’70 Chevelle SS 396 Uncovered After Sitting For 46 Years – Sole Champagne Gold L78 in Existence


Describing any vintage car as the ultimate discovery hidden in a barn is quite a daring statement. To qualify for such a title, the vehicle must possess extraordinary qualities. This 1970 Chevelle SS 396, according to its owner, meets that criteria, so let’s carefully examine it to determine if the claim holds true.

Gazing at this Champagne Gold Chevelle, it’s truly remarkable to think that its fate was sealed by a minor incident early in its lifespan. The original owner used the car until 1974 when a small mishap occurred. He accidentally collided with a street sign, resulting in minor damage to the driver’s side rear quarter panel.

One would assume that repairing such damage would have been a simple task, as evidenced by the traces of Bondo visible in the initial photograph. However, this was the extent of the owner’s efforts. Following this repair attempt, the Chevelle remained untouched and has been idle for the past 46 years due to this minor cosmetic damage.

Although the storage conditions seem fairly favorable, they are not flawless. As observed, the underside of the Chevelle bears a significant layer of surface corrosion. Fortunately, rust has not managed to breach the steel, indicating that the floors and frame remain structurally sound.

This Chevelle boasts matching numbers, making it an attractive find for Chevelle enthusiasts. Under the hood, you’ll discover a 396 cubic-inch V8 engine, an M21 close-ratio 4-speed transmission, a Posi rear end, and power front disc brakes. But this is not just any 396; it is one of only 2,144 Chevelles equipped with the 375hp L78 engine.

Examining the interior of the Chevelle reveals a mix of positive and negative aspects. The seats, door trims, dashboard, and console appear to require nothing more than a thorough cleaning. Unfortunately, the carpet had to be removed by the current owner due to a rodent infestation. However, apart from the console and bucket seats, the Chevelle comes with an AM radio featuring the optional rear speaker.

So, can we truly claim that this 1970 Chevelle SS 396 is the ultimate barn find? Making such a declaration is quite significant. It is undoubtedly one of the 24,567 Chevelles finished in Champagne Gold, and one of just 2,144 equipped with the L78 engine.

The owner suggests that this might be the sole Champagne Gold L78 in existence, and although it remains a possibility, confirming it would require thorough investigation.






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