- Frame off restoration
- GM 385 Fast Burn V8
- 700R4 automatic transmission
- Strange 9" rear / 3.50 gears
- Billet Specialties 18" wheels
- Custom interior
We all know tricked out '55 Chevys are some of the most popular and in-demand collector cars on the planet. Two months ago we sold a pristine black Nomad (http://www.rkmotorscharlotte.com/sales/inventory/sold#!/1955-Chevrolet-Bel-Air-Nomad/132805) for $91K. At the end of last year we sold our Millennium Yellow Bel Air hardtop (http://www.rkmotorscharlotte.com/sales/inventory/sold#!/1955-Chevrolet-Bel-Air/132770) for a cool $75K. And in July of last year we sold this national award winning 210 (http://www.rkmotorscharlotte.com/sales/inventory/sold#!/1955-Chevrolet-210/132418) for $112K! That trio is just the latest in a string of custom '55s which have left our RK Motors Charlotte showroom almost as fast as they arrived. And if you're one of the many folks who waited just a little too long to pull the trigger on those cars, here's your chance at redemption! Combining a healthy dose of resto-mod attitude with one of the best Chevrolet designs ever produced, this irresistible gray and silver 1955 Bel Air custom is a 385 horsepower cruiser that puts a new spin on an old favorite. Best of all, you can have all of its traditional 'tri-five' Chevy personality AND upgraded mechanicals for less than half of what it costs to build your own car!
This badass Bel Air custom is a no-compromises build which combines everything great about classic Chevy design with modern technology that's more akin to a new Corvette. The car's transformation began at Chassis Made Xtreme in Summerville, South Carolina where it underwent a complete frame-off restoration; and finished at Taylor's Rod and Custom in Lumberton, North Carolina where it was given a healthy dose of resto-mod attitude. During that frame-off restoration, high quality bodywork ensured the car's body panels mirror their rock solid factory appearance and display precise fit and finish which rivals the best modern cars on the market. And a killer combination of Charcoal Gray and Bright Silver urethane, which comes complete with a glossy clearcoat shell, was sprayed to exactly duplicate its timid, original two-tone exterior. The result is one rockin' 'tri-five' hot rod which looks absolutely stunning and is sure to elicit double takes wherever it goes.
The '55 is certainly the cleanest of the 'tri-five' Chevys with its minimal trim and crisp, retro styling devoid of the massive chrome and exaggerated proportions which typically characterize 50s era steel. At the front of the car, a trademark body-width Bel Air bumper rides below a pristine chrome grille, clear parking lights and correct T3 headlights; and a factory fresh Chevrolet crest rides below a centered chrome 'airplane' ornament which looks fantastic against the rolled silver hood. At the top of the car, smoked glass is flanked by fresh stainless wipers, good looking stainless trim, show worthy chrome mirrors and traditional Bel Air door frames. And at the sides of the car, deluxe Bel Air front fender spears combine with dent-free stainless rocker trim, chrome, stainless backed door handles, traditional “Bel Air” fender scripts and marbled 'tri-five' quarter panel spears to add detail to the car's pristine gray and silver paint. At the back of the car, a second body-width chrome bumper hangs over trick stainless exhaust tips that are embossed with monochromatic Bel Air insignias; and clear, chrome trimmed tail lights ride between a second, pristine Chevrolet crest and small, chrome Chevrolet emblems.
Take a peek under this Bel Air's smooth silver hood and you'll find a fresh GM Performance Parts Fast Burn 385 crate motor which is framed by gloss black inner fenders, a gloss black firewall and a polished radiator assembly. Straight from GM, this killer package combines a ZZ4 short block and camshaft with a forged steel crank, forged powdered connecting rods, aluminum pistons and aluminum fast burn cylinder heads to turn a stout 9.6 to 1 compression ratio into an even 385 horsepower and 385 lb./ft. of unmatched throttle response. At the top of that hot engine a large chrome air cleaner, which is secured by a cool bowtie spinner, passes air from a re-usable filter element to a chrome Weber 4-barrel carburetor that's complete with a braided fuel line and a chrome inline filter. Below that carburetor, a dual plane GM Performance Parts aluminum intake pushes a perfect air/fuel mixture into cylinders that are sparked by a traditional HEI distributor and black Accel Hi-Temp plug wires. And ceramic coated long tube headers send spent gases barreling into a great sounding true dual exhaust system. Cooling for the engine's big time combustion is supplied by a polished aluminum radiator which is equipped with two quick spinning electric puller fans, a billet overflow tank and chrome flex hoses. And charging is supplied by fresh V-belts which spin a chrome Powermaster alternator, an upfitted power steering pump and a polished AC compressor via a full set of chrome pulleys. Aesthetically, this Bel Air's glossy engine compartment combines with the 385's thick coat of black high temp paint to provide a clean, monochromatic look which oozes custom appeal. And niceties such as chrome, bowtie branded valve covers, a chrome battery box, a full set of braided hoses and chrome brake hardware add just the right amount of flash and detail.
Like its engine bay and exterior panels, the bottom of this road ready Bel Air continues to build on the theme of pairing proven hardware with enhanced technology. Behind the engine, a smooth shifting Turbo-Hydramatic 700R4 sends power to a Strange Ford 9 inch rear end which is equipped with highway friendly 3.50 gears and Strange 31 spline axles. Turns come courtesy of a modern power rack and pinion steering system which gives the car quick reflexes and excellent maneuverability. Stops are provided by Aerospace four wheel power disc brakes that are both quick and precise. And a fresh, wrinkle bent true dual exhaust system sends spent gases through great sounding dual chamber Flowmaster mufflers and stainless, Bel Air branded tips. The cars satin black frame and floorpan complement a rebuilt 'glide ride' ball-joint suspension which benefits from front drop spindles, high quality front lowering springs and Monroe Gas Matic shocks. And fully sorted details like a fresh driveshaft, a fresh stainless fuel tank and a full set of stainless hardware ensure that this classic Chevy will provide years of carefree cruising. All that reliable hardware rides on a sweet set of 18 inch polished aluminum Billet Specialties wheels which spin 225/40 front and 255/45 rear Nitto Extreme Performance radials.
Inside the car, traditional Bel Air style has been augmented by a high level of customization and a close attention to detail. Stitched and assembled by Jerry Hobgood of Spring Hope, North Carolina, the custom front and rear bucket seats are all-day comfortable and feature leather that fits without any significant wrinkles or annoying creases. Overhead there's a pliable leather headliner that's propped up by traditional chrome Bel Air roof bows and a chrome rearview mirror; and below, like-new gray carpet rides under color-keyed floor mats and chrome trimmed foot pedals. At the front of the seats the car's bright silver dash, which features pristine bowtie stamped stainless trim from door to door, hangs a traditional passenger's side Bel Air clock and speaker combo opposite controls for the cars Vintage Air climate system and modern, color-keyed Classic Instruments gauges. At the sides of the seats, custom leather door panels look great behind correct chrome handles, bright chrome door toppers and custom stainless trim. And between the seats, a custom, leather wrapped console props a JVC CD player in front of two cup holders, a padded armrest and what appears to be a Lokar shifter. In front of the driver, a polished Budnik steering wheel sits on a chrome Ididit tilt steering column that is complete with a full set of billet stalks. And behind the cockpit, a custom leather package tray hangs over a custom upholstered trunk that's big enough to hold supplies for a cross country road trip.
The sale of this awesome Bel Air includes a small stack of documentation which is comprised of restoration receipts, paperwork for the car's various components and a few glamour shots.
What started out as America's first low-priced hardtop coupe has become a legend; and the 1955 Bel Air is one of the most collectable, highly-sought classic cars of all time. Sure, there are a lot of nice 'tri-five' Chevys out there, but how many are built to this level and carry this kind of individual appeal? If you've been looking for an exceptionally nice, custom Bel Air that has twice the street credibility of an original car for a fraction of the price, this '55 hardtop's combination of performance and style simply can't be beat!
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What Customers Are Saying
After hearing good things about the people at RK Motors, I contacted them regarding consignment of my street rod. I found Tony Klein to be a pleasure to work with. He was very professional and forthcoming in our communications. He evaluated my vehicle and made suggestions of enhancements which would help ensure the desired result would be achieved in the marketing of the vehicle. We agreed on an acceptable sale price. Following the completion of the recommended items, I brought the vehicle to RK for consignment. After a thorough inspection and correction of some minor issues at what I considered a fair price, the vehicle was offered for sale. It sold quickly with me receiving the agreed value. I would have to repeat the recommendation that I received. RK Motors does what they say they will do, and obtains for the seller a fair and agreed value. What more could you ask for?Doug C.