Plane Jane Tri-Five: 1955 Chevrolet 210

Ain’t she a beauty? It’s a shiny tri-five, has only 2 doors, a V8, and three pedals so what’s not to love? Well, there is the steep $22,000 asking price. The price would be reasonable for a car in top condition. How much does the original survivor condition help? It’s listed on Craigslist in Assonet, Massachusetts. This Chevy has been a one family car and was stored for twenty-five years. It will be interesting to see if there is any documentation to back up the claim that it only has 59,000 miles. Somehow it has escaped being molested. They have done the brakes, fuel system, new tires and all that was necessary to get it running nicely. It was repainted in the 1970s. It looks like it just needs seat covers and a new headliner to be ready to enjoy.

It’s looking all original inside including the rubber floor mat and lack of a radio. The seat belts were an aftermarket addon of course.

This engine compartment looks about as original as it gets. It could use a good cleaning and detail or it could just be left original.

The underside appears to have only surface rust. The bolt and body washer must be where the seatbelts were installed. As long as the floors stay solid they should work, but that was not the optimal way to mount a seat belt.

There are many possibilities for this old Chevy. If it is as nice as it appears in the pictures, it could make a nice old driver. Sadly, it would also be a great starting point for anything from a resto-mod to a custom project. It will need upholstery and lots of rubber bits to make it a really nice old driver. If this car is as nice as it appears, what do you think would be a fair price? What would you do with this Chevy if it was in your garage?

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Comments

  1. LMK Member

    Nice…

    • john chump

      $1500

    • Bob

      This is worth every dime as it is rust free. It was listed in Hemmings for 28 K so he has lowered the price

      Like 1
  2. Tort Member

    Price seems very fair to me considering it is in original condition and with the floors in good shape the body shouldn’t need a lot of attention. Chrome and stainless looks good too. I do see that someone swapped out the 210 steering wheel for one out of a Bel Air.

  3. Tort Member

    After looking at the interior photo again it is NOT a Bel Air wheel.

  4. Chuck Cobb

    If you look at the interior photo, it appears that someone smoked in the car and the ash tray was used extensively. Bet it still stinks.

    • Loco Mikado

      97% of the cars from the 70’s on back were smoked in.

      Like 1
  5. Coventrycat

    Love it as is.

    Like 1
  6. Carmandan

    I have to agree that a asking price of $22k isn’t bad. Might be able to buy for a little less. You could not built a rough one for this price.

  7. DB

    Looks great, seems like a fair price, too

  8. Beatnik Bedouin

    Nice car…

    Interesting comment about the seatbelt mountings. That was common practice in the 1960s when people were having belts installed in older cars – I know, I did more than my fair share of seatbelt installations, and the hole-in-the-floor-backed-with-a-heavy-flat-washer method was standard operating procedure.

    • Loco Mikado

      Some of the car manufactures started making provisions for seat belt mounting in the early mid 60’s. I know my dad when he went to install seat belts the ’63 Rambler had the plugged holes in place but the ’59 Rambler he had to drill holes in the floor.

      • Gregs43

        I think that starting in 1963, all cars had to have front seat belts installed at the factory. I have slept a lot since then!

      • leiniedude leiniedude Member

        Growing up, my Dad always cut the seatbelts out of his new cars.

      • SquareLeft

        According to the research I’ve done, Wisconsin had the first seat belt law in the U.S., which required the belts to be installed on the two ‘outboard’ front seating positions. That was in 1961.

        Again, from my research, GM began fitting front seat belts to their cars as standard equipment part-way through the 1964 model run. (Very likely on January 1, 1964.)

        As far as federal legislation goes, seat belts were not ‘universally’ required until the 1968 model year. Reference: Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard 208.

        Note: $22k isn’t far off the mark for this car. You might buy it for a little less, but Tri-Fives don’t come cheap anymore!

  9. DRV

    My kind of showcar.

  10. Chris In Australia

    Tubs, LS , custom interior, 20 inch wheels. Kidding! I’d clean it up and and enjoy.
    I’d upgrade the seat belts and perhaps dual circuit discs.

  11. MrF

    Really surprising to see a New England car this rust free

  12. Classic Steel

    My first car was a 55 Chevy belair hardtop
    Black paint with a 327 four speed , headers etc!

  13. Rube Goldberg Member

    Another blast from the past. When growing up, ( 1960’s) an elderly neighbor across the street had this exact car ( not sure about the V8) He almost never drove it, and we only saw it through the windows of his garage door, so we weren’t sure what it was, but we knew it was a green ’55, 2 door. Years passed, and the guy died. While at my parents, (1970’s) I saw the widow was moving out, and the car was in front of the house being loaded on a flatbed,,it was in perfect condition and looked exactly like this.

  14. 86_Vette_Convertible

    This is one I’d find a suitable parking spot for. Looks great, a little maint and reupholster the seat and there would be little else that needs to be done to it from what I can see.

  15. morrow

    if ths car was in n.c it would be in my building love them

  16. Gordon

    One word. Gasser

  17. CJ

    $22K seems a bit optimistic for a bottom of the line car. Needs complete interior, engine detailing, plus probably a hundred small items that need attention and who knows what else. $10K big money for this Tri-5!

  18. Cary A Gay

    Back in the 70’s, the man across the street from us bought a 72 Chevrolet Nova. He hardly ever use it because he also had a pickup truck. Twelve years past by and I saved $3500 dollars cash to buy the car, and I went to him and made my offer. He turned me down and said he was going to give it to his nephew. Two weeks later his nephew totaled the car. Years later I spoke to him. At that time I had a Oldsmobile Aurora and he told me that he like the way that I took care of my cars. Then he said that his wife had told him that he should have sold the car to me, at least he would be able to still see it in the same conditions as he bought it from the dealership.

    • Neil

      Dude,
      I factory ordered a brand spankin’ new ’72 SS Nova with a 396 4 speed with Strato Bucket seats when I got back from The Big Green. I had a few months left to serve and when she showed up I was just frantic. Sadly, in ’74 during the gas crisis, I sold it for 2 grand and got a ’74 Toyota Celica GT. The Celica was sweet, but never took the place in my heart for the Nova.

      • Marty Parker

        1970 was the last year the big block was available for the Nova.

      • Yoopermike

        The Big Green ?

  19. Gus

    Nice ride. My buddy and I bought one almost the same color but only with a 6 cylinder. $50 (25 each. I got my licence about a year later and gave my half to him. We still talk about that car 50 years later..

  20. alan leonard

    Not enough doors!!!!!!!!!!!

  21. alan leonard

    Not enough doors!!!!!!!!!!!!

  22. Jack Quantrill

    The tri-fives got it right, the whole Big Three!

  23. Glen

    Plain Jane sure is pretty. Note the spelling of plain, this isn’t an aircraft!

  24. PETER P BAUSYS

    I do not consider a repainted car to be in “original survivor condition” but maybe that’s just me.

  25. Cary A Gay

    I feel ya bro.

  26. GMC OLDSMOBILE MAN

    I feel ya bro.

  27. Rustytech Member

    Nice to see one that hasn’t been cut up and restomoded to death. $22k doesn’t seem too far off the mark to me considering rust buckets are being listed regularly at $5k+.

  28. Brad

    Refurbish seats, headliner, add carpeting, OEM AM tube radio, and OEM clock, add vintage A/C, replace master cylinder with a dual cylinder, and drive anywhere. Nice ride. I learned to drive in my Grand Dad’s ’56.

  29. GMC Oldsmobile Man

    Cool!

  30. charlie Member

    I put lap seat belts from Sears in my ’56 Chevy in l959, front and rear, 6 sets, “airplane style” which is not what is used on commercial jets today, but what was used on small planes then, but used a much bigger plate under the floor figuring it would spread the load better. I put shoulder belts in the back of my ’83 Pontiac, the threaded plates were there, under the trim, since Canada was already requiring them, front had them. Eventually the ’56 Chevy rusted out (rarely left New England) and had any big force pulled on them I am sure they would have been useless.

  31. 1st Gear

    Leave it as it is-it’s what ya don’t see that makes it right-I’d build it to run streetable 10sec 1/4 miles,or an all out gassed-which these cars were put on earth for. Two Lane Blacktop style-only quicker. Thank you very much.

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