The Chevrolet Chevelle, which debuted in 1963 as a rival to the fourth-generation Ford Fairlane, shrank into a full-fledged muscle vehicle in the latter part of the 1960s. When Chevy produced the famed SS 454 LS6 in 1970, the nameplate’s performance peaked.
Driven by a powerful 7.4-liter (454 cubic inch) V8 engine with 450 horsepower and an incredible 678 pound-feet (678 N⋅m) of torque, this one-year wonder was more powerful than Mopar’s HEMI-powered vehicles and Ford’s Cobra Jet Mustangs. Moreover, only roughly 3,300 Chevelles with the LS6 engine were purchased because insurance costs for high-performance vehicles were on the rise. It’s also somewhat uncommon.
But it’s not the rarest Chevelle built that year. The car you’re looking at is even rarer because it’s one of only 12 SS 396 SC Tricentennial Edition examples known to exist. What’s an SC Tricentennial Edition you ask? Well, Chevrolet produced a limited-edition Chevelle to commemorate the 300th anniversary of the founding of Charlestown, South Carolina in 1970.
Yes, celebrating with a car is a bit weird, but the Tricentennial Edition is real, and 12 of the unknown number of units made are known to still exist, according to Joseph Bertrand’s 1970 South Carolina Tricentennial Chevelle Registry. One of these is the one on display here, which is being auctioned by MS Classic Cars.
What is unique about this anniversary edition? Not much, but the Palmetto Tree insignia on the fenders, the Special Gold paint job, and the matching wheels are enough to distinguish it from other 1970 Chevelles.
And this example here is that much more special since it’s a brilliantly restored car with a white vinyl top and a Parchment interior.
I don’t know about you, but I love Parchment interiors, especially if they also come with a bench front seat, like in this Chevelle. I’m even tempted to say that I like it more than the turquoise upholstery that Chevrolet offered in the Tri-Five and the Impala before the Chevelle came around.
Color preferences aside, this coupe is downright gorgeous from every angle. The subdued gold paint shines like new, as do all the chrome elements on the body and the wheels. The interior is perfect from the dashboard to the rear seats and features options like air conditioning, AM radio, a glove box lamp, and a rear speaker.
Speaking of extras, the vinyl roof is also an option, as are the tinted glass, the power steering, and the front bumper guards. The spec sheet also lists extras like a special performance suspension, power disc brakes, and the 3.31:1 rear axle ratio.
What’s under the hood? Well, this Chevelle is not a very desirable 454 LS6 car, but it packs a peppy 402-cubic-inch (6.6-liter) Turbo-Jet V8.
With a 350 horsepower rating, it has the ability to finish the quarter-mile in roughly 15 seconds for the Chevelle. The engine compartment exhibits a remarkable level of detail, and the expertly rebuilt V8 motor functions well. All in all, the car appears to have just left the Chevrolet factory more than 50 years ago, despite having five owners up until 2022. Speaking of owners, this vehicle was first delivered to a dealer in Honea, South Carolina, but was later transferred to a Greer showroom for a personalized delivery.
Its original owner owned it for thirty years. In 2008, the third owner completed the restoration in Georgia.
Check out this gorgeous 1970 Chevelle in the video below.