Too Far Gone? 1971 Chevrolet Chevelle

And now for something from the “What happened?” department, here is a rather broken-in 1971 Chevrolet Chevelle. There are few images and fewer details so what you see, is what you get. Nevertheless, let’s take a (quick) look and see what we have. Located in Stafford Springs, Connecticut, and available here on craigslist for $1,600 is this Chevelle hardtop. Thanks to Bill C. for this tip!

This Chevy is listed as having a V8 engine and a four-speed transmission but there is nothing stated more specific than that in the listing. The seller claims, “I was told it is a Chevelle SS not sure maybe you can decode the cowl tag…” I did and it’s not. This Chevy is a basic, Chevelle two-door hardtop that is verified by the “3437” designation on the trim tag. The tag wouldn’t indicate SS status in 1971, but the SS option was based on the Malibu, code 3637. This car did originally have a V8 engine but it could have been one of four different motors with horsepower ranging from 200 to 300. There is a four-speed shifter evident in the interior image but whether the transmission is original to this Chevelle or not is hard to say.

The body of this Chevy has seen better days, dents and rust abounds. In the image above, the front end appears to have experienced one of those “didn’t see the brake lights in time” moments but the alternate (lead) image shows signs of repairs – unusual. There are mismatched wheels though the front left one is from a ’69 or ’70 Chevelle SS and the body just has that “I’m beat!” aura. Knowing the rust magnet that these GM “A” bodies can be, and the fact that this Chevelle has taken up residency in Connecticut (it was built in Arlington, Texas, not that it matters), there’s no telling what the floors and frame are like. I’d bet dollars to doughnuts, probably not too good.

The interior looks like the swamp creature has chosen it as its domicile. This is only the only image of the inside included but there would seem to be very little of benefit remaining in there. The rust and general degradation indicate that either the windows have been down for a very long time, at the least, or significant water intrusion has occurred beyond that. Circling back to the thought around the underside condition of this Chevelle, note the daylight that can be spied through the collapsed floor behind the driver’s seatback.

This 1971 Chevelle, at one time, would have resembled this promotional image but it seems highly unlikely that it ever will again. The reality is the seller is only asking $1,600 but whether there is even $1,600 worth of value here is questionable. And the statement that just nails it is, “bill of sale only although I am waiting for the title from the owner she says she will look for this week, calls only do two scams I will not answer text”. So there’s no title yet, and as for scams, well, gentle reader, you be the judge. This unfortunate Chevelle seems better destined to China as scrap as opposed to seeing an automotive resurrection, but who knows, hope springs eternal right?


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  1. Arthell64 Member

    No such thing is to far gone. The question is if there is someone out there that wants to spend the time and money bringing it back? Someone said on BF they can install all the sheet metal rebuild the engine redo the interior and paint it for $1200 total cost to make it a driver is 12k. This car would be great car for someone like that.

    Like 4
  2. Steve R

    This is not an SS.

    The ad is gone. I’d say it’s a parts car in most parts of the country. It could be restored, but why? Patient shoppers will wait until something better comes along. There will be plenty on nicer cars coming into the market in the near future, the pool of buyers will also shrink causing prices to drop for all but the nicest and most desirable models this is something that happens every recession.

    Steve R

  3. jerry z

    For $1600, this is a great parts car. Not surprised it gone already.

    Like 1
  4. don

    Stafford has a nice speedway there , I’m surprised this one escaped getting used for a stock car back when these were popular platforms for racing.

    Like 1
  5. TimM

    If it were an SS car it might be worth the time and money being they bring more money when done!! The time and money for a Malibu at the end of the day you might have been better off with the amphacar!! Both cars will put you under water!!!

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