There’s really nothing like it – a relatively light car with a huge engine powering the rear wheels. This 1969 Chevrolet Nova with a 396 cubic inch big-block V8 is truly a thing of excitement. And, this Nova has it all.

I do understand it’s easy to add bigger engines to the basic Nova chassis, but I think the effort was well worth it. Don’t you?

Thrills and excitement – that’s what it’s all about.

That’s why I was intrigued by this (hopefully) authentic SS396 1969 Nova. Like most Chevrolet products, it’s extremely easy to substitute various engines without much headache. In fact, years ago, I traded a 250 cubic inch inline 6 cylinder got a hopped-up 350 cubic inch V8 in a 1968 Chevy pickup. It was all done without any major headache. The only real problem I had was some slight overheating which I cured with a shroud.

The Nova of this era was built like a Camaro or a Firebird – a big subframe connected to the cowl that held the engine and transmission. One of the major complaints was that this subframe attachment acted like a big hinge, adding some chassis flex at times.

Even though the Nova started as a replacement for the Corvair, it’s basic economy car goodness still lent itself to a light body/big engine hot rod, no matter the year.

 

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