EXCLUSIVE: 1969 Chevy Nova With Sleeper Potential!

Update – This one sold to one of our readers. Thanks for all the interest!

If you follow the site then you may be feeling a little Déjà vu right now. That’s because it’s only been a month since we featured my very similar-looking ’68 Nova. That car received dozens of inquiries and sold to one of our readers within two hours of listing it! So, when this one surfaced here locally a few weeks later, I knew I’d better grab it. This one is just as solid and is actually in better condition mechanically. It runs, shifts, and stops great. With just a few needs it should make for a fun and affordable project.

This car was purchased from a local farmer who inherited it from his Aunt. She had bought the car brand new and took great care of it. Somewhere along the line, it was resprayed but otherwise appears to be all original. From the looks of the paint and rubber gaskets, the car did spend some time outside. Amazingly the floors and trunk are solid and the only rust showing is predictably in the rear quarters. Take a look at the photos below to see how solid this thing is.

Luckily, this Nova has the original front bench seat still in place. Many were swapped out for bucket seats long ago so this was a nice surprise. The upholstery is in decent condition for its age, but the driver’s side back cushion blew out (hench the plastic bag covering in the photos). The rubber floor covering is in great shape as are the door panels. I would plan on redoing the seats, headliner, rear shelf, and armrest pads. A dash pad might be a good idea too if the cracks bother you.

I had suggested that the inline-six be swapped out for a V8 in the other car, but this engine runs so well that I would have a hard time messing with it. That’s also a 250 which was the larger six-cylinder option. The engine starts right up, idles smoothly, and has good power. The brakes work very well too so no worries there. The only things I would want to address right away are the old front tires and the rusty exhaust pipe. The driver’s side door hinge is also catching a little. Otherwise, we haven’t found any other major issues.

If you look closely you’ll notice a couple of bullet holes on the driver’s side. That may mean more bodywork to some of you, but I think they are kind of cool. If we didn’t have a shop full of projects trying to pull us away from the computer already, I would just address the interior and maintenance needs and then enjoy the car. This would be a fun one to take on cruises and to local car shows. The patina will probably attract just as big a crowd as the shiny high-dollar muscle cars do and you will feel good knowing you spent a lot less!

This car is located in Boise, Idaho and I would like to get $5,500. I have a clear title and inspections are welcome. Wire transfer is my preferred payment method and shipping is the responsibility of the buyer. Please contact me here via email if you’re interested. So, if this one was in your garage, what would you do it? Would you follow my suggested route or would you drop a big block into it? We have featured a couple of six to eight swaps (396, 454) that turned out pretty sweet…

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  1. Chebby Staff

    It’s perfect just as it is!

    “You used to drive that crappy blue Chevy Nova…what are you driving now?”


    Like 6

    What about that 78? Ford in the background??

    I like the character of this Nova as it is too Chebby. I’d be tempted to lay down a layer of flat black after touching up the rust on the quarters and drive it as is for awhile. I think I’d keep my eyes & ears open for a 454 eventually and dive into that swap at some point later on. Sure would be a good entry point for the younger generation! With more power a disk brake swap would be a must-have tho. Drums should be fine with the sixer. Nice find!

    Like 1
    • Jesse Mortensen Jesse Mortensen Staff

      Sorry, those aren’t our trucks. Sounds like a good plan. The drum brakes on this thing actually work surprisingly well!

      Like 1
      • TCOPPS TCOPPS Member

        Those aren’t your trucks….Yet…

        Like 1
  3. William Shields

    Come on! Aunties Nova with a couple bullet holes in it?
    There has to be a story behind that Jesse.

    Like 3
  4. Ryck Ryckman

    My great aunt’s 72 nova was a 4 door, metallic copper/white top. It had a 350 w th350 trans, power steering and manual drum brakes. It became my sisters car then we put a torque cam, intake and a 600 cfm 4 bbl on it w stock exhaust. Had a bad cam lobe so why not ;) We would go hunting for camaros and mustangs with it lol! It went like stink but thought I was going to snap the brake pedal off a couple of times trying to get it to stop!

    Like 2
  5. Skorzeny

    Jesse, rear deck? Huh? I don’t see a rear deck on this car…

    • Jesse Mortensen Jesse Mortensen Staff

      Meant to say shelf. Thanks for catching that.

      Like 1
  6. Patrick Farmer

    Is this the Nova from Beverly Hills Cop or Goodwill Hunting? I see a Nova and I think cheap Camaro. Nothing sleeper about it. One of the most wicked Novi I have ever seen was one with a very hot 1969 Z/28 302 in it. This was in 1989 in Houston. The solid lifter motor was a dead giveaway as a ringer, not a sleeper. A cop would peg a Nova as a hot rod, unless it was super quite.

    Like 1
  7. Dan

    Real bullet holes are infinitely better than those silly, unconvincing fake bullet hole stickers. If I modified a car such as this one, I’d swap in a hot small-block and a 4-speed.

    Like 1
  8. Ralph

    PRNDL1L2-its a Turbo 350 car with a 6 kind of odd for a Nova, these were all usually PowerGlides even by this vintage, its strange that someone spent money on that, and not much else in the way of options for this Nova.

    Like 4
  9. Stangalang

    Definitely no v8 swap..build that 250 correctly and turbo it..mmmm yeah. Too many v8 swaps and the inline 250 is a strong engine

    Like 2
  10. TimM

    Lots of pictures!!! Woooohooooo!!!!

  11. Denis

    4 5 4 I have a spare

  12. BigBlocksRock

    Owned 4 68-72 Novas.
    Have a fuel injected 396 in a 69 now. Not quite sure what it is but, I love ’em!

  13. Jake Jake Member

    Auntie was hanging out with some shady characters at the Friday night fish fry and Queen of Hearts. The Nova got some speed holes out of the deal.

    Like 1
  14. Del

    Nothing says USA more than Bullet holes.

    Car is not worth 1000 bucks

    Like 3
    • Jesse Mortensen Jesse Mortensen Staff

      @Del – You’re kidding right? If you find any solid ones that cheap please send them my way!

      Like 1
      • Del


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