Estate Find: “Batwing” 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air Convertible

Coming out of an estate sale is this beautiful black on black 1957 Bel Air convertible. It’s flanked by a stunning red and grey interior. Not a great deal of information is provided about the car other than it has just 62,653 miles on the odometer and the famous “Batwing” dual air cleaner set-up which was reserved for the 283 cubic inch V8 with twin carbs, good for 270 hp. Located on site in Bradenton, Florida, the car is featured here on Estate Sales. There is no indication of a selling price, auction parameters or a reserve, but this car will likely go for big bucks. The sale is being held on May 14 & 15, 2021. Thanks, Bruce J, for the tip on this one!

1957 was the final year of what would become known as the Tri Five Chevies (1955-57). Chevrolet built 4.5 million of the cars in total, with 1.55 million occurring for 1957. Of that number, 48,000 were the Bel Air convertible like the seller’s car. Perhaps the best looking of three model years, these cars are still highly sought after and can command some serious coin with the right features. This could be one of those cars with it being both a convertible and having what appears to be the souped up 283 with a Powerglide automatic.

We’re told this is an all-original car, but it would be amazing to find that everything on the car is as it left the factory in 1957. The black convertible top looks brand new, the body is straight, and the paint shines up perfectly, and the interior looks as though it’s hardly been sat it. There is a small collection of aftermarket gauges added under the dashboard, so the owner was serious about keeping track of how various functions of the car were performing. The Bel Air wears fender skirts which you don’t see that often on these cars.

Besides all that, the real appeal may be what’s under the hood. If this is in fact the 283 V8/270 hp engine, it would contain the legendary “Duntov” camshaft and solid lifters. Zora Arkus-Duntov was a Belgian-born American engineer that is best known for his work at Chevrolet that earned him the nickname “Father of the Corvette.” If this car were equipped with fuel injection, the output would rise to one horsepower per cube. Even without these considerations, this car might end up fetching six figures in today’s crazy market. How much would you be willing to part with to drive this beauty home?

 

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Comments

  1. Steve Clinton

    I always thought ‘batwing’ was describing the fins on the ’59 Chevy. Live and learn.

    Like 7
  2. danny coleman

    powerglide with a clutch pedal?

    Like 13
    • John S Dressler

      Sure looks like a 3 on the tree to me!

      Like 12
  3. 86_Vette_Convertible

    Ditto on the 3 pedals. Look incredible to me.

    Like 4
  4. MikeB

    If my elderly memory isn’t failing me I think the 270hp engine was only available with three on the tree. The 245 hp. engine (2-4’s, hyd. Cam) would be the strongest engine available w/ auto trans. in 57 Chev. lineup.

    Like 1
  5. flmikey

    I barn find in my town, and it’s 10 minutes away from my house…I’ve seen this car around…more stunning in person than the pix…

    Like 7
  6. Dom Colucci

    That’s a 3 on the tree and the bat wing is the two fours air cleaner …

    Nice car…

    Like 2
  7. Cadmanls Member

    Very nice looking car, sure to bring big money as optioned.

  8. Ivan

    Going to look at this car today!!!!

    Like 4
  9. Johnmloghry Johnmloghry Member

    So cool it makes me drool.
    God bless America

    Like 1
  10. Otto Leslie

    How much did it sell for?

  11. Mike Saucier

    My Dad owned a Turquoise Convertable. Hated it because the top frames rattled so sold it and got a Coupe. LOL, sure wish I had that rattler now.

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