Project or Parts? 1968 Chevrolet Nova

Time and the elements can be kinder to some vehicles than it is to others. In the case of this 1968 Chevrolet Nova, time appears to have been its mortal enemy. The owner does admit that this could be a project car, but also that it might only be suitable for parts. Whatever its ultimate fate might be, the Nova is located in Oakhurst, New Jersey, and is listed for sale here on eBay. The owner has set a BIN of $1,200 for the Nova, although the option is there to make an offer.

It’s time for “Adam’s Theory of the Day.” This one is that this isn’t actually a Nova, but a Vega in disguise. I honestly think that the car will turn out to be far smaller than its current size once all of the various layers of paint are peeled away. The car is currently painted white (or grey, depending on the angle of the photo), but there’s plenty of evidence to suggest that below this lies a shade of dark green. Below those two colors, we can also see the original Ash Gold that it wore when it rolled off the production line. Given the amount of rust in the car, maybe all of that paint could be considered to be structural. There is plenty of rust visible in the quarter panels, and lower fenders, while the owner also admits to major rust issues with the floor and trunk pans, wheel houses, window channels, and the doors. He does say that the rear frame rails and the front sub-frame are both good. As well as rust problems, the Nova has fallen victim to a falling tree. This has inflicted a healthy dent in the roof, and the ensuing bending metal resulted in a collection of broken glass as well. This poor old Nova has really been through the mill.

The interior of the Nova is also pretty trashed, and while there are a few items that could be salvaged, there is also a lot that will be headed out in the trash. This really is a shame, because the interior trim originally featured a Gold Cloth bench seat, and the whole interior would have looked very attractive. Anyway, if the next owner is looking at the Nova purely as a parts car, there will be some useful items to be salvaged from in there.

The Nova rolled off the line featuring a 307ci V8, a 2-speed Powerglide transmission, 10-bolt rear end, and power steering. It remains mechanically complete, but the engine doesn’t run. It isn’t actually clear whether the engine even turns freely, but at least the car itself rolls freely for easy loading. Given the state of the rest of the car, it would be hard to be too optimistic about the state of the Nova’s engine, but if it is actually okay, I wouldn’t be in the least bit surprised. Look, even if the car isn’t a viable restoration project, there are still plenty of parts that could be salvaged for another car.

I hate to see classic cars deteriorate to the point where their most obvious future use is as a donor car, but I do believe that that will be the fate of this Nova. I personally believe that it is probably beyond help, but I would also love nothing more than for someone to prove me wrong on that point. If you sit down and look at all of the little parts that are on this car that could be either reused as they are, or would be viable to restore, it is certainly worth the asking price in parts alone. Do we have any readers out there who are on the hunt for a Nova parts car, or who are willing to make me eat humble pie by successfully restoring this old girl?


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  1. dave

    the 350cid/295hp with 4 speed was an incredible performer available in the 68 nova. maybe make one out this poor soul? – clean and mean

    Like 4
  2. local_sheriff

    Judging by the stretch and direction on those tie-downs it seems he’s trying to pull that poor Nova apart! Those d-rings at front also seem to wanna give up their shape.
    It has always caused me a lot of irritation why trailers like his, that are indeed designed for transport of wheeled vehicles, have so few suitable anchor points

    Like 5
  3. Dan

    The 1968 nova is a preferred year by many pure nova enthusiasts because of its uniqueness of the transition model from Chevy ll to the Nova. One year off dash and Chevy ll and Nova emblems both on the car. Hope someone will spend the cash to restore her.

    Like 2
    • JoeNYWF64

      Not to mention the bulletproof ignition switch on the dash & the simple/no interlock linkage steering column. I always have a good laugh at modern cars with crap ignition switches going bad & shift linkage jamming & vehicle needing a tow.

  4. bigblocksrock396

    All pics say 68 but, the
    front bumper & turn signals are 72

    Like 1
    • Joey 2

      The taillights tell you the truth.
      68 all day

  5. TimM

    307 with a power glide not a really desirable car but for the $1200 asking price you really can’t go wrong!!! Tons of bodywork to do!! Rear quarters probably at least the outer wheel well, trunk and most likely the floor pans!! Well with all that work maybe $600 would be better!!

  6. Gaspumpchas

    Parts car, could be fixed but this poor ol girl has been beat up every which way. Good luck to the new owner. Sorry to see a v8, 68 in this condition.


    Like 4
  7. Del

    Not sure there are even any parts in demand from this scrap heap

    Like 2
  8. KevinLee

    Time, elements, and residing in New Jersey would kill any vehicle. Time to pull the plug on this once sporty Nova.

    Like 3
  9. NovaTom

    … not even if it was a 396/375

  10. Mitch Ross Member

    Make a race car out of it

    Like 1
  11. gearjammer63

    It’s not a Nova! Prior to ’69 it was Chevy II.

    Like 1

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