1970 Chevrolet Chevelle Pilot prototype to appear at auction
The sole known surviving Pilot Prototype 1970 Chevrolet Chevelle Coupé has been restored and is coming up for auction at Russo and Steele's Scottsdale 2019 sale
This 1970 Chevrolet Chevelle SS 396 has forever been scrutinised for its credentials. A Cranberry Red Coupe that’s enjoyed various moments in the spotlight, the vehicle’s factory history has always been called in question – until now.
Documented by Pilot Car Registry, this is the only known surviving Pilot prototype Coupe as of 2018. Believed by PCR to be an engineering test car, the 1970 Chevelle was delivered to Ver Hoven Chevrolet after evaluation in Detroit and boasts documented ownership spanning nearly four decades.
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For those with a penchant for automotive Americana, any Pilot car designates a pre-production vehicle showcasing a substantial amount of hand-made assembly parts. Sadly, most Pilot cars ended up scrapped – but this one survived. Heading to auction with Russo and Steele during its Scottsdale 2019 sale, the pre-production Pilot prototype is presented in highly desirable SS 396 configuration.
Better yet, the vehicle has been restored with stringent protocol. Not that the owner bought the Chevy as a renovation project, rather it was purchased to enjoy. However, the custodian realised the potential significance of the Chevelle and set about preserving not just the car itself, but also all the parts.
Reusing all the restorable components possible, anything that was surplus to requirements was also restored and will be sold alongside the Chevelle.
The authentication process began with four hours of extensive inspection by the PCR team, locating carry-over and prototype sheet metal stamped with ‘Pilot’ and ‘Advanced’ under the paintwork. The interior components also trumpeted unmolested VIN and trim tags matching internal archive documents already acquired by PCR.
As such, although they claim the ‘end use evaluation process can not be ascertained at this time’, it is the PCR’s professional opinion that this particular example was utilised as an Engineering Test Prototype before being installed with a drivetrain capable of being warrantied, as an arranged deal through a participating dealer.
Formally recognised as one of the single most historically significant surviving examples of the Chevrolet Chevelle, F100042 is the only known Chevelle Pilot Prototype configured as a coupe.
Get a closer look at the unique auction lot here.
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