1955 Chevrolet Bel Air 215.5 cu in (3.5L) I6 from North America

Summary:

Cheap, reliable, easy to maintain classic

Faults:

Front end ball bearings had to be replaced at 125.000 miles.

Heater switches didn't work.

Dashboard clock didn't work.

Fuel gauge never worked.

Front end broke tie-rod ends at 155.000 miles.

Valve lifters were worn out after 140.000 miles, because no oil could get up to the valve heads. Had to blow out oil lines.

Headliner was gone.

General Comments:

The car ran excellent and the 2-speed powerglide transmission was really a dream. It would actually do 80 mph on the highway!

Not particularly safe nor comfortable, but hey, it's a classic!

Very reliable, and tough as nails.

Started in any type of weather, and never left me stranded anywhere, even though the fuel gauge didn't work.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 5th December, 2010

10th Apr 2013, 07:14

The 55 Chev is a true classic that looks awesome!

10th Apr 2013, 09:23

"2-speed powerglide transmission was really a dream."

- The Powerglide was THE WORST automatic transmission ever made!!! You have to be kidding when you wrote that.

10th Apr 2013, 15:52

My family owns a 1955 Pontiac that has been in our family for 58 years now. Like its sibling, the Chevy, it is super cheap and easy to repair and keep running. It had a ring job at 150,000 miles, but the original 4-speed hydramatic transmission has never been touched. It is 100 percent original including the upholstery (which has been covered for 57 years).

Although now only used rarely (it has been used in period movies), it is still an incredible car. The older GM cars were a joy to own, and are so easy to fix and find parts for.

11th Apr 2013, 23:56

The worst ever made? The 2-speed Powerglide was in production from 1950-1973, was proven to be very durable, and was and still is today being used as a race transmission in many modified cars.

12th Apr 2013, 15:41

23:56 is right. Although not a really good performance transmission in lower-powered cars, the two-speed power glide was a very durable transmission, and is to this day very popular in high-powered dragsters.

1963 Chevrolet Bel Air 4dr post 150/210 327 ci from North America

Summary:

Old school is the best

Faults:

Bought car from private owner and started to restore.

Replaced engine and transmission, restored interior and bondo on exterior.

General Comments:

These old cars were built tough and made to last, no foreign nuts and bolts and no plastic on these. 100% American made.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 4th July, 2008

31st Oct 2008, 17:18

I have seen "foreign nuts" in these... usually behind the wheel!

21st Dec 2008, 20:59

Yeah I guess... you're right.

About those old cars. Everything is "mechanical" and simple. Those "mechanical" parts are FAR more reliable and CHEAPER and easier to diagnose than those stupid multi sensor computer, ECMs, etc (that are famous to fail) electronic parted cars on which those electronic parts cost more than the whole car to replace. Not to mention TODAY'S Chevys and Dodges, etc (I have a Dodge Caravan BTW) last about as long as those old cars! What's up with that! IE Dodge Intrepid 2.7 liter engines last less than 100k miles. And many of TODAY'S (I'm NOT saying all) Chevys last only 100k before they fall apart.

YOU WANT TO GO BACK TO THE GOOD OL DAYS of the past reliability??? You don't need to buy a 1957 Bel Air, you can buy a new Chevy. You'll remember those good ol days when your new 2008/2009 Chevrolet of today breaks before 100k! Or before 50k!!!

20th Nov 2010, 22:28

Uh huh. There's a reason that the odometers in those old cars only went to 99K miles: very few lasted long enough to reach that mileage.

21st Nov 2010, 11:19

And I have seen these with modern Vette engines, retro air conditioning, at cruises and car shows. I also see dual quad 409 Impala SS 4 speeds as well. I had a couple of these, and had small blocks; one was a convertible. I had a 4 speed blue with black interior with black power top. Nice car!

19th Jan 2011, 13:38

I'll gladly throw parts at my '55 Belair if they break.

2008/2009 Chevys will never be classics.