Black Plate 1952 Chevrolet Business Coupe

Sometimes colors can reach right out and grab you. And that’s what happened with this 1952 Chevrolet Styleline Special Business Coupe. The second I caught the color I thought, “that looks like the ’50s.” And of course, being a business coupe further dates this old Chevy. Unusual cars like this always garner a second look so let’s see what’s here. This Chevy is located in Sacramento, California and is available, here on eBay for a current bid of $10,450, twenty-five bids tendered so far.

Chevrolet’s 1952 line-up was broad, and in most instances, incorporated the name “Styleline” into almost every model offered. The Styleline Special Business Coupe was an unadorned, bottom of the line model, and according to the Old Car Manual Project, accounted for a little over 10K units of the entire ’52 Chevy production volume of 826K cars.

Besides the obviously worn finish, the seller states, “Fairly solid body – some rust holes in the floor and passenger door, the trunk is solid“. “Fairly” could be a cause for concern. The most apparent body rot shows at the bottom of the passenger door and at the top, inside portion of the rocker panels. While the chrome (bumpers & grille) have a sort of sandblasted look about themselves, the trim looks to be complete and in place. Fender skirts were not standard on the Special trim level but they were commonly found on other Styleline models so they are keeping with the character of the era. If this Chevy looks like it’s slinking around, it is, it has been lowered three inches.

Under the hood is a 92 HP, 216 CI, in-line six, cylinder engine that has seen quite a bit of improvement, specifically, a new fuel pump; rebuilt factory carburetor; new chrome air cleaner; exhaust and intake manifolds removed, and blasted, and inspected; new exhaust gaskets; new valve cover gasket; new side cover gasket; rebuilt water pump;
rebuilt 6-volt generator; new 8-volt battery; radiator professionally boiled out and pressure tested and new hoses. The seller adds, “Overall this car runs, drives, stops, and steers“. A three-speed, manual transmission manages gear changes.

The interior is rough, the headliner looks like it got tornadoed-out and there is a Mexican-style blanket covering the front seat. The blanket treatment has become a bit of a styling cue as of late but it doesn’t negate the probable condition of the seat. The rear portion of the interior, behind the seat, is gutted and there is a platform of sorts in place. I’m not certain if that’s standard fare for a Business Coupe; perhaps a reader could comment on this matter. As noted by the seller, a “Butterfly” steering wheel has been installed which accessorizes the otherwise austere interior.

This Chevy is doing well in the bidding action, better than I would have thought. Being an uncommon Business Coupe body style makes this Chevy that much more of a draw. There are many ways one could go with his car, maintain the current trend, hot-rod, full resto-mod, or try an original style restoration. Which direction would you choose?

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Comments

  1. Jay Morgan

    There’s a Cuban guy organizing and youtubing car shows in Miami area. Generation old school I think, he drives a sweet 50 cheby.
    I like it.

    Like 5
  2. CCFisher

    A platform in place of the rear seat was typical of a business coupe. The idea was to provide quick access to sample cases, etc. A business sedan would have made for easier access to the rear compartment, but I suppose the idea with a coupe was to make it as cheap as possible.

    Like 4
  3. Arby

    Had a friend in High School with one like this but a little more beat up.
    He scrawled on the front fender its motto

    “Beats Walkin”.

    Like 6
  4. Jon

    A guy for whom I worked in Chicago said this was his first car … he said he couldn’t afford a back seat … considering he was president of the company and drove a Seville he did come up a bit …

    Like 3
  5. Robert White

    Right now on EBay there are 29 bids and it’s up to over $10k, but there 169 watchers too so more bids will be flowing in.

    This car is going to be costly & pricey once the bidding has ended.

    Nice looking car though.

    Bob

    Like 3
    • Steve R

      I think whoever buys this doesn’t do anything other than reupholster the front seat and make sure any mechanical or safety issues are addressed. Then buff the paint as much as possible, but not restore the cosmetics.

      Steve R

      Like 5
  6. Bill Hall

    THe chrome problem is very typical for the early fifties. There must have been a shortage or some other problem due to the Korean war?

    Like 5
    • Charles Turner

      Yep, the ’52 & ’53 models had the nickel plating stage of the 3 stage plating process omitted because of the Korean war effort. Hence the reason all the 1952/53 American made autos began to have bumpers & grilles that fairly quickly began to look bad. At least that’s how I understand it.

  7. Jimmy Novak

    There’s that “restomod” word again, an impossibility in terms. If it’s restored, it can’t simultaneously be modified.

    • Charles Sawka

      That’s exactly what it means. A combination. Restored body. Modified mechanicals. Makes sense if you want to drive em.

      Like 2
  8. Merrill Newman

    The accessory steering wheel is a nice bonus. I think I would prefer the basic wheel on the business coupe, as is. If the new owner chooses to go Fifties Custom, the fancy wheel would fit right in.

    Like 1
  9. Kenneth Carney

    Last time I saw one was 1978 when a
    fellow I knew had one. His was blue with a white top and as the gentleman
    from Chicago said, “It was more beat
    up than this one.” In fact, it had a bumper sticker slathered across the front of the hood just above the Chevy
    emblem proudly proclaiming his choice
    for county sheriff. Other than that, you could’ve fixed the body and had a really
    nice driver. And like this car, his was
    mechanically sound and as Dad always
    said, “You can’t drive the paint job.”

    Like 2
  10. Ward Edwards

    The wheel looks like a ’49 – ’50 Deluxe wheel. My grandpa had a ’51 “Sport Coupe” which was a business coupe with a back seat.

  11. HC

    Good sid looking car. Had a buddy who had a 52 Styline much like this one he was a six cylinder fanatic and had a 235 put back in his.

  12. Richard Coley

    My first car was a 48 Chevy Stylemaster business couple. The wood arrangement instead of a back seat is the standard arrangement for a business couple. A plywood vertical back piece and a plywood horizontal platform where seat cushions would be in a sedan. I didn’t even realize that Chevrolet was still making business coupes in 1952. I thought perhaps 1948 was the final year for coupes. Learned something “new” today.

    Like 1
  13. leiniedude leiniedude Member

    Ended:Nov 20, 2020 , 7:37PM
    Winning bid:
    US $10,450.00
    [ 25 bids ]

  14. canadainmarkseh Member

    nice car fair price. id restore it.

  15. PatrickM

    Sold. $10,450.00. Fairly nice car, but, not for that money. $7K tops for me.

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