Woodgrain Estate: 1970 Chevelle Concours Wagon

Update 1/5/2018 – While bidding for this wagon reached over $22k, it apparently didn’t sell and has been relisted here on eBay. There’s no word why the previous auction fell through, but this might be worth keeping an eye on!

From 12/12/2017 – After writing up that 1970 Coronet wagon last week, I got on a bit of a muscle-wagon binge. When this 1970 Chevelle wagon came across my digital desk, I couldn’t help myself so here we are! It is unclear whether this car is a clone or an original, as there is much debate about the availability of a SuperSport wagon, but based on the way it is presented I would guess that it is a very nicely done clone. Much like that SuperBee wagon clone, this car is a wonderfully put together tribute and certainly checks many boxes on the lists of muscle-wagon shoppers. Find it here on eBay in Oregon with bidding at $17,900 and reserve not met. 

According to the seller, this car is one of 3,833 ’70 wagons with two seats, i.e. there is no third row but storage space instead. It has power steering, a tilt wheel, functional factory air conditioning, a Monte Carlo woodgrain dash with a factory tachometer, cruise control, power rear window with defrost, and an AM/FM/8-track stereo. It seems like the only thing this Chevelle is missing is power windows! The seats have been recovered, and that really helps make this car look almost new. Replacement carpet and a good cleaning would have this wagon looking right!

Here’s the fun part: under the hood is a 454 cubic inch Chevrolet big-block V8. Useful in trucks for towing and hauling, a 454 can do wonders in a car even of this size! If you want to move out a wagon this size in a hurry, the 454 will have no issues lending you a hand. This engine has been upgraded with a “Holley 750 Quadrajet carburetor” (whatever that means), an Edelbrock Performer 2.0 intake manifold, an headers hooked up to Flowmaster dual exhaust. Bolted up to the engine is a GM Turbo 350 3-speed automatic transmission upgraded with a shift kit.

My favorite feature of this wagon is the tailgate. It has a dual functioning tailgate, meaning it opens both downwards and sideways. Functionality aside, this type of tailgate is something I would love to have just because it’s so neat! For me, everything about this car is done right. The color and woodgrain contrast well and speak for wagons of the era, while the drivetrain speaks for muscle cars of the same era. It’s a subtle sleeper with the only hints at modifications being the GM rally wheels and the SS badges. I would get my groceries in this, and then some! Wouldn’t you?


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  1. glen


    Like 1
    • Elky

      First year for a SS wagon was 1973…saw one all the time in San Jose in the 80’s, 454 factory 4 speed.

      Like 2
  2. Miguel

    This looks like a very well done car.

    As for the tail gate, the Ford version was much, much better. You can’t open this tail gate until you roll down that window. It gets annoying at times.

    The Ford can be opened with the window up, which is more useful.

    • Jr

      Ford rancho wagon? Would there have been a 460 in it. Probably a 5.0 16valve.

    • Andrew Tanner Member

      That does sound more convenient!

      • Miguel

        I have a 1969 Kingswood wagon so I do know what I am talking about.

        I never loaded any groceries or anything else in the back because it is too cumbersome to lower that window each time, then raise it again.

    • BMW4RunninTundra

      My 91 Chevy Caprice Wagon has the two way tailgate with the open up back glass opposed to the electric dropping back glass. About the last of the real sized wagons! Get lots of comments on her!

      • Steve

        I have a 91 Olds Custom Cruiser wagon with the same dual action rear gate and hatch style rear window. Much more convenient. I had an 82 Suburban that me and my family put over 300k miles on. It had a power rear window that was always giving up trouble!

  3. Racer417

    Love to have this car; but no debate about an SS wagon. There were none from the factory in 1970; just as there were no GTO, 442, or Gran Sport wagons. Coupe, convertible, or El Camino was it.

    • 68custom

      But for 73 you could get a Chevelle SS wagon!

      Like 1
  4. Peter R

    besides power windows, it is also missing a power seat

    • Mark

      And missing power locks.

  5. Steve R

    This is a “clone”, “SS tribute” or what’re term is popular this month. There is no debate, as mentioned above, there were no SS wagons built in 1970.

    This car he’s been brought up several times on the Chevelle forum over the last few years. If it’s still the same seller that points directly to price or quality, maybe both.

    Steve R

    • Joseph Wayne Haddock

      I wouldn’t be surprised if it was a factory big block though. Back in the day, you could build a kick ass car by checking a free boxes… I’d love to have this wagon.

      • Steve R

        A factory big block would have had a TH400 rather than a TH350. Things get changed over time, it would need a thorough in person inspection to look for some other big block specific parts that normally do not get changed.

        Steve R

      • 68custom

        The rare but factory built Malibu 400 did indeed have a big block factory equipped!

  6. Tom Barkley

    They made a Chevelle SS wagon in 73 only.

  7. Garry

    Had a ’70 Chevelle Nomad wagon. Bottom of the line, had four doors. :) Had a 327 out of a Caprice, that car would scream. Can’t imagine one with a big block.

  8. bill

    I hate to be the nit picker BUT there is no such thing as a holley Quadrajet just sayin

    • Andrew Tanner Member

      I agree! I think perhaps the seller means it is Holley and in the style of a Quadrajet? Or maybe vice-versa? I’m not sure. Either way, I have now quoted that from the ad as I know darn well that Quadrajets are made by Rochester!

      • gbvette62

        I assume what the seller is calling a “Holley Quadrajet” is actually a Holley spreadbore.

        Regular Holley’s have a square bore base (primary & secondary bores are the same size). Quadrajets have a spreadbore base, with much larger secondaries, than primaries. Holley makes a carb with a spreadbore base, designed to be used as a bolt on service replacement for the Quadrajet.

        By the way, though Quadrajets were primarily made by Rochester, Carter also made some Q-Jets.

        Like 1
  9. Larry Q

    Factory this..factory that. Who cares it’s beautiful and probably little to no rust. Wish I could afford it. I wouldn’t change a thing!!

    • Steve R

      Inaccurate information costs people their hard earned money, that’s the only reason why it matters.

      Steve R

      • Rx7turboII

        Steve, while I agree with your statement I also think that buyers should be educated enough on what they’re spending their hard-earned money on and do some simple research before they plunk down money on something.

  10. Slidey

    If an “SS deluxe” was a real option it would look like this. If I didnt know better I would think this was genuine

  11. Terrell

    Like the housing market, Hopefully this “bubble” will also burst!

  12. gbvette62

    As others have said, you could not buy an SS wagon in 1970. The first year a Chevelle wagon could be ordered as an SS was 73, but it was strictly a stripe and wheel package.

    Only Chevelle and El Camino SS’s were available with the 454. The largest engine offered in regular Chevelles was the big block LS3 402/330, with a 4bbl. There was also a small block 400 offered, that came with a 2bbl and was rated at 260 horse power. When an automatic was ordered, the small block 400 got a TH350, while the big block 402 got the TH400.

    It’s a nice wagon, and I really like 68-72 Chevelles, but I think I’d like it a lot more without the SS emblems and black stripes. To my way of thinking, the stripes and emblems just don’t go with the wood grain panels.

    Like 1
  13. curt

    I always thought that the front door armrest didnt have the built in ashtrays.i thought it was the rear doors that carried them or the ashtray was in the back of the front seat back.

  14. J Paul Member

    Nice car, but I think it would have been best to choose the woodgrain -OR- the rally stripe/SS clone treatment. Having both is kind of a mixed visual message.

    (Personally I would go the woodgrain sleeper route)

    Like 1
  15. joeinthousandoaks

    The SS hood just looks weird with wood siding. I have have done without the wood.

  16. Johnny Cuda

    I had a 1970 Chevelle Concours station wagon way back when. It was forest green with brown interior and it had the factory 307 2-barrel. I loved that wagon. This looks great! I agree with the above posts – One or the other on the stripes or the woodgrain siding. The Concours Estate came with the woodgrain siding, so I would go with the woodgrain. I love the rear window deflector or “rear spoiler’. Nice car!

    Like 2
  17. ROTAG99

    In High School we called those Carbs Rottenchester & Qudra-pukes.

    • KKW

      We called them Quadra-flush, or Quadra-toilet.

    • Steve

      I used to outrun a lot of guys with my 71 El Camino with a 355 sbc and “Quadrajunk” carb. Their bolt ons such as Holleys, glass packs and chrome valve covers were no match for someone with an uncle who was a drag racer in the 60’s and 70’s. He knew how to tune a q jet to make it FLY! I ran stock valve covers with double gaskets to clear full roller rockers, and a stock air cleaner with a snout from another air cleaner grafted and connected to ducts connecting under the bumper for fresh air. I did run headers and an edelbrock performer intake (painted orange to match the engine as it was easier to keep clean. “She was a fast machine. I kept her motor clean. She was the best damn motor that you’d ever seen” was my motto.


    One mistake, he used a 1972 Monte Carlo seat belt warning light dash…. He did use the correct fat front sway bar but left the 10 bolt rear instead of 12 bolt :)

  19. Gray Wolf

    Lose the wood!!

  20. Bill McCoskey

    I don’t know how many of you ever noticed, but ALL ’69/70 Chevelle wagons & ElCaminos with back-up lights, have a problem with the right side back up light; all of them are installed slightly rotated clockwise. You can see it in this one.

    About 20 years ago we were restoring one to concourse condition, and had a problem trying to line up the right & left lamps. No matter what we tried, the right lamp always sat crooked. We realized the hole was factory-punched like that. We checked 2 more tailgates, all had the same problem.

    We had to square up the lamp hole with the left hole to fix the problem. Now that’s what I call factory quality control! For 2 years GM didn’t fix the problem.

    Like 2
  21. Jubjub

    Nice wagon. Lose the stripes and that steering wheel. Get a set of black Polycasts and it’d be just about perfect.

    Was watching an early ‘70s movie a month or so ago. I really can’t remember what movie now, but in a traffic scene there was a very factory looking SS or GTO wagon that passed. I know, my poor recollection isn’t holding much water, but there supposedly were some in house “knew the right people” hot rod wagons built.

    Like 2
  22. Rob79Malibu

    I would love this car! The only problem I am seeing, the stripes do not align. Look at the top of the left and right front doors. also the left side of the tailgate. So if that was done in such a hurry, what else is hiding???????? That being said. I would drive the hell out of it! My wife would absolutely love this car. only problem being no power windows. But it has A/C so she could be ok. In fact, If I had one like this. She wouldn’t let me near it. It would become hers. You know. Whats hers is hers and whats mine is hers! LOL!

  23. Michael

    Wow! I am in love with this car!

  24. Dave Mc

    While we must “Concurs” it doesn’t look like the reserve is going to be met this time either.

  25. Steve R

    The previous auction never hit the reserve, nothing fell through.

    This car has been for sale at least a year, maybe two. It pops up on eBay a couple of times a year. The market doesn’t seem to think it’s as valuable as the owner.

    Steve R


    I knew someone had what was known as a California special. Chevy wagon (don’t) remember model, but came factory equipped with 350 4 speed and bucket seats. Almost bought it but had a 67 Chevelle SS 396, didn’t need two cars. Nothing wrong with q key when they worked right. Carter thermoquad bigger piece of junk.


    I knew someone had what was known as a California special. Chevy wagon (don’t) remember model, but came factory equipped with 350 4 speed and bucket seats. Almost bought it but had a 67 Chevelle SS 396, didn’t need two cars. Nothing wrong with q jet when they worked right. Carter thermoquad bigger piece of junk.

  28. Mark

    I think Steve R is right about no having a turbo 400

  29. Jon

    Growing up we had a 68 Chevelle Malibu wagon with the 307 V8 from day one to the end of it’s life as the engine wore out, the body rusted over time, and the drivers seat vinyl was tearing through. We got 122,000 miles out of it in 11 years of use. My parents still say it was the best car they’ve ever owned. The tailgate only opened down on the 68’s and the window was a crank which was actually convenient because you could leave the window unlocked (the crank had a lock on it), my Mom once locked her keys in the car and was able to open the back because they often kept the window crank unlocked unless somewhere not as safe as our hometown. The 68’s had the backup lights in the bumper which I think is a much better look than the 69-72 in door type. It yeilded for a more streamlined look and since ours was a Malibu, it had two long trim strips that were in line with the top and bottom of the brake lights and ran across the door. The Malibu was more luxurious than others with nice interior door panels and seats. I always like the 68 dash as well, very sporty, nice unique to 1968 twist and pull knobs matching for lights, wipers, and lighter and the dash mount ignition switch had a matching bezel. Square gauge clusters and the 68 steering wheel was very durable and unique to that year. My 2012 Chevy Equinox dash has a very similar design characteristics, ie. the twin square gauge clusters, V shape styling to steering wheel, etc. The resemblance is uncanny and I’m guessing since the Camaro had just recently come out in it’s “retro” styling, GM designers were taking this successful cue and adding it to the Malibu and Equinox’s. I’m thinking the dash in this wagon here is not original, or perhaps an upgrade? I do like the Monte Carlo dashes from this era with round gauges vs. the sweeping speedometer type, a my Aunt had a 71 Monte Carlo, but unsure this is original, and the steering wheel they have put on this car, is just not era appropriate, it should the the horizontal bar style with horn tabs on the ends, but often those didn’t hold up to the sun very well due to the plastic used for the center cover was early in the “plastics era” and I’m suspecting this is what led to the inappropriate replacement here. The 68 steering wheel centers were all metal which has held up and many still exist today in great condition.

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