1970 Chevrolet ChevelleSS 454 LS6 Convertible
Year of manufacture1970
To be OFFERED AT AUCTION at Auctions America’s Fort Lauderdale event, April 1-3, 2016.
$200,000 - $250,000 US
Attractive styling, extensive options and sheer value-for-the-dollar made the Chevrolet Chevelle an immediate success when introduced in 1964. Powered initially by various inline-sixes and small-block V-8 engines; it was soon realized by performance enthusiasts that the Chevelle could easily house the new Mark IV big-block engine that debuted in 1965. Starting with that year’s limited-production Z16 option and all-out racing versions campaigned by famed drivers such as Dick Harrell, Malcolm Durham and numerous Chevy stalwarts of the era, the Chevelle established a formidable straight-line reputation.
As the decade came to a close, Chevrolet faced serious competition in the NHRA Super-Stock division from the factory-backed Cobra-Jet Mustang and Hemi-powered Chrysler products that dominated the winners circle. Chevrolet finally released the limited-production 427-cid powered COPO Camaro and Chevelle models, racing with great success in 1969. The 1970 model year saw the end of the GM corporate directive prohibiting engines displacing more than 400 cubic inches being placed in its intermediate models, which included the Chevelle. In turn, the Chevrolet big-block was enlarged to a massive 454 cubic inches and became the foundation of the RPO LS6 package that was intended to seize control of Super-Stock drag racing from Chrysler. While the LS6 was never officially advertised by Chevrolet as an option for the Chevelle, certain Chevy dealers could help their customers obtain this pinnacle of Chevrolet muscle and many relied on them to do so.
The redesigned 1970 Chevelle SS, with its sturdy body-on-frame construction and 112-inch wheelbase, was the ideal platform for the LS6 engine; that was underrated by Chevrolet at 450-hp and 500 foot-pounds of torque. With its 11:25:1 compression, big-valve cylinder heads, 780-cfm Holley carburetor and radical solid-lifter camshaft, the new 454-cid engine was supported by a stout four-bolt main block and a forged reciprocating assembly and was backed by either an M22 “Rock Crusher” four-speed manual transmission or a M40 Turbo-Hydramatic 400. Hot Rod magazine summed up the car in its road test title, appropriately named “Earth Mover”. Another noted automotive journalist said of the LS6, "Driving (one) is like being the guy who's in charge of triggering atom bomb tests. You have the power, you know you have the power, and you know that if you use that power, bad things may happen." This car puts that staggering power in your control.
Confirmed by two original build sheets found during restoration, this fantastic example was produced at the Baltimore, Maryland Chevrolet plant and delivered to Comb’s Chevrolet, Inc. in Lima, Ohio. The car has undergone a complete, nut-and-bolt restoration by Brent Jarvis of Performance Restorations. It has been shown at the respected Meadow Brook Concours d'Elegance and remains in exceptional condition. The Chevelle convertible bodywork is arrow straight; the paint and brightwork are excellent; and the engine compartment, interior and undercarriage are like new.
The exterior is complemented by hood and deck striping finished in black, as well as black interior with front buckets and a black convertible top. In addition to the LS6 engine, this iconic machine is well equipped with power brakes, steering, windows and a power-operated convertible top, plus an AM/FM radio. The interior features a center console with a shifter for the Turbo-HydraMatic 400 automatic transmission, while other notable features include the F-41 performance suspension, front disc-brakes, a 3.31:1 Posi-traction rear axle, Cowl Induction hood and period-correct Goodyear bias-ply tires. Depending on rear end gearing selected, the LS6 Chevelle was capable of easy 13-second quarter-mile times and trap speeds of over 105 miles per hour, with traction severely limited by their original bias-ply tires.
Ultimately, Chevrolet produced 4,475 LS6-powered vehicles for the 1970 model year, including Malibu hardtops, convertibles and the Chevelle-based El Camino. Although Chevrolet did record total production for each model line, as well as RPO totals and big-block engine production, it did not break down LS6 production by each specific model in which the engine was offered. As a result, LS6 Convertible production is generally estimated at 18 cars. This LS6 Chevelle convertible is believed to be the only Cranberry Red over black ’70 LS6 ever built.
This Chevelle is offered complete with its original build sheet, Protect-O-Plate and owner’s manual. With its high-quality restoration, conscientious ownership, original documentation and many options; this LS6 Chevelle Convertible is one of the rarest and most desirable American musclecars of all time and is fittingly presented as such. This is undoubtedly one of the finest LS6 convertibles that one could possibly hope to find.
1970 Chevrolet Chevelle SS 454 LS6 Convertible