Rides from the Readers: 1960 Chevrolet Bel Air

Hagerty readers and Hagerty Drivers Club members share their cherished collector and enthusiast vehicles with us via our contact email, tips@hagerty.com. So we’re showcasing some of our favorite stories among these submissions. To have your car featured, send complete photography and your story of ownership to us at the above email.

Today’s featured car is a 1960 Chevrolet Bel Air. Chevrolet’s fourth-generation Bel Air hailed the shift between two decades, from the era of Buddy Holly and saddle shoes to Bob Dylan and miniskirts. This generation of Bel Air first hit the roads in 1959, proudly sporting broad tail fins, cat-eye taillights, and a 119-inch wheelbase. (For comparison, a Honda Odyssey measures 118.1 inches axle-to-axle.)

The 1960 model year carried on much the same, but the Bel Air swapped the oblong taillights for double cones. A wide array of body styles was offered, from Sport Coupes to sedans, with a variety of V-8s available.

This particular four-door Bel Air, which belongs to Don West, is equipped with a 283-cubic-inch V-8 and a three-on-the-tree manual ’box. After restoring the car, West decided to take it a touch further while resurrecting ’60s nostalgia. Prompted by friends who joked about the car’s generously-sized trunk—specifically, how many friends you could sneak into a drive-in theater with it—he recreated a mini drive-in scene in it. A surrounding highway with a mountainous backdrop, mini trees, and people, a nearby Dairy Queen, and an iPad for a working movie screen … the model has it all.

drive-in movie theater staged in trunk of 1960 numbers matching chevrolet bel air
Don West

Have you ever gotten this creative with a restoration? Let us know!

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