1963 Chevrolet Chevy II
Following a highly satisfactory introductory year, the 1963 Chevrolet Chevy II saw plenty of enhancements.
Biggest news was the Nova Super Sport option, available on the Chevy II Sport Coupe and convertible. Following the pattern established with the 1962 Impala SS, the Nova SS included a special all-vinyl interior with front bucket seats, full instrumentation, 14-inch wheels with "SS" full wheel covers, and distinctive exterior trim, including a bright-finish rear cove panel.
The SS was a very appealing appearance package, especially on the convertible, giving Chevy another strong entry in the sporty-compact market segment it had created with the Corvair Monza.
The 1963 Chevrolet Chevy II Nova was a bit chromier, with wider full-length body side moldings, and all models received a new, bolder grille, amber front parking lamps, revised decklid ornamentation, and new interior fabrics. One model was deleted, the Nova two-door sedan.
Functional improvements included rust-resistant "flush-and-dry" rocker panels, self-adjusting brakes, and a new "Delcotron" alternator. Powertrain choices-including the Super-Thrift 90-bhp four and the Hi-Thrift 120-bhp six-were carried over.
The Chevrolet Chevy II had an excellent year in 1963: 375,626 units delivered for the model year, including 42,432 Super Sports. This was enough to disrupt the Falcon's flight plan as production slipped to 328,339 units.
However, word was getting around about the four-cylinder engine's shortcomings; only 3,800 were sold. Significantly, too, the competition wasn't standing still.
The Falcon was now available in hardtop and convertible models, and the 1963 1/2 Falcon Sprint featured a 260-cubic-inch V-8, enough to blow by any Nova, Super Sport or not (the V-8 was optional on all Falcons). Meanwhile, Chrysler completely restyled its Valiant/Dart compacts, and Consumer Reports gave these Mopar twins its top rating.
Noted Consumer Reports: "New last year, the Chevy II has not yet developed into a smooth-riding, quiet, or in any sense luxurious car. It is an easy driving, agile one. By far its most important asset is a body with substantially the room of intermediate cars, but with a very compact silhouette and especially good entrance height."
All through the spring of 1963, there was speculation that the Chevy II was going to be discontinued to make room for the upcoming mid-size Chevelle. That was, in fact, the original plan, but the high sales of the 1963 model gave Chevy II a reprieve.
Learn about the 1964 Chevrolet Chevy II on the next page.
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