(DISCLAIMER: I owned this car in the mid-80's. This is not a picture of the actual car! I found this one and the ones in it's album online. It's amazing how similar this one is to the real thing, though. MIne was in better shape, had Chevy Rally wheels instead of Cragar S/S, and had a custom sport stripe that I painted down the bottom of the doors and around the wheelwells.)
"Carlotta", or "Carly" as we called her, came along when we were expecting our third child. "Beauregard", our Ex-Police Unmarked '76 Buick LeSabre was running just fine but was real hard on gas - about 10 mpg. We decided we wanted a car that 1) wasn't as thirsty, 2) had an all-vinyl interior in case our oldest continued to get car sick on long drives, and 3) a station wagon would be convenient for the size of our family. This car came in to the used car lot where I was working at the time, and I worked a deal where I traded the LeSabre straight up for the wagon. The Buick had nearly 140,000 miles by that time and the Chevelle had just under 100,000. It's transmission had been rebuilt and it had all-new dual exhausts and air shocks within the year. The 4-barrel 400 ran like a top and idled nicely, with a nice bass rumble from those new duals. This is the only car I've owned that I've had down a dragstrip (Maple Grove), about a year after we bought her. How does 14.22 at 99mph sound? 0-60 of just about 5 flat? Not bad for a big ol' wagon that was driven daily and gave us nearly 20mpg highway!
This wagon was a great car... until my ex messed it up. Within two months of getting her license, she had managed to dent or otherwise mess up every panel except the hood, roof, hatch, and right front fender (... and a kid on a bike ran into that one while I was driving!). She tore the right quarter panel open by hooking it on the bumper of a parked pickup truck while pulling out of a parking space. She flattened the left one parallel parking on the left side of the one-way street we lived on at the time by running the length of it against a phone pole parking by the "Touch" system. She dented the back bumper backing into a light standard in a parking lot - HARD, tore the rub strip half off the front cap, and dropped the right rear wheel into a drainage culvert snapping the bottom of the shock clean off and bending the shock mount on the axle double! In just two months, she ruined what was a very special car - at least it was to me.
I deliver U.S. mail in this car. The summer sun in Texas makes cars a solar heat collector. I built this shade so my car would have a permanent portable carport.
400 cid Chevy small block
4-barrel Holley carb
Turbo 400 with shift kit (unknown torque converter)
Dual Exhaust with crossover
I'd guess the horsepower would have been in the 300-330 range from the car's weight and preformance, with enough torque to spin the 245-60R15's
0-60 - 6 seconds
1/4 mile - 14.66@92mph
Top Speed - something over an indicated 115 mph (I ran out of guts before the car did... )
No specifications listed.
4-Barrel 400 V-8 (A 2-barrel 350 was standard)
Turbo-Hydramatic 400 Automatic Transmission
Dual Sport Mirrors (Driver's side remote)
Chevelle SS Instrument Panel
No factory options listed.
“Made in the Shade” has no photo albums.
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