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Chevrolet Nova

1963 Chevrolet Chevy II and Nova

The 1963 Chevy Nova SS Sport Coupe, part of the 1963 Chevrolet Chevy II and Nova line.
This 1963 Chevrolet Nova Sport hardtop
wears newly available Super Sport trim.

The 1963 Chevrolet Chevy II and Nova continued to sell well in their second model year, giving Chevy the confidence to expand the line. If a Super Sport edition could prove successful on its big cars, Chevy reasoned, why not on the Chevrolet Chevy II and Nova?

Chevy introduced the SS option on this compact lineup, confining it to hardtop coupe or convertible body styles. Since both those body styles were offered only in uplevel Nova trim, that effectively limited the package to the six-cylinder Nova 400 models.

Chevy said the new Super Sport option promised to deliver "Nova 400 glamour with a sports car flourish." The $161 package required larger (14-inch) tires and included bucket seats, a four-gauge instrument cluster, finned wheel covers, silver-color rear cove, and Nova SS insignia. That was exciting, but not quite as hot as the V-8 engine available in Ford's rival Falcon.

The 1963 Chevrolet Chevy II and Nova got a mild restyling, included a bolder aluminum grille. Nova 400 models all carried the 120-horsepower, Hi-Thrift 194-cubic-inch six-cylinder engine. The Chevy II 300 and thrifty 100 series could have the 90-horsepower Super-Thrift four-cylinder. Beltline stripes and chromed rocker-panel moldings set the Nova 400 apart from its more modest mates.

New features included self-adjusting brakes and a Delcotron alternator. These Chevy compacts could be ordered with seatbelts, heavy-duty springs, Positraction rear axle, a grille guard -- even taxi equipment.

After one year in the marketplace, the brochure insisted, the unibodied Chevy II was "already stepping out from the crowd in popularity."

This would be the final year for a convertible body style, and 1963's ragtop was manually operated unless the buyer shelled out an extra $54 for a power top.

1963 Chevrolet Chevy II and Nova Facts

Weight range (lbs.)
Price range (new)
Number built
Chevy II 100
50,400 (approx.)
Chevy II 300
2,440-2,900$2,084-$2,57578,800 (approx.)
Chevy II Nova 400, I6
2,590-2,835$2,235-$2,494171,100 (approx.)

The 1963 Chevy II Nova 400 Station Wagon, part of the 1963 Chevrolet Chevy II and Nova line.
Nearly 60,000 Chevy II Nova 400 Station Wagons
were produced for 1963.

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