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Running Project: 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air

Originally, this 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air was an Ivory White & Onyx Black car, but was painted sometime during its existence to the red and white you see here. It appears to have held up well and looks great in this color combo. To bring this project car home to your garage, the seller would like $13,500. The listing only notes a partial VIN but the car does have a clear title. It is located in Alpine, California. Thank you, Pat L., for the tip. You can view more on craigslist.

1957 Chevrolet Bel Air 2 Door Hardtop

While the car itself is a project, it is a running and driving one, even if there are some catches. The 283 cubic inch V8 is connected to a leaking automatic transmission. Sadly, the shifter was moved to the floor from the column, and the work was not performed well. The seller has provided photos of the car on a lift, showing the entirety of the underside, along with taking the wheels off to show the wheel wells.

1957 Chevrolet Bel Air 2 Door Hardtop

The interior looks charming and complete. Besides the floor-mounted shifter, everything looks to be in place. That is good because there are rust spots on the body that need tending too. According to the listing, the seller has already performed a disc brake conversion up front, installed new leaf springs, and new bushings and steering linkages. They also note that other, unspecified, parts are included.

1957 Chevrolet Bel Air 2 Door Hardtop

Part of the price are the aluminum rims. If you are not interested in those, and only have the steel wheels, the price goes down by $1,000. The seller does note that a lot of bodywork will have to be done to get this Bel Air to be a show stopper. They have done a lot of hard work though and that should certainly be appreciated. This car will hopefully find a good home to someone soon so it can get back to being on the road again.


  1. rpol35

    Actually seems reasonable for what it is, especially considering that it is a Belair two door hardtop.

    The floor shift can be unconverted but the seat bottom will need to be reconstructed or replaced.

    Like 4
    • rpol35

      Follow-up thought, the transmission looks like a Turbo-hydramatic 350 which is a huge improvement over a Powerglide which would have been original – definitely not a circa 1957 PG. The listing doesn’t state which automatic however.

      As for the leaking, it is not a big issue. It’s either the front seal or the pump seal, both of which are straightforward to remedy but the transmission would have to be removed to effect repair.

      Like 3
  2. Bob S

    I would buy this car in a heartbeat. I love the 57 hardtops, and feel the car could be stabilized and used as a fun summer cruise car, or restored later.
    The leaky tranny doesn’t bother me, and I think the car is priced fairly.

    Like 3
  3. Classic Steel

    The seat looks like an easy remedy of pulling the seat and removing the cover and probably welding in some strips to fix it and strengthening springs. Loose the shifter and replace horseshoe shifter with a mr gasket old school looking floor shifter and if needed adjust brackets to slightly scoot up towards dash.

    The price is a good price for a no post hardtop.
    I prefer these over post models . Had a 55 no post in HS 👀👍
    The original wheels look good so keep them if the treads are great too . Take the grand off. If treads are bad negotiate a lil off . These old school cars look better with classic wheels..

    Like 2
  4. Will Fox

    I’ll pass. I’d never in a zillion years shop for a `57 Chevy anyway, but this one has all sorts of red flags to me. Just, no. When it comes to tri-five Chevys, keep shopping. There are literally thousands to pick from, so no shortage.

    Like 1
  5. Bob C.

    The price seems very reasonable for a 57 chevy. As for the floor shifter, what was he thinking?

    Like 6
  6. John Calabro

    Another ’57 Chevy. How thrilling.

    Like 2
  7. Carcrazy

    No brainer.
    Excellent deal on most iconic classic car.
    Every part is available reasonably and always holds its value.
    I would buy it if I didn’t own one already

    Like 1
  8. bigdoc

    I always wanted a 57 Chevy. Best looking car ever made IMHO. Price is good. Hmmmm

    Like 1
  9. TimM

    It is a good deal!!! When I saw the floor shifter I laughed and said ouch!! Just cause it hurt my eyes!! The column shifter would have been a much easier fix then butchering the seat and putting the early carmaro horse shoe shifter in there!! Im always amazed at what other people’s definition of cool is!!! However cutting the original seat was not cool!!!

    Like 2
  10. PatrickM

    Ad deleted. May have sold.

    Like 0

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