Unrestored Short-Bed: 1971 Chevrolet C-10

These old C-10s have never been unpopular, and this one is no exception. While ’67-’72 Chevrolet pickups are relatively easy and affordable to come by, the short wheelbase models are typically the most sought after and thus often the most difficult to come by. Difficult being a relative term of course! What makes this particular 1971 Chevrolet C-10 a great find other than the short wheelbase is the fact that it is mostly original, rust-free, low-mileage, and in fully functional order. With a rare combination of such positive attributes, this truck will likely bring the seller a nice chunk of change. Find it here on eBay in California with bidding at $6,655 and no reserve. 

Although the interior was originally green, the seller states that it has been redone in black and has accrued some tasteful upgrades including heated seats and a Retro Sound bluetooth stereo that retains the original look while giving the user all of the modern radio features. I think the original interior color would’ve looked better, but the black certainly accents the faded yellow exterior! This would be an excellent in-town daily driver, work truck, or farm truck. These trucks can comfortably fit three average sized passengers on the bench seat, and although it probably doesn’t move very quickly the three-on-the-tree shifter can be a lot of fun!

Under the hood is the Chevrolet 250 inline six cylinder engine, which is more than adequate for most average use, and a lot of above average use as well! This truck was reportedly originally purchased by a California vineyard, and the seller is the second owner after the vineyard. Vineyard use would explain the excellent condition, low mileage, and smaller engine. Some fresh paint on the valve cover and breather would go a long way, but other than that I would leave this 250 alone. It has been converted to HEI ignition at some point in the past, and has new exhaust. The seller is including a Vintage Air air conditioning setup with the sale.

This C-10 has seen daily work, daily driving, and is ready to move on to its next home. This truck would be the perfect small project for someone looking to get into the hobby, or a fantastic daily for a Chevrolet truck enthusiast who wants to leave his high-powered trucks at home most days. Would you restore it or use it as a truck?


  1. Sam

    What a great find! I’m not a fan of urethaned patina but I think I would protect the hood and roof, pale yellow rhino line the bed floor and enjoy!

    This series of c10 Chevy and GMC has a nice clean look. You can see the influence 30 years later with hated S10 PU and Blazer suv.

    Kudos to the current owner for selective/good taste in upgrades balanced with preservation.

  2. Steve R

    Honest truck. Good ad.

    Steve R

  3. John M.

    The bidding thus far has topped $8400 and there’s still a little more than a day left before the hammer drops. Don’t be surprised if the final bid goes well north of $10 grand before it’s all said and done.

  4. JamestownMike

    I had a rust free Arizona 69 C10 short fleetside with 71 front disc brakes and 71 rear end (so it was 5 lug, front & rear). Mine had the rare factory leaf srings in the rear (not coils). The leaf springs would carry more of a load (unmodified)…….but i’d imagine rear coils are the way to go if your lowering and air bagging it?? My truck had FACTORY A/C, tilt wheel, tach, black & white houndstooth bucket seats, console, power steering, power brakes, 350 V8, 350 turbo automatic. Did a frame off show quality restoration and had it painted Tornado red. Wish I still had it!

    Like 1
  5. jdjonesdr

    Wow. What a sweet little truck. I think I’d use it as is if I had it.

  6. jw454

    I had a 1970 short bed but, mine was the step-side version. I always liked the fleet sides better. Mine was a 350/350 and pretty thirsty. It did about 10 mpg. in town. I like this little 6 cylinder. I don’t think you’d be too comfortable on a 1k mile round trip but, for your daily cruising around town it would be great.

  7. Paul

    These trucks never went out of style. The 250 chevy 6cyl was the most durable motor around back then.

    • Mountainwoodie

      I have one in my ’72 C 10.but its a thirsty little bugger……..

  8. Rspcharger Rspcharger

    I’ve had a 69 C10 long bed for 4 years now that I use every weekend to haul stuff, as they were intended. Lucky for me it looks nice too. Everything is repairable by even novice mechanics like me.

  9. Gary

    I don’t believe it’s an honest unmolested pickup after seein interior picture show a A/C cab while under the hood there’s nothing but a heater box… and says he’ll include a vintage air unit…
    Still a nice truck

    • Tyler

      That’s not an AC cab. Those are Vintage Air vents that have been added. He has just never gotten around to finishing the install.

  10. CaCarDude

    Someone correct me if I am wrong but California Black Plates ended in 1969, so just how did he come up with the paper work and get pre 1970 plates issued to this truck, if it is a ’71? The blue plates with yellow lettering started in 1970 and continued till mid to late 70’s, I don’t know but something doesn’t jive here with the title or Reg. Will be some headaches at DMV if bought by another CA resident. These are nice pick em ups and are in big demand here on the west coast.

    • Steve R

      This truck has commercial plates, those were issued well after the passenger cars switched to blue. According to a friend of mine whose wife recently retired from the DMV after 40+ years, the switch was made as each individual DMV offices exhausted their supply of black plates. Cars and trucks from rural areas would would likely have been issuing black plates much later than those sold in urban areas, as stated in the ad, this truck was sold in a rural area.

      I recently sold a black plate 1970 Ranchero which I bought from the original owner, I still have a 1970 Nova that has its original blue plates. Both were sold new in the SF Bay Area.

      Steve R

  11. Keith

    Sold for $9k

    Like 1

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