Friday, January 1, 2010

1959 Classic Chevrolet "Wings, Glass, And Chrome"

Never before has an automobile manufacturer made such sweeping changes two years in a row. The 1958 Chevrolet was a pleasing design with rounded corners.

While the 1959 Chevrolet was shaped lean, with crisp new contours and beautifully restrained accents. Designed for greater roominess and comfort, engineered for greater safety, economy, ease of handling and smoothness of ride.

The 1959 Chevrolet was the last design by the famous designer Harley Earl, who helped pioneer General Motor's styling and design studio.

1959 Chevrolet Belair Impala 4 Door Hard Top Sport Sedan
1959 Chevrolet Impala
4 Door Hard Top Sport Sedan

All New All Over Again indicated one 1959 Chevy ad. Nothing's New Like Chevy's New said another. However, what was new? Chevrolet's new Slimline Design was fresh, fine and fashionable. The Roomier Body by Fisher was sound, solid and stylish. Sweeping new overhead curved windshield and bigger windows made of safety plate glass. Full coil suspension further refined for a smoother and steadier ride. Easy ratio steering reduced wheel turning efforts. Magic Mirror finish kept its shine for up to three years. Safer stopping with bigger brakes and deeper drums. And then there were the engines!

Here is how Chevrolet changed the styling of the 1959 Chevy. The dual headlights, which in 1958 were mounted above the front grille and bumper, have been lowered quite a few inches and were placed at either end of the grille. Above the grille are narrow slits that look like air intakes, but are directional lights that have been tucked into the outside corners of these slits. One outstanding feature is the enormous area of glass, front and rear. The windshield curves way up and into the roof and provides tremendous visibility.

Out back the 1959 Chevy has a spread wing treatment and cat's eye taillights. The rear license plate swivels down to reveal the gas tank filler cap.

1959 Chevrolet Impala
1959 Chevrolet Impala

The new '59 Chevrolet, is nearly two inches longer and wider than the '58, has picked up almost 200 more pounds of weight in the body alone. With one of the big engines and transmissions and all the accessories including air conditioning it would be no trick at all to come up with a 1959 Chevy weighing well over 4,000 lbs.

1959 Chevrolet Impala Convertible
1959 Chevrolet Impala Convertible

The 1959 Chevy line up was in Chevrolet dealer showrooms in October 1958. Customers rushed in to see the 1959 Chevrolet Convertible. Production figures for 1959 included 525,461 four door sedans, 281,924 two door sedans, 188,623 four door station wagons, 20,760 two door station wagons, 182,520 sport sedans, 164,901 sport coupe and 72,765 convertibles. The Del Ray and Yeoman name was dropped in 1959. See many pictures of a 1959 Chevrolet on this website.

1959 Chevrolet Models
The Impala Series
Impala Convertible
Impala Sport Coupe 2 Door Hard Top
Impala Sport Sedan 4 Door Hard Top
Impala 4 Door Sedan

The 1959 Chevrolet Bel Air Series
Bel Air Sport Sedan 4 Door Hard Top
Bel Air 2 Door Sedan
Bel Air 4 Door Sedan

The 1959 Chevrolet Biscayne Series
Biscayne 2 Door Sedan
Biscayne 4 Door Sedan
Biscayne 2 Door Utility Sedan

1959 Chevrolet Station Wagons
Nomad 4 Door 6 Passenger
Kingswood 4 Door 9 Passenger
Parkwood 4 Door 6 Passenger
Brookwood 2 Door 6 Passenger
Brookwood 4 Door 6 Passenger

1950 Classic Chevrolet "Fleetline Special"

Fleetline Specials were considered six passenger cars. 1950 Chevrolet Fleetline Special 2 door and 4 door models were the bottom of the line along with the 1950 Styleline Specials. 2 Door Fleetline Specials sold for $1403.00. With the 1950 Chevrolet 4 door selling for $1450.00, almost $50.00 more than the 1950 Chevrolet 2 door. 1950 Styleline Specials were priced exactly the same.

The stainless side trim and "Deluxe" script found on the 1950 Chevy Deluxe models was noticeably missing on the cheaper Fleetline Specials along with the chrome gravel guards. 1950 Chevy Fleetline Special rear fender gravel guards were made of rubber.

Other exterior trim found only on the Deluxe models were stainless windshield and rear window reveal moldings. The moldings outlined the windshield and rear window glass and followed the top curve of the doors and quarter windows on sedans and coupes. Fleetline Specials did not rate fender skirts, another cost savings item.

1950 Chevrolet Fleetline Special 2 Door Sedan
1950 Chevy Fleetline Special 2 Door Sedan
1950 Chevrolet Fastback

The 1950 Chevy Fleetline Specials above and below without fender skirts, stainless trim around windows/doors and rubber rear fender gravel guards did not convey this advertising message.... "New Chevrolet features smarter styling, improved performance and a really sensational new driving development."

1950 Chevrolet Fleetline Special 4 Door Sedan
1950 Chevy Fleetline Special 4 Door Sedan
1950 Chevy Fastback

1950 Chevrolet Magazine Ad
1950 Chevy Car Magazine Ad

1950 Chevrolet Fastback magazine ad from the 1950s. Chevrolet Cheered in every quarter! It's got everything including Powerglide! A nickel goes a long way!

1950 Classic Chevrolet "Styleline Deluxe Convertible"

The introduction of the Bel Air two door hardtop marked a sea of change in how the Chevrolet Division defined sportiness. Until the advent of the hardtop, the serious sporting types went for the convertibles.

Every Detroit manufacturer, with rare exception, offered at least one convertible as the style leader of its line. However, automakers didn't really expect to sell a lot of convertibles and they usually didn't.

Convertibles set the style objectives but didn't do much for sales as only 32,810 units were sold by Chevrolet in 1950.

1950 Chevrolet Convertible
1950 Chevrolet Convertible

In 1948 the Chevrolet Division of General Motors sold 20,471 Convertibles out of a total production run of 422,320 cars for the year. In 1949, Chevrolet built 32,392 Convertibles with a total production of over 1 million Chevy cars. In 1950 Chevrolet made another million cars and the 1950 Bel Air Hard Top out sold the 1950 Convertible 2 to 1.

1950 Chevrolet Convertible
Restored 1950 Chevy Convertible

1950 Chevrolet Delux Convertible Video

Sponsor: Chevrolet Division, General Motors Corporation
Chevrolet travelogue ad, made for theatrical showing, promoting the 1950 Chevrolet Styleline Deluxe Convertible and tourism in Coral Gables, Florida. Shows colorful parrots, the University of Miami, and a visit to the beach.

1950 Classic Chevrolet "First and Finest at Lowest Cost!"

The 1950s saw more significant changes in the Chevrolet than had occurred in any previous decade since the 1920s & 1930s.

The big change really started on January 1, 1949. That's when the first truly new body design for Chevrolet was introduced since post World War II. Until 1949 all automobile manufacturers were still building and selling basically prewar cars and trucks, and selling all they could make.

One of the most striking changes in the 1949, 1950, 1951 and 1952 body designs was the noticeably lower hood in relation to the now much higher front fenders.

For the 1950 Chevrolet production year which started on January 7, 1950, only slight changes were made to the 1949 cars. Chevrolet took a sound product and refined it's appearance. Clearly looking for an upscale image for all it's new models.

1950 Chevrolet Styline Deluxe Belair 2 Door Hardtop
1950 Chevrolet Styline Deluxe Bel Air 2 Door Hardtop

Shown below is a 1949 Chevy Deluxe 4 Door Sedan and 1950 Chevy Deluxe 2 Door Sedan. Note the grille was changed in 1950 by eliminating the row of slim vertical bars in the lower part. Compared to the 1949 Chevrolet, enlarged were the round parking lights and the vertical piece beneath the parking light. The vertical piece was also decoratively trimmed with three chevrons. The front bumper guards were also changed on the 1950 Chevrolet model. On the 1949 trunk the T-shaped twist type trunk handle was replaced with a key operated fixed handled on the 1950 Chevrolet cars. Taillight lenses and housings were reshaped and now jutted out slightly.

1949 Chevrolet Deluxe 4 Door Sedan
1949 Chevrolet Deluxe 4 Door Sedan
The Most Beautiful Buy of All!
1950 Chevrolet Deluxe 2 Door Sedan
1950 Chevrolet Sedan
First...and Lowest Cost!

In 1949 a drab tan and brown interior was available on all Specials and Deluxe models. Chevrolet didn't make a very radical switch for the 1950 Chevy cars. They choose equally drab shades of light and dark gray. It wasn't until 1952 did Chevrolet offer some color choices. Image to right is a Deluxe interior, but it still looks plain by today's standards.

Chevrolet advertising for their new interiors claimed... Five-Foot Seats and Center Point Seating. Center Point Seating was new for 1949 and 1950. Instead of rear seats over the axle, they were repositioned forward making for a more smoother ride.

1950 Chevrolet Deluxe 2 Door Sedan
Typical 1950 Chevrolet Interiors
The same line up of body styles introduced in 1949 was again available in 1950. 1950 was a banner year for 1950 Chevrolet sales and all General Motors sales. There was very little foreign competition, the economy was booming and every General Motors automobile manufacturer had a new postwar car designs in their showrooms.

A popular magazine ad produced by the Chevrolet Motor Division stated... What a thrill awaits you and your family when you inspect the fourteen magnificent Chevrolet models for 1950. The 1950 Chevrolet cars that are First and Finest At Lowest Cost!

1959 Classic Chevrolet "Wings, Glass, And Chrome"

Most generators were only asked to power the headlights, heater and maybe an AM radio, and none of these demanded high amperage output at low speeds. But today's classic cars and trucks usually include air conditioning, fuel pumps, cooling fans and a thumper stereo. Using the original generator almost always results in battery discharge.
Ginger, our 1957 Chevy

This is a great reason to switch to an alternator given this increase demand. At this web site we describe the proper way to convert a 1957 Chevrolet’s electrical system from a DC generator to a 94-100 amp alternator capable of handling all the normal electrical needs plus an average stereo, cooling fans and any after market air conditioning system made today.

On Left "Ginger" our 57 Chevy!

You can also use this web site to trouble-shoot or double check work done by others on your classic car or truck. This is a fairly involved subject and you should read each page on this web site before making any purchases such as an alternator, battery or gauges. We also recommend that you read the article How Alternators Work. These instructions should work very well on any model 1957 Chevy as well as most GM cars and trucks of the 1950s and 1960s using a generator to recharge a battery. However, you will need a proper wiring diagram for other model years.

Feel free to copy and paste any instructions on our Alternator Conversion web page in "Note Pad" and then print.

A multimeter is the most important tool in your electrical drawer. Below is a multimeter that would be perfect for your shop and this project. Prices range from $10.00 to $30.00. Fluke makes one of the best meters and usually cost $100.00 to $200.00 or more depending on model. Y

A rugged multimeter is the perfect shop tool for any automotive diagnostic or troubleshooting need. Meters usually includes probe test leads, alligator clip test leads, installed 9V battery and instructions. Both of the meters above are ideal for automotive and household electrical testing. Function switch for voltage AC, DC and Ohms.

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