The 1955 Classic Chevrolet, now there’s a classic in the truest purest form. This incredible machine has been, and continues to this very day to be the best rated classic Chevrolet. Its story begun with the biggest surprise Edward Nichols Cole ever received. Chevrolet representatives came to his doorstep and told him to start designing for them a car from scratch. This happened in 1952. Three years later the ’55 Chevy was born.
Cole began the design with a new frame, new body parts completely redesigned, a front suspension, and redesigned rear springs and brakes. One of the first Chevrolet ads said “don’t mess wit this one”, stealing the thunder from priced cars, the 1955 Chevrolet was “the shiny new toy”.
When it was launched, fresh out of the assembly line, the ’55 Chevrolet changed history. Many still wonder to this day, how come it was so popular even now. It’s redesigned and upgraded 265 cubic inch engine with V8, was just fascinating. One of the most important features in the public’s eye. It also was completely unique and intriguing in its design, a completely new league of vehicles was born with it. Coming with a new upgrade known as the “turbo fire” V8, it was the most exciting car of it’s time.
With the developing of a new and wide tubular frame chassis and engineered drive train, it was something different than the usual Chevrolet design. Being 115 inch long, the ’55 Chevy it was about 18% lighter and 50% more stable than the previous Chevy cars. A modern ball joint was integrated in the front suspension called “Glide ride”. A-arms were acting upon coil springs that would activate around hydraulic shock dampers provided a very smooth ride even at high speed. The leaf springs were modified, extended 9 inch longer. They were also 2 inches wider and were now mounted upon the outboard of the frame. Considering the longer chassis, bigger 15 inch tubeless tires were used. Some other major changes were at the gearbox and steering box which now had a 20:1 ratio and 11 inch brake drums that made sure the car stopped no matter how fast it was going.
Since Chevrolet was the biggest seller, the styling was even more important in the people’s eyes than performance of motorization. It was at least a bit less radical and conspicuous than it was originally designed, now with a boxy look, looked a lot more sleek than the early models. Everybody was looking for longer and lower models, so General Motors provided that. They cut the height by 6 inches on station wagon models, and up to 3 inches to all the other models. It looked longer and a lot more wider, because of the modifications brought to the rear fenders and the hood. The tail lamps extended out of the upper rear fenders.
The interior was just about as flashy and as the exterior and bodywork. The instruments were arranged almost symmetrically and were arranged ahead of the steering wheel, in a pretty complex fan like cluster. One radio was positioned on the right side of the cluster, and another was mounted next to the fan clusters.
There were no less than 50 million Chevy cars produced by General Motors and a lot of them live to this very day cause. It’s considered as the best Classic Chevy ever created and no car enthusiast will tell you otherwise.
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