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350 Equipped: 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air

For many of our Bow-Tie enthusiasts, this is a project car that ticks a lot of the right boxes. It is a 1957 Bel Air, it has two doors, and there’s a healthy 350ci V8 under the hood. As a project car, it doesn’t get much better than that. The owner has decided that it needs to go to someone who can finish what he has started, so he has listed it for sale here on eBay. It is located in Steens, Mississippi, and the bidding has reached $20,300. With the reserve now met, a new home is beckoning for this American icon.

The refurbishment work has commenced on the Matador Red and India Ivory Chevy. There is evidence that the front fenders have received a repaint at some point, but I believe that a full repaint is not far away for this beauty. The panels look to be straight, and there is no visible evidence of rust problems. The owner supplies photos of the floors and frame, and while there is surface corrosion present, there is no evidence of penetrating rust. The trim and chrome seem to be in good order, as is the glass. The Rally wheels that the Bel Air rolls on indicate that this might not be 100% original.

Lifting the hood immediately reveals that things are far from stock. The Bel Air is powered by a 350ci V8, which is backed by a TH350 automatic transmission. Further mechanical upgrades include power steering, along with power front disc brakes. This engine and transmission combination is a pretty common upgrade on Chevs of this era and the components are nothing if not bulletproof. It looks like the owner was keen on doing everything right the first time around because the engine bay has obviously been restored and repainted before that small block was slotted into place. He was also intent on creating a total package. Besides upgrading the brakes, the front end has been completely rebuilt, a new wiring harness has been installed, and a new aluminum radiator should help keep things cool. The engine wears a few cosmetic enhancements, along with a new set of exhaust headers. The Bel Air has only accumulated around 200 miles since all of this work was completed, so everything remains fresh.

The owner only supplies this single blurred photo of the interior, but it does tell us a couple of things. The first of these is that there is a hole in the dash where the radio should be. The dash itself looks unmolested, so a retro stereo or an original radio could be slotted in quite easily. There is also no carpet, but this is probably a positive for the buyer. It does at least afford them a clear view of the floors. The wheel has wear on the rim and will need to be restored or replaced if the interior is to present at its best. We can just see the edge of the front seat in this photo, and it looks like it has been fitted with a Black aftermarket cover. This seems to be in good condition, and you would have to hope that the rest of the trim is in a similar state. If it isn’t, then a retrim will be in order. If this is the case, you can’t help but think that it would look great with the upholstery finished in factory code 683, which is Red and Silver.

I can be pretty sure that we will have plenty of readers who will like the look of this 1957 Bel Air and would be keen to unlock the potential that it shows. That makes me wonder whether we have any that are so attracted that they might consider submitting a bid. If you do and you are successful, I’d love it if you could keep us updated on your progress with the project. I know that my colleagues here at Barn Finds would agree with me when I say that we see plenty of classics come across our desks. It would be nice to see the results of the hard labor that one of our readers puts into creating the car of their dreams from a vehicle that they spot on our site.


  1. Ken

    The car is 64 I’m 62 I got after market parts too

    Like 8
    • Steve Bush Member

      Ken, I’m also 62 and will be getting some partials soon to replace teeth that had to be extracted. Hope all your parts are working properly. Stay safe and healthy.

      Like 1
  2. Classic Steel

    I luv it. A big tri-5 fan. This being a no post and its color is super cool 👍

    I am thinking the Dirty Dancing Swayze 57 hardtop too.

    I had a no post 55 4 speed 327 340 hp in HS.

    Like 1
  3. JerryDeeWrench

    So what if it works use it. I wish I could bid on it. It would be mine. Lol on

    Like 2
  4. Arby

    Original interior would be red and black – red and silver was for the convertible.

    Like 4
  5. bobhess bobhess Member

    We restored a ’57 Bel Air four door post sedan for a customer and the interior was black, white and silver. Outside was white over Dusk Pearl Metallic. Guess it depends on what you ordered, which you could do in those days. I like this car just like it is.

    Like 4
  6. Joe Haska

    I like cars in this condition and price point, they give you the best of all your options. You get to enjoy the car and you can gradually make improvements that you want and afford. It is like dating enjoy the experience and at the same time establish a relationship,or not.

    Like 2
  7. Fritz Bodenheimer

    Van nuys,Ca. Built Car?
    One piece front bumper.

    Like 0
    • Rixx56 Member

      Not one piece… I see 3

      Like 0
      • Fritz Bodenheimer

        You are correct. Looked one piece so I didn’t enlarge the pic. MEA Culpa

        Like 0
  8. Tort Member

    Refreshing to see a tri five with its exterior and interior looking as it came of the line but updated under the hood. I am guilty many times of the latter.

    Like 0
  9. Johnmloghry Johnmloghry

    I like this car. I owned a 57 Bel Aire 2drht back in 67-68. It was 283 a/t. A coworker had one but his was bored .060 over to 301 c.I. With a 4 speed. While mine was white with red interior his was metallic green with green interior. Now I never really got the swap to 350. It just seems to me if you’re going to swap engines why not go with the biggest most powerful one you can get.
    God bless America

    Like 0
  10. Stan Marks

    Something tells me those front fenders are not original.
    Unless the painter was colorblind, why wouldn’t he match it with Matador red? You just don’t paint the front fenders & leave the rest of the body alone.
    An Earl Scheib paint job would look better than this.

    Like 1
  11. Art Hoffman

    I’ve often wondered why we don’t see pictures of thecars befoe & sfter restoration. That would be nice

    Like 0

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