Drag Car: 12,000 Mile 1966 Chevrolet Chevelle

When I hear the term “drag car,” I don’t think of a nice low-mileage vehicle like this 1966 Chevelle. This car has seen primary use as a drag car, and has been in the same family since new. It has only covered 12,224 miles! The seller’s parents purchased it new and raced it until the 1970s when the 427 threw a rod. It sat in the garage until 1985 when the seller removed it to use as his own drag car. After purchasing a less valuable vehicle to modify for a drag car, the seller parked this Chevelle in 1988 and it has been sitting ever since. Though the auction ended as I wrote this, bidding stopped at $28,800 with reserve not met. Find it here on eBay in Pennsylvania. Thanks to Becky M. for sending this one our way! 

Because this car has only seen just over 12,000 miles since new, the interior is in very good condition. The driver’s seat is showing some wear, but that is because this car rolled on miles a quarter mile at a time! Though largely in nice survivor condition, the seller notes that a mouse had chewed a hole in the headliner while the car was in storage but that there are no other signs (or smells!) of mice. With so much of the interior in nice condition, this car could easily be cleaned up into a mostly original survivor with a super cool backstory.

If you haven’t already figured it out, this picture will tell you and so will I: this car does not have an engine in it. The seller’s father pulled the original 396 out in 1968 to install a 427 when this became a dedicated drag car. When the seller got the Chevelle, he also opted for a 427 (remember, the previous 427 was damaged) but pulled that engine out when the car was parked in 1988. Fortunately, the seller has retained the original engine and transmission that this car left the factory with and it can be reinstalled by the next owner to retain originality.

Though it has seen a life on the drag strip, this Chevelle has been maintained and kept looking its best. When it was new, the seller’s mother backed the car in between two fence posts damaging the paint on both rear quarters, and so they have been partially repainted. The seller discovered surface rust in the trunk and had it cleaned and resealed by a restoration shop. The SS396 emblem was added by the seller’s father. The seller is upfront about everything anyone would likely ask questions about with this car. Though not a traditional survivor, this Chevelle has certainly lived an interesting life! Would you continue to drag race it? Or reinstall the original drivetrain and keep it as a cool survivor?

Comments

  1. Dean maxey

    I myself would probably bring this car back to the origina, But with such a great back story to go along with it. Plenty of other cars to make into drag cars I would bring this one back to the original.

  2. Bob

    There is no question that it is a desirable car, but without an engine (and transmission?), my opinion is that the price that was bid should have been enough to get the car.
    I have a 67 original 396 350hp that would fit pretty nicely under the hood. :-)

    • Steve R

      The original engine and transmission come with the car.

      Steve R

    • Alex

      Original motor and trans come with, it says.

    • Kevin St.Pierre

      I have a 67 chevelle it would fit better

  3. Helmut Member

    Not many SS Chevelles with such presentable original paint like this one. I would preserve what can be preserved, like paint, vinyl top and interior, and rebuild the original motor… but try to preserve as much patina under the hood as possible.

    Probably a good thing I didn’t see this before the auction ended???

  4. Barzini

    It does not surprise me that $28K was not enough to own it. How many other cars in this condition are there with similar documentation, miles and history?

    I am always impresssed with sellers like this who do their best to honestly represent their cars.

    Great post. I’ll be thinking about this car all week.

  5. JohnD

    Great car and provenance you don’t see very often. I lean toward re-installing the original engine/trans, finding the right wheels, and getting it road-worthy. Sharp color, and yes it’s nice to see an honest upfront seller. That alone is worth a premium.

  6. 68 custom

    Nice car wonder what it will sell for? A friend of mine purchased a 69 GTO that was a drag car back in the 80 it had less then 8k on it and was perfect, smelled like a new car!

  7. JohnD

    Paint is amazing. Didn’t know the factory did a painted black top? I’d leave those stickers just as they are under the trunk lid. Very cool!

  8. Reid Hall

    Great survival car although there is no mention of this being a true super sport,good color combination, as well as a bucket & console model. However there is mention of ss badges being changed, is this factory, and or dealer install, big question. Mileage seems to be fairly right to me.Looks like a repaint to me,probably some time in the last 10 years or so. The reason the top was painted satin ,and or gloss black, is this probably was a vinyl top car .25k-35k way to much 1k-5k maybe, remember guys putting back to like original will cost a lot of time and effort.

    • Rodent

      It’s a 138 VIN, so it’s a real SS. The firewall tag shows Madeira Maroon and black, just as the seller claims. I don’t remember ever seeing a 2 door with a painted roof like this, but it was available and the tag agrees with the colors present now.

  9. STEVE

    Factory 4:56 gears werent steep enough, so 5:13s were installed…Holy Schnikeys!!!

    • Chevelle SS

      1/8 mile drag strip duty, no doubt.

      • Rocco

        I think 1/4 mile times as shown.

  10. jimbosidecar

    I wonder if I know this car. A friend bought a very low mileage Chevelle SS 396 in about 1973. The reason for the low miles is it was used as a drag racer. He got it back to stock, street legal around 1974. I always wondered about him and his car. If this car has any history in NH then I would bet it’s the same car.

    • Andrew Tanner Member

      The seller’s parents bought this car new and it went directly from the parents to the seller, so unfortunately it is unlikely that this is the same car.

  11. Joe

    If the 396 is indeed numbers matching to this car it is a true SS because the only way to get this engine in 1966 was with the SS package, plus the first 5 digits of the VIN will identify it. As far as price owner made a mistake by not taking 28k. Prices of 60’s cars are starting to flatten out because Baby Boomers that are reliving their glory days are dying off.

    • Jay E.

      I’m not sure they are dying off, rather there are so many great options for new cars for the same or less money than these old cars that it is easier and more comfortable to drive new. I’m a boomer, but got tired of the maintenance, ride, handling and lack of features and comfort. Not interested in tying up $35-75K on something sitting in the garage, I want to drive.

      • Tyler

        Exactly right!

  12. Troy S

    I bet this cool looking Chevy ran very strong with that 427 rat motor back in the day. Really nice looking car too.

    • Rocco

      The seller shows time slips from the early days of his dads ownership.

  13. rough diamond Member

    My guess is the Seller used eBay to find some serious Buyers like that Dennis fella who is RR’s friend, and that the car was sold or will be sold to a private party outside of eBay.

  14. Joe

    I would definitely make the car an SS clone and drive it! Friend of mine has an original and it is just a super vehicle to cruise in! the occasional spectator drag race would definitely happen but that would be the extent of the drag racing.

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