But what about the Sport Coupe version, which is arguably the most popular iteration of the Bel Air? Well, Chevrolet delivered 189,269 units in 1955. The convertible, on the other hand, saw daylight in 42,278 examples. But even though all these classics are pretty common compared to the Nomad, finding one in unrestored and unmolested condition is becoming increasingly harder. That's because most Bel Airs were either restored, turned into restomods, or left to rot away in junkyards.
If you're looking for an amazingly original 1955 Bel Air convertible, I recently stumbled across the finest example I've seen in years. Here it is in all its Coral and Indian Ivory glory paired with a matching Coral and dark grey interior. And yes, you're not seeing things; the paint job is 68 years old as of 2023. Sure, it has weathered areas and other imperfections, but it looks tremendous for a finish applied almost seven decades ago.
The drop-top has obviously been pampered throughout its entire life and spent many years in dry storage, but exactly how original is it beyond the paint? Well, the owner says the body panels, the floors, the chrome work, the glass, and the drivetrain are all factory originals. However, the four-barrel 265-cubic-inch (4.3-liter) V8 and the two-sped automatic were recently rebuilt and used for only 700 miles (1,127 km) as of this writing.
The Bel Air also got a new stainless steel gas tank, which makes sense after so many years, new gauges, and recent radial tires. The owner claims the convertible has an optional padded dashboard, but it's probably an aftermarket upgrade. That's because Chevy did not offer such an option until 1956. Anyway, the Bel Air appears to be highly original, which is impressive even for an unmolested classic.
Speaking of extras, it's also a highly optioned car, featuring front and rear chrome bumper guards, door edge guards, door handle chrome guards, fender skirts, power steering, and rocker panel side chrome. The 180-horsepower 265 V8 engine is also optional, as the Bel Air came with a 235-cubic-inch (3.9-liter) inline-six as standard.
So how much for a 1955 Bel Air convertible in this condition? Well, the drop-top is being auctioned off from Templeton, Massachusetts, and 42 bidders have already sent the sticker north of $58,000. The reserve is still in place with five days to go. For reference, 1955 convertibles in Concours-ready condition retail from $90,000 to $100,000.