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Flashback Fridays – 1955 Chevrolet Bel Air

1955 Chevrolet Bel AirThe 1955 Chevrolet Bel Air is a classic car that offered car shoppers a variety of model options. It was manufactured in two-door and four-door body styles, and one could select a coupe, station wagon or sedan. The most popular in the day was the two-door version, which was lighter than the four-door and thus a big draw for gearheads looking for speed. The Chevy Bel Air is a cousin to the Cadillac Series 62 with both cars using a similar V8 engine.


Read a great feature from Chevy Classics Magazine on CRO Champion Rick Boutwell and his 1955 Chevy Bel Air.


Power Train

The Bel Air also was available in two engine styles: an inline-six engine (I6) or a V8. The I6 came in 215 cubic-inch and 235 cubic-inch options. For the V8, one could choose between a 265 cubic-inch or a 283 cubic-inch. Each of those engines could be married with a 3-speed manual transmission, 2-speed Powerglide or 3-speed Turboglide. The Powerglide was used by General Motors (GM) from 1950 to 1973, but it went through many improvements over the years. The early rendition of the Powerglide had some issues changing from low to high gear, but the problem was fixed by 1955. In that year, the revamped Powerglide was used in in over half of all GM vehicles. Speed-wise, the Bel Air could achieve zero to 60 mph in about 13 seconds using the top V8 engine. The V8 models were unable to run on regular gasoline and obtained only about 10 mpg.


Body Style

The Bel Air was one of the earliest hardtops and was known for its stunning looks and extra comfort. The vehicle wheelbase was 115 inches. This version of the Chevy was 196 inches long with a lot of chrome and beautiful curves designed to make the car seem even bigger. Fourteen solid color choices were available, but the two-tone color scheme was the most popular. There were 23 color combinations offered in two-tones with each set having white or beige as one of the standard colors. The inside of the Chevy was roomy, especially the 4-door wagon.



The original price range for the Bel Air was from $1,500 to $2,500. In its day, it was just as popular as a family vehicle as it was for speed seekers tearing it up on the drag strip.

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