Thursday, June 25, 2009

1955 Chevrolet Bel Air 4-door Sedan

"Here's Chevrolet's new 'show car' styling at its beautiful best. The new Bel Air 4-Door Sedan looks as young as you feel behind the wheel! Wider and longer looking, and much, much lower - its crisp lines enhanced by tasteful chrome accents that distinguish the luxurious Bel Air models."

When Chevrolet introduced it's new generation of cars in late 1954, it was clear that the 1955 Chevy still was GM's budget offering - but certainly it didn't look like one.

The modern styling, created unter the supervision of Carl Renner, Chevrolet's Chief designer in Harley Earls "Art & Color Section", was clean and pretty tasteful. The simple, Ferrari-inspired front grille gave the Chevrolets an classy and almost european look. The relatively sparsely used chrome-trim cleverly stretched the horizontal appearance and made the Chevy look longer than it actually was, while the well-placed two-tone colors were best mid-50s fashion.

Then the engines: Chevrolet's first V8 engine since many years should become an instant hit. Developed in an incredibly short 15 weeks, it was light and zestful. Supported by the well-balanced suspension, this engine made the 1955 Chevy an very agile car for 50s standards. Customers rightfully nicknamed it the "Hot One", a term that eventually should be used in Chevrolet's own advertisement.

All in all, the 1955 Chevy was much more than just the sum of it's parts, and this should make it an iconic product and an huge commercial success: almost 1 out of 4 cars sold in 1955 was a Chevy!

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