Chevrolet Chevelle SS 454 Convertible

Chevrolet’s second-generation “Mk IV” big block engine debuted in mid-1965. In sales terminology, it was called the “Turbo Jet,” and appeared in 396 cubic inch form in the Corvette and Chevelle. Over the years, the 396 ranged from 240 to 425 brake horsepower and was used in Camaro, Nova, Monte Carlo, and full-size Chevy models, as well as in trucks. In 1970, a bored-out version with 402 cubic inch displacement was created, but sold as a 396 in smaller series and the “Turbo Jet 400” in full-size models. Only pickup trucks, oddly, correctly called it a “402.”

The 427-cubic inch Mark IV was introduced in 1966, as a production engine for full-size Chevys and Corvettes. Its heyday lasted until 1972, during which time it was offered in 390 to 435 brake horsepower guise, but it lived on until 1995 as a truck engine. From 1988, it had throttle body fuel injection. 

For 1970, the Mark IV was stroked to four inches, for 454 cubic inches. The Corvette and full-size Caprice each received versions, as well as the new G-body Monte Carlo. It was also used in El Camino pickups and the equivalent GMC model, the Sprint.

In mid-1970, RPO Z15, an SS454 package, was released for Chevelles. The engine was an LS5 version with 360 brake horsepower. Other SS equipment included bright engine accents, dual exhaust, a black grille, wheel cutout moldings, power front disc brakes, special rear suspension, a “power bulge” hood, 14x7 Sport wheels with F70-14 white letter tires, and a heavy duty battery. Transmission choices were limited to a four-speed manual or a Turbo Hydra-Matic.

360 bhp, 454.2 cu. in. OHV V-8 engine, four-speed manual transmission, coil spring independent front suspension, live rear axle with trailing arm coil spring suspension, and disc-front, drum-rear power hydraulic brakes. Wheelbase: 112.0 in.

Part of the RM Auctions event for John Staluppi in December, 2012.

Source: RM Auctions
Photo Credit: Teddy Pieper

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