Gold Medalist Edition: 1976 Chevy Nova

It’s no secret that GM loves its special editions. Even today, you can walk into any Chevrolet dealer and ride away in a “limited” edition vehicle with special graphics and paint. Whether that vehicle will present any sort of added value to collectors when it’s 30 years old is the question for today, as this Gold Medalist edition Chevy Nova here on eBay is one of a very few ever made. 

Now, the word “made” is a trick here, because these were identical to any other Nova on the assembly line in 1976 aside from the special gold paint and some emblems. Built to commemorate that year’s Olympic games, the Gold Medalist edition was a limited allotment, with each dealer able to purchase one Medalist car. The California blue plates indicate long-term California ownership, and the plate frame may even indicate which dealer took delivery of this example when new.

Since little data is available about the exact specifications surrounding the Medalist cars, we have to rely on various Nova expert sources that say a V8 car with air conditioning was the “rarest” Medalist configuration available. Again, I don’t think it adds much value, but you may disagree. Curiously, the seller says they drove it up to 55 m.p.h. on the freeway, but also advises “….this car should be fully serviced before attempting to start; including at the minimum, new battery, carburetor adjustment or rebuild, rubber hoses/belts replaced, fluids replaced & gas tank flush.”

The price is $4K with the option to submit the best offer. If the Gold Medalist is too mainstream for you, how about a pair of hatchback Novas? These two are in the large Georgia collection we’ve listed on Barn Finds as an Exclusive, so be sure to check out the listing and contact me for more information of the Nova hatchbacks catch your eye.

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  1. Rex Kahrs Member

    This is precisely the kind of car I get burned on. It looks pretty good, and ostensibly doesn’t need much to get it running and driving. So you start putting a little money into it, but things start adding up, and before you know it you’ve got 6 grand into the thing. And at that point you haven’t touched the interior, which, on a cheaply-made car like a ’76 Chevy in California, is gonna need some restoration.

    So you drive it around a bit, and decide that you like it, but you don’t love it enough to keep it and insure it. So then you try to sell it, but no takers at 6 grand, or 5 or 4 grand, so you let it go for $3500. At that point you’ve just donated $2500 bucks to the buyer, as if you’re some kind of benevolent old car whisperer. Hyperbole? I assure you not.

  2. RoughDiamond Member

    @Rex Kahrs-what a prefect explanation of what happens so often on those cheaper odd ball special edition models or cheaper cars in general.

  3. Superdessucke

    Gold medalist?? If I was going to get this as a gold medal I would seriously consider throwing the event!

  4. CapNemo

    I hope this thing doesn’t decide to get an operation and turn itself into a truck.

  5. Miguel

    With an Ebay name like soggy_bottom_ranch_foundation, it sounds like this car was donated, but it doesn’t say that in the ad.

    Also the plates expired in May 2012, but no explanation on that either.

    They imply in the ad the miles are original, than at the bottom they have a statement that says unless specifically stated the miles are original, don’t assume they are.

    Sounds fishy.

  6. Vance

    Here’s one for all you guys that wanted to throw your money at that that V6 Buick Skylark/Apollo a.few weeks back. Rex put his hammer square on the nail. These cars are not desirable to begin with unless you find a diamond in the rough that hits all your buttons. Good paint, body, interior, engine, wheels, tires, etc. Then it’s a 5-6k car and your not dumping your wallet into something that you will never get a return on. If money is no object, then have at it. Here in Arizona it’s maybe a 1500.00 – 2000.00 car.

  7. CCFisher

    For Chevrolet in the mid-70s, one car per dealer would have been over 6000 cars. If even half the dealers ordered one, it wasn’t particularly rare in its time.

  8. Frank M

    Price is down to $3500. Sounds more reasonable.

  9. Chinga-Trailer

    These alleged ‘special editions’ could only possibly maybe perhaps have even a little bit of slightly more but maybe not, value if 1) One really wanted one when new and 2) That someone still remembers or cares enough to pay the premium. Heck, even a group of local dealers could and did get together, decide to make their own ‘local edition’ maybe incorporating the name of their town, and then get a decal maker to make the stickers that they applied to create their own ‘rare’ special editions that differed only because of the decals and the made-up name. So, you could still discovers something like, oh, say a “Tucson Scorpion” Chevette or a “Dallas Omni Dudmobile.” Years ago I worked for a dealer who was good at making up stuff like that and PEOPLE BOUGHT IT!

  10. Bob C.

    Looks like a 350, hope so. If it’s the 305 in its first year NBT (nothing but trouble ).

  11. Hank

    How do I contact about the GA Novas?

  12. stillrunners

    Geez – can anyone make a comment to save this old Nova ? Yes your going to sink maybe 5 grand in the drive train – so what – how many payments is that on a new car ? Then the interior – what another less than 2 grand – so what are the payments up to ? Less than 10 grand ? Then you have a solid car to drive another 10 or 20 years if you take care of the mechanics. Geez a Louise we should just start a ” Crush Anonymous” site for these old has beens like us. .


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