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Noteworthy Nova: 1962 Chevrolet Chevy II 400

We cover 1962 vintage Chevrolets with regularity but they’re almost always full-size cars, Corvettes, and occasionally, Corvairs. As for the newly introduced Chevy II, not so much so. As a matter of fact, I had to go back three years to find a post. And for that reason, I’m happy to present a 1962 Chevrolet Chevy II “400” convertible for your review. This restored drop-top is located in Loveland, Colorado and is available, here on craigslist for $30,000. A tip of the hat goes to Mark _K for this discovery!

Chevrolet was sorta late to the compact party when the Chevy II was introduced for model-year ’62. I say “sort of” because they dipped their toe, actually jumped in with both feet, in model year ’60 with the Corvair. But the Corvair, with its air-cooled rear-mounted engine, was a non-traditional compact at least compared to Ford’s Falcon and Plymouth’s Valiant – compacts with a more traditional front-mounted water-cooled engine and rear-wheel drive. Enter the Chevy II with its three trim levels, including the top-drawer “Nova”. According to Nova Resource, the Chevy II/Nova put up some impressive first-year production numbers with 326K units finding new owners. Of that total, 23K were Nova 400 convertibles such as our subject car.

The seller of this Nova claims, “The car is 98% exactly original as it came off the production line…” and further explains that it was completely restored fourteen years ago. Added is, “Not a stone chip in the paint anywhere” – I can believe that as the presentation is excellent! The paint, body panels, chrome, glass, stainless, and top all show as showroom fresh. The only non-original liberty that I can detect is the fender skirts which I don’t think help this convertible’s cause but they are a matter of personal preference.

Power is provided by a 120-gross HP, 194 CI, in-line six-cylinder engine working together with a Powerglide automatic transmission. The seller mentions a rebuild with a .030 overbore has occurred along with a transmission redo that allows it to “shift perfectly“.

Where things deviate from original is inside where the seats are “nearly like the original but not the original“.  I would have to put the alteration down as a change in fabric pattern but it’s minor, the entire environment presents as brand-spankin’ new, non-original pattern or not. The big attention-getter is the dash and instrument panel, it’s a simple, economy car arrangement but glistens like it did on assembly day. And of course, the bowtie inscribed Delco pushbutton radio is a nice inclusion.

What does this Nova convertible need? Nothing, other than a new owner. But at $30 large, I’m not too sure that’s going to happen quickly. This Nova is nice, very nice, but I don’t see $30,000 worth of nice, how about you?


  1. Joe Haska

    Absolutley a beatiful car, but now way can I see 30 K for this car.

    Like 14
    • jo6pac

      My thought also. If it had a matching # 283 and 4 speed I think the price would OK

      Like 9
      • nlpnt

        That and the “almost” seats, which look like cloth in which case they’re “almost” correct for a Nova sedan or hardtop; convertibles and wagons came with all-vinyl seats.

        Like 2
      • Sunshine

        Except the Chevy II Nova CONVERTIBLE was never offered with a factory 4-speed nor a factory V-8 in the limited 2 year run of 1962 & 1963.

        Like 7
      • Bill T

        This year ChevyII was not available with a V-8. A lot of dealers did indealership engine swaps.

        Like 3
      • Chuck Dickinson

        Chevy IIs didn’t have a V-8 or a 4 spd until 64.

        Like 1
      • Vince H

        There was no V8 in a 62 Chevy 2.

        Like 0
  2. Paul R

    In ‘62 the Chevy 11 had four bolt 13” wheels.
    That was great when it came time for new tires, saved a bundle.
    So , now, after you put out 30 grand for this “econobox” you can still save on tires.
    I had a four door sedan, Chevy11 300, same engine with three in the tree.
    Also had , until very recently , a ‘62 Acadian, same engine with the powerglide transmission.
    Hey, the Acadian had a padded dash !

    Like 7
  3. Johnmloghry johnmloghry

    The times they are a changing lads. We tend to think in terms of times gone by when it comes to pricing these cars. Even still, this car should be around $20k I do believe. The little 194 was sufficient power for the 64 I once had the pleasure of caring for with its three speed manually shifted column transmission. I do like the convertible top car in red paint though, but like many others a V8 or at least standard transmission would be a preference. Nice little grocery getter for tooling around town drawing admirers and conversation as you go.

    God Bless America

    Like 3
  4. TerryJ

    Love ’em. I’ve had 5 of the early Deuces (long ago). 2 were
    62s. One was a V8 wagon . Beautiful paint from here but the “not a chip” would perhaps be lost when I removed the fender skirts about 10 minutes after I got it home. :-) Terry J

    Like 9
  5. fliphall

    A girl at my high school had it’s twin …or maybe this one? Back in ’63. Price crazy, but did you watch Mecum auctions recently? Maybe not. Still a nice ride.

    Like 2
    • Jack Barley

      If I remember correctly, there was an exact match to this car at the Mecum auction that was owned by the lead singer of the Guess Who. It sold for $12,000 but I’m not sure of the condition or originality. It did have a six cylinder.

      Like 1
  6. Mr. Monte

    Could the fender skirts be ordered as an for this car?

    Like 1
    • Chuck Dickinson

      Chevy did not offer any fender skirt accy from 55-66. They’re all aftermarket (and UGLY).

      Like 8
      • Mr. Monte

        TY for the info

        Like 0
  7. Ken Barker Ken

    Reminds me, I had this exact car in 1977
    I traded the guy a 65 mustang straight across .
    I paid $500 for the mustang.
    The good old days!!!!!

    Like 3
  8. Ed B

    This brings back many memories. It was my first new car owned from1962 to 1968, Ermine White with a black top, same color interior (original had vinyl seats), manual transmission, and certainly no fender skirts (they weren’t an option). Bought new for about $2,600.

    Like 5
  9. David Nelson

    Did these also come with a 4cyl, or is my memory fading?

    Like 1
    • TerryJ

      Actually David, The whacked down 6 cyl that was the 4 banger was the “standard” engine. The 194 six was an option. :-) Terry J

      Like 2
    • Chuck Dickinson

      4 cyl were available only on the 100 and 300 series, but not on a Nova.

      Like 1
  10. Chris W Rodenberg

    I owned a 62 nova with a 4 cylinder and a factory 4 speed, run a month on a tank of gas.

    Like 2
  11. DuesenbergDino

    Not sure I understand the term “original” in relation to this car. Complete restoration, engine rebuild, trans rebuild, wrong interior, and like others stated, V8 wasn’t offered in this car from factory. So restoration slash restomod?

    Like 0
  12. Ken Barker Ken

    The way I read it was a 6 cylinder auto matching numbers car.
    The seat reupholstered
    With wrong pattern woopty do. It’s almost exact. Don’t confuse peoples opinion with the write up!

    Like 0
  13. RexFox Member

    Very nice car, too bad about the Powerglide and I’m not sure this qualifies as a 98% original car; I think I already found 3%.

    Like 0
  14. Terry L McNutt

    I have this exact looking car EXCEPT mine is a 63’vert with bucket seats, LS3 connect and cruise drivetrain, Ford 9” diff with a Heidt 4 link rear end with coil overs and a Heidt front clip with rack and pinion and 17” FOOSE wheels. Had a 63’hardtop when I was 16. Is this car worth 30 large? Probably. What is mine worth? Don’t care. Don’t need the money.

    Like 3
  15. Bamapoppy

    Right out of high school I had a ‘62, white with cloth interior, 4-door, 6-cyl and 3-on-the-tree. It was an excellent car. Got sideswiped on the interstate, crashed, and totaled it. Ended up State Farm paid me $60 for it. Your advertising is free tonight, good hands folks.

    Like 1
  16. Paul R

    Now, don’t get me wrong , I loved my ‘62 Chevy 11. The first car I ever owned and the first is always the best , or so they say.
    Upon reflection though, not the greatest car in the world.
    For one thing, I guess to save money, there was no protective cover over the headlight plugs. Snow and slush and wet would accumulate there and the headlight would eventually burn out.
    Another quirky thing was the three in the tree shift linkage under the car , two levers side by side , and they would lock up, usually in 3rd. You’d have to crawl under the car and whack or pry them apart.
    Options? Windshield washer ! I got a kit from Canadian Tire with a foot pump.
    Never did get it installed, I used a water pistol out the window instead.
    Oh, and the interior light did not come on when you opened the driver’s door. Not broken, no switch there – must have been optional.
    On the other hand, skiing at Mont Tremblant, Quebec. We’d drive from the lodge to the ski hill
    On a bitterly cold morning, like I’m talking -30F , there was an assortment of cars in the parking lot and the only one that started was that Chevy six.
    Barely turned over but it caught on the first crank.
    The carburetor was a single barrel. You could undo the linkage and the two nuts on the studs and shake out the sediment. Plop it back on and it was good for another 20,000 miles.
    All in about 5 minutes.
    Gas was around .45c an imperial gallon and you could fill the tank for about $7.00.
    Strangely, all good memories now, even the bad stuff.

    Like 2
    • Claudio

      Ahhh , the cold quebec winters with the bitter cold , the snow, the ice , the sleet, the salt, the corrosion and the never ending language issue
      Now gyus , don’t complain as my comment is not political , it is daily news !
      I am a quebec resident so i do know !

      Like 0
      • Paul R

        The wheel wells had no liner, so the front fenders and headlight assemblies were exposed to all that slush and salt thrown off the front wheels.
        Eventually, unless tended to regularly, the front fenders would rust through at the top , just behind the headlight bezels.

        Like 1
  17. Ken Barker Ken


    We’re car guys not politicians!

    I don’t ever want to be lumped in with that crowd.
    They’re all worthless!!!!
    I’m laughing here!

    Like 0
  18. Shawn Collier

    Guess after my 1950 Plymouth auction completes, I need to put my 1962 actually original Nova up for sale. Mine has factory original paint and interior along with 42k original miles without having ever been touched. Still factory inline 6 engine backed with a 2 speed powerglide transmission. Reserve on mine will only be $20k.

    Like 1
  19. Ken Barker Ken

    Where are you located?
    That might be of interest to me! If you are serious send me a note with contact info & some pics.
    I’m from Oregon but I get around.

    Like 0

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