13k Mile 1957 Chevrolet 150

1957 Chevrolet 150

It amazes me what unrestored Tri-Fives can go for these days. Chevy only built a few million of these cars over a 3 year period. A decent number of those cars have survived, but not many can claim to be untouched low mileage examples. This ’57 is a base model 150 with the inline 6 and a 3 speed, but it’s said to be original with just 13k miles. The seller doesn’t offer much evidence to back up that claim in their punctuation free ad, but it’s entirely possible that they are correct. Take a look at it here on eBay in Gering, Nebraska with a current bid of $17k and decide for yourself!

1957 Chevrolet 150 Engine

The seller claims that this Chevy has been parked since ’72. They got it running and other than a leak in the heater box, it is said to run well.

1957 Chevrolet 150 Interior

For a car with just 13k miles on it, this interior looks pretty well used. Some of the damage could just be the result of heat and rodents, but much of it looks like the kind of damage that comes from frequent use.

Low Mileage 1957 Chevrolet 150

So do you think this Chevy really only has 13k miles or is it more like 113k? I like the looks of this car, I love the color, but I worry about what kind of rust issues are hiding underneath. If the mileage really is this low and the rust isn’t bad, do you think it’s worth a premium or would you rather have a 210 or Bel Air with a few more miles for the same price?

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Comments

  1. Fred W.

    I’d like a better look at the service station sticker on the doorjamb, and the steering wheel.

  2. BillB

    Tough call on the mileage. There are many points that support the claim, such as pedal and shift lever wear and lack of stone dings in the radiator core but there are some that don’t, like the headliner and seats that you pointed out. I would need to see some maintenance paperwork. It’s over $17K with reserve not met, so there are several believers out there.

  3. Frankie

    Nope, not me, for that price you can buy a nicer Pontiac, these were/are pretty plain compared to Buick,Oldsmobile, Pontiac…..it’s cool, but as you can see the people bidding have clearly lost it

  4. Bill

    How about 113,000 miles? What’s wrong with that? It’s a 59-year-old car – that’s still less than 2,000 miles annually, on average.

    • Josh Staff

      There’s nothing wrong with 113k, it just isn’t 13k. That’s a big difference in wear and tear, of course 59 years of sitting can take just as much toll too. In this case, it’s really more about collectors putting considerable value on the mileage and whether a 13k mile car is worth more than a 113k one. I don’t know, but I’m curious to see what everyone else thinks!

  5. RayT Member

    I’m nowhere near the expert some others around here are, but I tend to think the mileage claim is likely honest. Some of those interior materials can deteriorate quite a bit without any outside influence other than time. Everything else looks shipshape for so old a car.

    Except, maybe for the price, which strikes me as awfully high for an ultra-plain ’57. If not for the five-figure entrance fee, this is a car I’d consider buying and driving just as it is, something I’d be reluctant to do with a full-boat, show-quality ’57.

  6. Roselandpete

    The front seat wear spot seems to be in an unusual place. Back seat looks great though.

  7. Randy W

    No way this car only has 13,000 miles. It wouldn’t have rust thru both front quarters, stain in headliner between mirror and sun visor, not to mention the engine compartment looks more like 200,000 miles on it. This car should look like showroom condition, Then you could get the price for it. Needs bodywork, and paint, with some serious clean up on motor compartment.

    • Tom Member

      Don’t want to disagree with you Randy because I am always the guy yelling “NO WAY mileage that low BUT I do want to point out that there is a big difference between OLD, low mileage and things not well cared for VS: signs of mileage higher than being stated.

      Bill pointed out the pedals, other the rear seat as not showing wear. door panels look good. front seat looks good and the damage could be sun rot from how it was parked, I have seen this before.(like where sun beats every day through a window only on the middle of the seat), think about it Where the driver would sit looks great. Leak on the headliner is easy as rubber seals shrink and dry out allowing water. Rust on the fender at 13K, in Nebraska, 59 years later is totally understandable. I am a rust expert and the fenders have an inner structure that allow dirt and moisture to collect causing it to rot of and don’t forget that LIGHTER COLOR CARS rust out faster than dark color cars because they never get very hot in the sun to warm up the metal, like on a black car, to dry it out. this car is 59 years old. even 13K miles slowly over time ON A CAR NOT WELL CARED FOR will look like this. well cared for it would be a museum piece. the engine bay is a little rough but as a professional detailer and restoration expert you can see, if you look deep into it, where it is just 59 years of never being cleaned. this car does NOT have the wear an tear on it of 113K, just an owner that was neglectful and didn’t really care.
      If it is 113K and I am wrong, this car is in darn good shape for 113K and 59 years!

  8. crazydave

    Unusual set of options on such a stripper. A radio and electric wipers (vacuum wipers were more common). Most 150’s had a radio delete plate. Can’t see if it has a dash clock, but I believe clocks weren’t even available as a option on the 150 line

  9. sunbeamdon

    Something doesn’t compute:

    1. Studded snow tires – not available until the early sixties

    2. Surface rust – who’s kidding whom? This area on both fenders is full on penetrating rust – no easy bondo fix! The tim worm strikes again!

    3. Wonder when GM changed to 12 volt batteries? If originally 6 volt – guages will be fried (ask me about a ’54 Lincoln – estate sale – 12 volt fiasco!). However, while not my proudest moment, I made 5 grand as a flipper!

    • Roselandpete

      I think GM switched in 55.

    • Vince Habel

      GM went to 12 volt in 55

  10. geezerglide85

    Back when I was in H.S. I worked in a local gas station 1974-1976. There was an elderly lady with a ’63 Biscayne, only had 17,000 miles on it and garage kept. The amount of rust was unbelievable, the interior was still like new, but short trips around town and sitting can really take its toll on a car. That Biscayne was just dicintagrading before our eyes. At the time that car was only 12 years old, this one is almost 60! Amazing to see much of anything original. If it was 113,000 miles there probably wouldn’t be much of anything left.

  11. Jim Masteller

    I have restored 6 57’s and this one is very odd…..Not mention over priced….To pay that much for a plain 57 that needs to restored is foolish….The fact that the trunk rear latch has been repainted silver and the striker is body color tells me there has been a repaint…And there is to much wear on interior….And it’s not age as some have said..It’s wear…130,000 yes…Neb uses no salt…this was a summer car for a farmer who used a truck during the winter…At most car is worth 10 grand…..

  12. Zack

    I’m gonna have to weigh in on this one…. I’m for believing that it is more likely 113k miles which is still low miles for any car that old, but, once looking over that engine bay….there are too many identifying marks to suggest considerably more than 13k miles. Even if one was to have a car today that was say…three or four years old and still only had 13k miles on it, one would have had it just sitting, accumulating dust. Even were it parked outside and the occasional storm came rolling in…. more dust…. maybe a little water…. but how does one get scratches and marks on items made of steel….even over 50 years + unless one is wrenching on things with tools or whatever….. and why would that be necessary if a car only had 13k miles….and if it had really such low miles, why then would one be so careless as to scratch things up on what would otherwise be an almost immaculate bay? Only a fool would do such a thing to what would be nearly a perfect car…..makes you wonder…. After 50, 60k all kinds of things happen under the hood. Things stop working. One mechanic after another cannot get it right. A little slip here and there with a tool…. after awhile it doesn’t really matter. It’s just an old car. After 50 years of playing with cars and the people who do the same….this just seems logical….whereas the claim of 13k original miles ….well…that seems more…. magical. As Always……………… Caveat emptor.

  13. sunbeamdon

    -Roselandpete – thanks, and Google confirms – 1955

  14. Barzini

    I’ve always preferred the 150 over the 210 and Belair because of its simple, elegant design. I have no idea whether the odometer is original mileage or flipped over once; there doesn’t appear to be conclusive evidence either way. If it was under $15k, I’d take a chance but not at this price.

  15. Andrew

    A friend of mine purchased a ’57 150 that had been a county government car. It originally had 6 with a 3 speed. It had been restored to a Black Widow right down to every detail. The only liberty take was a 327 rather than 283. Tha car was fast with the fuel injection.

    • Bingo

      Black widow for sure!!!

  16. geomechs geomechs Member

    I’m not going to debate over whether this car has 13K mikes on it, or 113K miles, or 213K. I’ve seen high milers meticulously serviced and maintained that look like they just came out of the showroom. And I’ve seen low milers suffer from extended abuse. I took my ’79 GMC off the road after it started having problems with drivability; the springs and shackles were shot, as well as the chain in the transfer case. Combined those would cause the truck to start hopping for no apparent reason. The 400 SBC was getting so low on compression that it was like spinning it over with the plugs out. But it looked fantastic, even at 400K miles. Full body-off restoration is under way, and hopefully it will run/drive as good as it looks again.

  17. Luke Fitzgerald

    Poppy’s very well preserved, but well used 113K – good car/find

  18. macvaugh

    The detective in me says way over 13K miles. In 13K miles you would not have peeled off door jamb stickers, nor the wear made beneath the ignition lock from the wear from a full ring of keys.

  19. jaymes

    a lot of money for a post car that needs a lot of work

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