1955 Chevrolet Light-Duty Truck Interior
Seat cushions and backrests in the standard 1955 Chevrolet light-duty truck interior were done up in plastic and rayon fabrics with an oak-bark texture. Seat springs were standard, with foam padding optional. Black vinyl seat facings contrasted with the beige trim, black and beige being the only available colors inside standard cabs.
There were no armrests in the standard interior, and the inner door panels contained a ribbed embossment in the beige sheetmetal, with a corrugated metal section below that. The corrugation added strength and prevented drumming. Floormats were black rubber. The head-liner consisted of a waffle-pattern black vinyl material in a beige sheetmetal "halo." Noticeably absent from the instrument panel was provision for a radio speaker. Pickups with optional radios had their speakers in the header bar above the windshield.
The custom cab was not a whole lot fancier than the standard one. Seats were upholstered in a dotted nylon-and-vinyl fabric, this time in brown and beige. Custom cab seats got foam cushioning. The headliner and rubber floormats were beige instead of black. The door-panel insert was done up in a textured brown paint.
The Cameo Carrier interior went the custom cab one better. Cushions and backrests were upholstered in a red, nylon-faced pattern cloth, with contrasting beige vinyl on the sides of the backrest and seat bottom. The door trim panel was covered with the same red fabric as the cushion, but again you got an armrest on the driver's side only.
Unique to the Cameo was textured, low-gloss red paint on the top surface of the instrument panel and windshield garnish molding. The lower portion was painted beige, as were the door panels, garnish moldings, rear and roof halo. The headliner used a waffle-pattern red vinyl, the Cameo's floormats were red rubber, and the steering column, wheel, and hub were painted Commercial Red.
All the new trucks used the same instrument panel. Designer Drew Hare based the cheese-wedge shape of the gauge cluster on the similar design of the 1955 passenger car which, in turn, was based on the 1953-1955 Corvette. But the custom dash sported chromed knobs, twin sun visors, a cigarette lighter, plus an armrest on the driver's door. The engine starter for the six was a round pedal above the accelerator, and models with manual transmissions still used a hand choke.
There was an armload of options to jazz up the 1955s. One popular item was the chrome package, which added brightwork to the otherwise painted grille and headlamp bezels. Chromed bumpers constituted another option, as did the accessory hood ornament, backup lamps, shields for the fuel filler and door handles, and door-edge guards.
A special grille guard consisted of a welded network of heavy-gauge spring steel strips finished in Bombay Ivory. A custom package for panel trucks added bright metal window trim and some of the niceties of the custom pickup interior.
Exterior paint choices consisted of 13 solid colors or as many harmonizing two-tones. (Suburbans were restricted to single colors, though.) All two-tone schemes except those using Russet Brown had Bombay Ivory as the second color; Russet paired with Sand Beige. Trucks in solid colors used black wheels, while those with two-tones came with wheels in the accent color. The Cameo borrowed wheel covers from the 1955 Bel Air series.
Inside, Chevrolet offered two heaters for 1955, a standard unit with a two-speed fan and defroster, and a high-capacity recirculating heater with a variable-speed blower. You could also buy an optional parking-brake warning flasher.
Follow the Chevrolet light-duty truck story into 1956 on the next page.For more information on cars, see: