Affordable Style: 1948 Chevrolet Stylemaster

Having lived with its current owner since 1965, this Stylemaster is a runner, but is in need of restoration according to the seller. Being sold by the owner’s son-in-law, it would seem the owner is trying to pass along the project he thought he would make time for, but sadly never did. In running condition with a few spares, this 2 door Chevy is offered for $2,900. Check it out here on craigslist out of Wichita, Kansas.

Described as “all original” except for the engine, it would seem that this Chevy was a bit of a hot rod in its day. The engine is described as a ’49 model with rod and main inserts rather than Babbitt metal bearings. Despite the engines lack of originality, it is quite nice that it is a runner, but these old 216 Chevrolet inline 6’s are awesome engines that always seem to run no matter what. The engine compartment is quite dusty, and the engine while nicely covered in orange paint is also quite dusty as well.  A power washer would do wonders in this engine bay, that is for sure.

The interior is well hidden but there are a few clues that give a hint as to this Chevrolet’s interior. The passenger door panel has been repeatedly wet, and shows with its torn and saggy appearance. The dash has minor surface rust and the steering wheel is broken around the horn button area, but the seller is including another wheel with the car. Also the speedometer is cloudy, and looks to have some sort of adhesive on it. Also a spare speedo is included as well.

Heavily weathered but with some remnants of old paint remaining, this Chevy looks relatively straight with little rot to be found. The most apparent rot is below the taillights, but there is surface rust everywhere. The lower portions of the front fenders appear crispy, but the lower body trim is concealing any visible rot from the photos. The driver side windshield and window are cracked, needing to be replaced. The license plate lends an idea of how this car was stored since 1983, and it would seem that it spent a fair amount of tome outside as the license plate is completely bare with no paint. There is a cool visor installed on this Chevy and there also appears to be some fender skirts included with the car. A great project to improve upon and in running shape, would you take on this affordable post war Chevy?


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  1. Ben T. Spanner

    My Grandfather had the same car; same color. It was purchased used around 1952, and replaced a 1936 Dodge rumble seat coupe.
    He must not have liked the 1949 as he bought a new 1956 Chevy 210 2 door sedan with a six, powerglide, 2 tone paint, am non pushbutton radio, and full wheel covers.
    He had to notch the studs on the garage wall so that the 1956 would fit, and he could close the doors. Lots of old garages had that modification as cars grew. some times there would be a little shed like extension, often only 4 feet or so tall.

    Like 1
    • Al

      I understand.
      I use to live in a rental property house and its garage had been built to hold just a Model T coupe. Nothing else would fit in that garage properly after that.


    Personally, I prefer the aero sedan, although this model is rarer.

  3. Cameron

    Looks like it would make for a good project for the guys over at icon

  4. Mark

    Did you see that rare black amc matador ended at 55,000 dollars. Not sold, sorry I know this is not thread for that car. Can not believe that guy wants even more for it.

  5. Pa Tina


  6. Lance L Walker

    I believe it’s a 235 if it’s a non babbit bearing engine. The 216’s were babbit

    • Roger

      A ’49 vintage engine would’ve originally been a babbit bearing engine as insert bearings didn’t come from the factory in engines until sometime in mid year ’53 or ’54,that being said I think that some of the older engines were converted to use inserts,remember seeing in the J.C. Whitney catalogs years ago in bearing sets for older Chevy sixes it had the footnote (if converted to insert bearings)the 216’s were the standard engine until 1953 when replaced by the 235,if someone wanted a little more power in an older Chevy a cheap upgrade was an engine from a Powerglide equipped car as they had bigger intake valves than standard equipped cars,my dad had several Chevy coupes like this with the last being a ’48 so have always had a soft spot for the post war Chevrolets.

      • Marty Parker

        When Chevrolet introduced the Powerglide transmission in 1950, the 235 was used with it from that point on.

      • Rob

        Roger, 1948 was actually the very 1st year for the 216 to have insert type main bearings. The camshaft bearings had already been switched to insert type a few yrs earlier. Only the connecting rod bearings remained babbitt type until 1954. I restored a ’48 Fleetmaster & all the original factory literature of that year mentions this fact.

  7. Jack Quantrill

    This toad should be left in the barn! One ugly car. $2900, madness!

  8. David Miraglia

    make it 1,000 and all the work that she needs

  9. Tiki Vegas

    OMG, has a pipe rest on the dash! Perfect.

    • Loco Mikado

      My dad was a pipe smoker and he always had 2 or 3 pipe holders lined up on the dash. I also remember those garage extensions and even a couple of them where the garage was cut it down the middle and moved the sidewalls out to widen them.

  10. duaney Member

    Needs everything, but it’s a coupe and the price is cheap!

  11. edward jamison

    Neat….just picked up a 48 myself…. does yours have the original “vacuum assist ” on the transmission ?? Would you considered selling the fender skirts separately ?…and maybe the visor ??

    • Clem Jamison

      CAN you please respond… sure would like to see those fender skirts on my 48

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