VERY NICE AND ORIGINALLY RESTORED BEL AIR, MATADOR RED, EXCELLENT CHROME
Cars like this California-bred 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air hardtop remain popular year after year, and it's easy to understand why. They're handsome, comfortable, reliable cruisers that pluck at a lot of people's heart strings. This gorgeous '57 Bel Air exactly nails the original look and feel with a high-quality restoration that offers a few low-key upgrades to make it perhaps the ultimate cruise night vehicle.
Bodywork was well executed with tight gaps and signs of a substantial investment in time and effort to get the panels straight and ripple-free. If you're going to use the original Matador Red and attract all this attention, you'd better make sure the sheetmetal is straight, smooth, and well-aligned. This one actually fits together extremely well, with great gaps and doors that close like no car we've seen in the past 30 years. All the chrome has been re-plated, including the California-style 1-piece bumpers, and given the costs of such work these days, it probably accounts for a big chunk the restoration costs. All the stainless was straightened and polished, and if there are any reproduction trim pieces on the car, they're indistinguishable from original. The gold anodized Chevrolet emblems front and rear, as well as the distinctive quarter panel inserts are all in very good condition. This Chevy is ready to rock.
Inside, the lovely black and red interior is the perfect complement to the bright red bodywork. Workmanship on the restoration is first-rate, and the materials are exact duplicates of the original stuff. There are no wrinkles or misaligned seams, suggesting that someone took their time, and new foam underneath ensures your comfort. Like a lot of '57s that were built to enjoy instead of becoming static art, this one has an upgraded AM/FM/cassette radio in the dash, beautifully restored gauges that are all fully functional (plus auxiliary gauges under the dash), and a beautifully finished steering wheel whose simplicity is something to be admired. Red mats add just the right amount of flash to the well-executed interior and the trunk has been restored to the same high standards, with a correct rubber mat and a wide whitewall spare tire that has a suitably vintage look.
Power comes from a 283 cubic inch V8, which is fully detailed and nestled into a nicely restored engine bay. Obvious upgrades include the popular "Power Pack" option that featured a 4-barrel carburetor and dual exhaust, although this one now sports a modern Edelbrock 4-barrel under the factory air cleaner. Correct Chevy Orange paint has a nice period feel, and doesn't look super-shiny, which always makes a car seem over-restored. Little things like the factory power steering/generator unit, the single master cylinder, and even the wire hose clams all add an authentic look. The smart running V8 spins a 2-speed Powerglide automatic driving the original rear end. The frame wears correct satin black paint and the combination of detailed components, bright exhaust pipes, and shiny hardware gives it a very fresh look. The dual exhaust system has a healthy rumble, but isn't overpowering, and it rides on a set of recent 205/75/14 Coker whitewall radials mounted on the original wheels with spinner hubcaps.
Despite building record numbers of 1957 Chevys, they remain very much in demand today. This speaks to both their enduring appeal to buyers as well as their inherent quality. This one, with an easy-cruising V8 powertrain and a high-quality restoration represents a great opportunity to own an icon. Call today!
- AM/FM Radio
- Cassette Player
- Numbers Matching
- Power Steering
- Vinyl Interior
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