

  5. jerry z

    I’d rather have the ’87 Aerocoupe. It has the 115 speedo, more color combos, and the back end looks better. Yes the ’86 is rare but only came in white. My favorite combo is silver/gray int.

  6. John

    Always liked these

    BTW, Did GM make any other cars in the mid/late 70s early 80s with a multi-piece rear window like these? My Pap had a car when I was little that had such a window, but I don’t think he was quite cool enough to have one of these. Also, he was a sedan kind of guy. Thanks.

    Like 2
    • Jay

      Actually it was a single piece hotline bent backlite. The 1977 Olds Toronado XS also had one, as did the Plymouth/Mitsubishi Sapporo.

      Like 1
  7. Jeff

    The 75/76 chevelle Laguna was outlawed as too fast on the nascar track…

  8. Mike

    1977-79 Chevy Caprice/impala 2 doors have a similar rear window.

    Like 1
  9. K. R. V. Member

    One of my best friends has one of these. He has been a Monte fan since I sold him a 70 Monte Carlo I bought off the original owner, in 81, that had only 86,000 miles, with every option except console, with complete gauges including tach. A 350/4 brl dual exhaust 300 hp TH 350, with 3:42 posi, as the original owner, who was like an older brother to me ordered it! The last Monte he’s owned is just like the above, that he bought used in 1990, with only 60,000 miles. But he could not stand the wheezing 305! So we removed the engine an trans., then installed a new GM Crate 355/4brl Holley Projection Injection hrdw, over an Edlebrock manifold, plus Hooker headers. Along with a 4 speed automatic that we took out of a C1500 Chevy truck in a bone yard. He still has the car an drives it every week the weather. The last time I was with him, in the car was at The Super Chevy Show at N. H. Motor Speedway, where he managed a 13.3 in the 1/4! All while getting 20 mpg average on the drive up an back, at 65-70!

    Like 1

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