The Chevelle is one of America’s favorite classic muscle cars. If you turn on your favorite televised classic car auctions at random, chances are that there will be a Chevelle crossing the block. With so much attention, the Chevelle is pretty much an open book, yet here are some lesser-known facts:
- It was built in 10 different GM plants in two countries: Over the course of its 10-year lifespan, the Chevelle was assembled in a whopping 10 different GM plants. For the record, that was: Arlington, Texas; Atlanta, Ga.; Baltimore, Md.; Flint, Mich.; Framingham, Mass.; Fremont, Calif.; Kansas City, Kan.; Oshawa, On., Canada; and Sainte-Thérèse, PQ, Canada.
- It shared a platform with El Camino and Monte Carlo: In addition to being produced in convertible, two-door, four-door and station wagon body-styles, the Chevelle’s platform underpinned both the El Camino car/pickup and the personal luxury Monte Carlo.
- It’s gone but certainly not forgotten: The Chevelle nameplate died after the 1978 model year. And in spite of the fact that it is consistently named by auto journalists and bowtie fans as a name they would like Chevy to revive, it’s never come close to happening.
- There was a Canada-only version: GM and Ford formerly had a practice of creating specific models and nameplates for the Canadian market. There was a Canadian version of the Chevelle built in Quebec and Ontario called the Acadian Beaumont, which had a slightly different grille and trim. They’re rare and a very definite curiosity in the Chevelle world.
- Intended to be the successor to the famous Tri-Five 1955-57 Chevies: Designers saw the Chevelle as the spiritual successor to the 1955-57 Bel Air/210, noting that the 115-inch wheelbase was the same, and like the 55-57 Chevy, the Chevelle was offered in two-door coupe, four-door, convertible, and two- and four-door wagon body styles. It’s proven to be the case in the collector car world, too, as younger baby boomers and Gen-Xers opt for the Chevelle as the collectible Chevy of choice over the 55-57 Bel Air of the immediate post-war boomers.