We sell a whole lot of Tri-Five Chevys like this pretty 1955 Chevrolet Bel Air hardtop. Why? Because their classic looks never go out of style, they’re easy to modify, and typically run and drive like modern cars. Plus there’s the fact that a lot of folks grew up with fond memories of cars from the '50s. In fact, if I had to name the perfect hobby car, it might be something just like this bright red hardtop.
Chevy’s familiar Torch Red never goes out of style, and even though it’s a bit more modern than this 1955, it looks right, which is a tribute to the quality of the Chevy’s design. This car was treated to some high-quality work during its rejuvenation, but it respected the original design, so nothing radical happened to it. That means no chopping, no cutting, no shaving, but plenty of attention paid to things like gaps and finish quality. The doors fit well, the line around the trunk lid is even, and the brightly polished stainless side trim between the doors and quarter panels fits so exactly that it looks like one single piece. Getting a car to look like this also requires a sizable commitment to the chrome shop, and all the brightwork is in exceptionally good shape, particularly the California 1-piece bumpers that are so highly sought by builders today.
The interior was given a freshening at the same time, working hard to look period-correct and is so much the better for it. Comfortable red and tan upholstery looks like it came from a high-end late model car, yet looks right at home in the totally revamped ’55 Bel Air interior. More custom handiwork shows in the matching door panels, taut headliner, and neatly trimmed red carpets. Original gauges are framed by a custom steering wheel on a tilt steering column, and it respects the original look but adds a smaller rim to make it easier to get comfortable. You’ll also find auxiliary gauges tucked under the dash and if you look at the shifter detents, you’ll see four forward gears, not two or three. Vents for the A/C system were neatly installed out of sight and there's an AM/FM stereo system in the center. The nicely finished trunk offers a stock look, including a rubber mat and full-sized spare with jack assembly.
The engine is a 350 cubic inch Chevy V8 with a Holley carb and intake plus lots of chrome. Get your sunglasses, because this engine bay sparkles! Chrome in the usual places, some custom painted accessories, and an easy-access look make this a great highway cruiser. The real story is a little deeper, because you also get power steering, power front disc brakes, and a very contemporary feeling driving experience. The 350 is backed by a 700R4 4-speed automatic transmission, so it cruises effortlessly and the 10-bolt rear is rugged enough to eliminate breakage fears. Built for the road, the chassis is mostly satin black paint for easy maintenance and short-tube headers feed a custom Flowmaster exhaust system with chrome tips just under the rear bumper. Chevy Rally wheels look right wearing beefy redline radials all around, which give the car a bit of a muscle car look.
Just like all the others, this Bel Air won’t last long. Someone will quickly realize that this is as good as motoring gets, a no-compromises cruiser that does everything well. If that someone is you, call today!