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1-of-70 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air Fuelie Looks Fantastic, Hides Just One Little Secret
The late ’50 witnessed several notable debuts in the Chevrolet lineup, including the introduction of the Impala in 1958 (first as the top-of-the-line Bel Air and then, only a year later, as a stand-alone series).

1-of-70 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air Fuelie Looks Fantastic, Hides Just One Little Secret

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But before the Impala came to be and therefore became Chevy’s new superstar, the Bel Air was the model everybody loved.

And in 1957, another star was born.

The 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air is arguably one of the most sought-after classic cars, but what makes it even more desirable is the fuel-injected engine that was introduced for this model year. It was the first time the GM brand offered a fuel-injected option on a car other than the Corvette, and needless to say, not a lot of Bel Airs powered by such units ended up seeing the daylight.

Only some 70 examples rolled off the assembly lines with a convertible body style, therefore becoming one of the rarest Bel Airs ever produced. And of course, given we’re talking about cars that were manufactured no more, no less than 65 years ago, not too many of them are still around, so finding a Fuelie in a mint condition today is much more difficult than you’d be tempted to believe.

However, the folks over at The Vault have recently listed online one of the few models still known to be in existence these days.

It’s pretty clear from the photos that were shared as part of the ad by the garage that this Bel Air is a collector’s dream. However, it comes with a little secret that could make some people, especially those who are looking for an all-original classic, walk away.

But first things first.

This convertible has already been restored approximately 20 years ago, so while it looks fantastic, it’s not a perfect 10. It still exhibits some small issues here and there, but the photos confirm the car needs nothing more than minor TLC.

Of course, this doesn’t make it less intriguing. The Bel Air still looks incredible for a car that’s so old, so the previous restoration was clearly a professional job.

In case you’re wondering if you’re getting the full package, well, you do. This Bel Air comes with everything that was available on the stock model, including the abundance of chrome and the 14-inch tubeless tires.

But of course, what many people are interested in is the engine. The Rochester Ramjet-powered unit is still there, and as you’d expect, given this is a collectible, it starts and runs like new. The continuous flow fuel-injected engine came with a displacement of 283 cubic inches (4.7 liters) and developed 250 horsepower. As said, only some 70 convertibles ended up rolling off the assembly lines with a fuel-injected engine in 1957.

Now, about the little secret that we told you about.

This Bel Air was born with the Onyx black finish, but during the restoration, the owner decided to give up on the original coolness and go for the current Matador Red. It doesn’t look bad, that’s for sure, but on the other hand, collectors who want nothing more than an entirely original Bel Air will probably walk away. If anything, the red and silver interior is still original, with no changes on this front.

The second part that’s no longer original and which somehow doesn’t seem to fit such a rare gem is the modern radio system that was installed during the restoration.

Aside from these debatable changes, this Bel Air continues to be a fantastic classic car, and as you’d expect, it’s also priced accordingly. The garage in charge of finding a new owner for the Chevy is willing to let it go for no more, no less than $126,000.

Editor's note: This article was not sponsored or supported by a third party.

 
 
 
 
 

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