Another Stunning Chevelle SS 454 Survivor

1970 Chevelle SS

When this Chevelle was built, it was extremely well optioned. It came with the SS 454 package, performance suspension, power steering, tilt steering wheel, Positraction rear end, the ZL2 cowl induction hood and the vinyl top! The seller claims it’s all original, but admits the engine sounds like it has a different cam. Strangely, they built a 454 for it that they stamped the numbers onto. If the car is all original and runs, why would you build an engine for it and then stamp the numbers on it? It seems a bit fishy to me, but it currently has an engine in it that is hopefully the original. You can take a closer look at this beast here on eBay in Lake Worth, Florida with a current bid of $20k.

1970 Chevelle SS 454 Engine

The fact that the seller doesn’t seem to have any issue with stamping new numbers on the block to make it a “numbers” matching engine makes me a bit nervous. I guess at least they are being honest about it, which makes me feel a bit better. They are including the spare engine, which is fully rebuilt with correct SS 454 parts.

1970 Chevelle SS 454

This car looks to be in amazing shape, but I can’t help but wonder if it hasn’t been restored at some point in its life. I hope it’s all original, but I’d recommend taking a closer look at it in person just to be sure that glossy paint is original. So how do you feel about the seller creating their own numbers matching engine?

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Comments

  1. 68 custom

    comes with two engines and maybe the original is still in it? if it was rebuilt and decked those numbers would be gone, but I think they also stamp them by the oil filter? nice looking car I am guessing 50k or so with extra engine. love the color combo. it is a LS -5/454 so the money should not get super crazy.

  2. Luke Fitzgerald

    Sounds like a pretty conscious vendor – where the hell are these guys when I’m buyin’?

  3. Doug Towsley

    I linked to this auction in a posting about the last Chevelle big block featured a few days ago. This looks in better condition than the other one but havent looked too close, But depending on what the reserve is might be a better deal than restoring the other car.
    Restoration and rebuilding is not for everyone so buying a turn key car might be a better choice.
    I also did not look that close into the numbers thing on this one but it IS true that if a stock block has been machined you can lose the numbers. However so many people have the stamps and restamp anyway ANY numbers should be viewed as suspect. There ARE ways to verify but you REALLY have to know what you are doing. Just Assume any numbers claims are suspect. Perhaps this seller is one of the really honest ones? But Florida is ALSO the king of shady car deals, No disrespect to anyone in particular but I have a lot of friends who live there and they are the first to say that for whatever reason, Florida is full of shady characters. Also be very careful about paperwork as it must be squeaky clean as I have seen custom cars not be able to be titled elsewhere with Florida paperwork. Not saying THIS car has this issue I am just saying use due diligence on any deal.
    My Dad was an attorney and he used to love saying “If people would talk to an attorney BEFORE they did something they would save a lot of money over having to hire an attorney later” Vintage vehicles are the same deal. If you are not really experienced and knowledgeable do your research and consider finding help either professionally or thru a club or organization. I have been a consultant in the past for people and saved some people a lot of grief.

  4. PaulG

    Nice car, but I’m calling BS on the “Unmolested and unrestored” claim.
    You can see overspray under hood and on the hood hinges, plus the paint looks way too nice for being 46 years old. The rest of the story about the additional engine and numbers; well I shall-not-comment…
    The thing is, it’ll sell and for big $$. That is all the seller is looking for…

  5. Tom in Florida

    Well in response to Doug above I agree but Doug please keep in mind the 80% of the people in Florida seem to be from another state so please do not judge.

    I agree with you on hiring someone to look this car over, to many “signs” to me, no photo showing lower quarters, the picture showing the front seat with a pillar in my eyes purposely placed to make it seem like it could be a bucket seat car (Not fooling everyone but could fool some) then the video he made #1 it is 27 seconds long? Why? Then it is only (again) from above showing no lower areas on the vehicle.

    Too many signs saying run to me on this one.

    Tom in Florida

  6. Blindmarc

    As Doug T. Said Florida is full of shady dealers. Bidders beware without a full eyes on inspection.

  7. geomechs geomechs Member

    This is a nice car, without a doubt. But I have to admit that the ‘Numbers matching’ thing is getting rather worn out. I hope I’m wrong with this car because the vendor seems to be forthright about everything, but I remember watching the BJ auction when a ‘Numbers Matching’ ’69 Chevelle SS 396 came through. I could see that the transmission was a THM 350 and not a 400, which was supposed to be behind a big block. One of the announcers came on the TV at that moment (he saw it too) and said that there are more ‘Original Numbers-Matching’ 1969 Chevelle Super Sports out there now than were ever built. That makes sense because really, how many ’69 Chevelle 300 2-doors do you see out there? Even Malibu’s with stock 307 or 350 engines? Then how many Super Sports do you see?

    • moosie Craig

      I’m pretty sure that SS Chevelle’s have a specific SS only vin. # as opposed to a regular Chevelle/Malibu. Problem is that until 1972 the vin # didnt tell what engine the car was built with.

      • moosie Craig

        136 versus 138 vin # only applies to ’69 & earlier.

  8. Joe

    Don’t like this statement from the seller:

    “I built a number matching 454 that comes with the car. It’s on an engine stand. It is 100% correct. Correct Cam lifters and springs from Crane Cams, Correct date code and model heads; Correct exhaust manifolds. Castings and date codes are correct. I decked the block and stamped the block with Vin number. ”

    “Numbers matching” to me is not something that you make. Is this a clone of a numbers matching car? Is he giving the next owner the elements for a counterfeit that may not get noticed by the buyer after the next buyer?

    JC

  9. RoughDiamond

    I’d say he got swindled by someone and is trying to recover what he can by putting a plan B in place such as the “extra” engine, etc. to make the car more appealing.

  10. stillrunners stillrunners Member

    With Paul G……the under hood is the dead give away…..it’s a repainted car at the least….

  11. zaphod

    Numbers matching is a myth. I’ve created many “numbers matching” Jaguar engines because the original motors had head or block problems and the insurance companies needed to know the car hadn’t been modified. If the car was delivered with a 454 who cares if the one in it isn’t the one it was delivered with? I build racing engines that are designed and destined to blow up as they cross the finish line.

  12. Dolphin Member

    Looks like a nice car to drive and enjoy, but I’m going to agree with PaulG and some other commenters that this isn’t the unmolested and unrestored survivor that the seller says it is. There are too many parts that don’t say 50,000 miles of driving to me. Some underhood parts look new or refurbished, and that wheelwell paint and the bright trim on the right rear sure look new and not like 50K miles of driving. I expect it’s the same on the other 3 corners.

    Why do sellers try to pitch specialty cars like this as unmolested and unrestored survivors when they don’t look like they are? Maybe they might get a looker or 2 who would miss the obvious things that aren’t 50K-mile pieces on this car, but most knowledgeable buyers wouldn’t make that mistake and pay an unmolested / unrestored survivor price for the car. The description isn’t bad compared to many, but the “unmolested and unrestored survivor” just makes me doubt the rest of what the seller says, which might actually be true.

    As one of the best automotive writers I know says, “when you go to look at a possible car purchase you are evaluating the seller as much as the car”.

  13. Doug Towsley

    I would agree with Dolphin and the others, for the right price this could be a fun car for someone but for an investment vehicle DUE DILIGENCE and FPI is mandatory.

    There is a number of shops nationwide for cars and motorcycles who are flipping classics and some are great bringing back stuff from the dead and another cool classic saved, But its also a lucrative market and along with it is the temptation to build phonies. We all know this. In classic Triumph motorcycles I specialize in certain rare models. TT and C and SC and some others. My 1966 T120C is one of 211 made, Of the TTs roughly 2000 made per year with most destroyed in racing. (Factory production racers) but the joke is today that there is roughly 5000 TTs for each year made and the number is growing. I evaluate collectible vehicles all the time and in my area of knowledge I can spot MOST fakes. But there ARE people with the skills that can pass off fakes and you would never know. There is at least 24 items on a Chevelle like this to verify its authenticity. Experts know what to look for and how to do it. But there are also experts who know HOW to forge something as well.

    My wife has a 69 Chevelle and I have researched extensively every Chevelle topic imaginable for over 8 years. I have a pretty good grip on the topic but there are people far more invested and knowledgeable than I. We have also attended many of the Regional and National Chevelle meets. While we know many people who strive to be the best in Concours level competition (Jags, Rolls, Austins, Triumph, MG and Classic American) We dont care to go that far. Her car is not all original and we dont care. We just want a cool tastefully updated hotrod like what we grew up with back in the day.
    I know people who go totally OCD for 100 point show cars and to us,, Life is WAY too short for that. But I know guys if they wanted to build a fake super collectable car or bike their skills are good enough very few people could ever tell.

  14. Doug Towsley

    When I was active as a shop, whether a classic car or a motorcycle I still tell people today the same thing I always did when starting a project.
    #1) Do your research. Talk to clubs and as many resources as you can. Start a file folder and organize it with every possible topic from Parts sources to vendors to making a checklist.
    #2) Buy the FACTORY Workshop manual AND Parts book. Sometimes called the IPB or Illustrated parts breakdown Shows every part, part number and how they all fit together.
    For a Chevelle you need the Chevrolet Chassis Service manual, And the Fisher Body service manual AND the Factory Assembly manual. The Chiltons and Haynes manuals are nearly useless but not bad to have either
    #3) Find or look for specialty guides. There are a number of Books that pertain to Chevelles such as the Chevelle Performance guide (64-72) as well as the Chevelle SS Restoration guide by Herd. Dont over look the GM factory Chevy power manuals. (Great detailed material by the engineers and race teams themselves)
    #4) Theres some great web resources for Chevelles, every tech topic you can imagine. I cut and pasted and created files I downloaded to a thumb drive then took to a print shop and made up several volumes of tech topics, How tos and other material as I know I cant memorize everything. I dont have time to learn it all myself so I would rather learn from others what works and what doesnt. Especially part numbers and ideas I never would have thought of myself.
    I have a shelf in my office filled with resource materials for every type of project I have. This is a picture of the Chevelle projects tech materials we have. Theres shelves full for other vehicles (We actually have a 68 & 69)

    Here is a webpage on one of those web forums that should answer MOST questions for a potential SS or Chevelle owner.
    See: http://www.chevelles.com/shop/ss_ident.html
    (How to spot a genuine SS Chevelle / El Camino by Daniel Carr)

  15. Mike

    I have always tried to stay as Original as I can when restoring a car, yes I have sold a few “Matching Numbers” car, but I feel once you tear into a motor and rebuild it, it is no longer matching, especially when you have to replace worn out parts in the engine, and that includes any of the outer parts. I bought a 69 Nova from a old boy who said it was a matching number car. A few years down the line I found out that it was not the original tranny and motor, I called him up and chewed on him for a bit felt better, but he said that I should have looked better at the car. That was the last time I did that. Today when I buy a car, I will ask to take it to a shop and put it on a lift or ask them to bring it to my shop so I can crawl around and look. If I am going to look at a car that is in pieces I want to crawl around the pieces. There are to many dishonest people everywhere anymore not just Florida.

  16. wuzjeepnowsaab

    Restored or not, weirdness about info from the seller or not…this is a cool car and I think if the reserve isn’t crazy it should be a good price at around $35k . But what do I know…other than I’d drive the tires off of it again and again.

  17. Mark P

    Got $25000-$40000 to spend on a car? Get something tired, worn out, non numbers matching that you’ll love to drive and care for.

    Put a bunch of money into it to make it as new as you’d like it to be then just enjoy it without worrying about what other people think of it or what its return will be.

    Nothing worse than all these people that have to have sterile pristine vehicles with a huge return on investment that you can’t drive.

    Drive it like you stole it, no worries and fix it when it breaks.

  18. W.C. "Bill" Barkdull

    I am an avid GM fan all the way and would love to have another 1970 S/S 396 with step up hood OEM only because I could not afford the 454 CI – 450 HP S/S, best muscle car ever built in my opinion. But in all my years never ever saw this gold color with the white stripes and white vinyl top, and think it is the ugliest color for any car I’ve ever saw, and most especially on this 1970 S/S. . . . . This alone would be a big deal breaker for me!!! If I have seen uglier I can’t remember when or where!

    • moosie Craig M. Bryda

      I remember thinking that the Gold & White color combination was different but not necessarily ugly, the first one I saw sitting on the showroom floor actually looked knice. I suppose it all a matter of personal taste.

    • sluggo

      Color is very subjective, and some trends come and go. Early 1970s was a REALLY weird time period for many things, styles, colors etc.
      Many car companys picked colors that just baffle the mind today.
      Teal green was huge mid to late 1990s and many had adhesion problems with some of the OEMs.. GM and Ford had a lot of issues. I had a friend who runs a body shop and he flat out refuses to this day ANY Green paint jobs. For years he had a line of Green cars down the block as he had a contract with some of the OEMs and car dealers.
      SOME people dwell in a certain time frame of their past, their hairstyles stay the same, same music, etc etc,, so certain things from the past resonate with them. Wait long enough its back in fashion again

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