Tuesday, October 20, 2009

1955 Chevrolet original owner


Bobby Wood remembers that he got married on the last day of April in 1955. Wood is also quick to point out that on May 26, 1955 he bought a new 1955 Chevrolet. “I’ve still got them both.” Wood says proudly. “I was in high cotton with a new bride and a new car within a month.” 54 years and a lifetime of family memories ride in this one-owner classic Chevy.


History
Wood’s Neptune Green with Shoreline Beige topped Chevy was purchased at Al Dement Chevrolet in Birmingham, Alabama. Wood knows every inch of his car and it’s history. “I paid $2,400 for it and the salesman’s name was J.D. Lyle.” Wood really wanted to buy a Ford and trade in his black 1948 Chevrolet Fleetline 2-door. The Ford salesmen let one get away that day.


Economy V8
Wood’s 1955 Chevrolet was originally equipped with a 265-cubic inch V8 engine with a 2 barrel carburetor and backed by a three-speed, column-shift transmission. A few years later, Wood’s wife Ailene bought a new 1961 Ford Falcon. The smaller, fuel efficient Falcon was no match for the thrifty ’55 Chevrolet. Wood says, “the Chevy got better mileage in town than the lightweight Falcon. Around 21 mpg.”


Long-term parking, restoration
In 1967 Wood parked the 12-year-old ’55 with plans of a restoration. 23 years later, in 1990, Wood’s 1955 Chevy hit the streets again. A 350-cubic-inch Chevy crate motor and a Saginaw 4-speed transmission combined to offer Wood more power to the wheels. Wood’s ’55 has relatively low miles despite more than five decades and two engine combinations. “The speedometer went  out at 97,000 miles and I’ve put less than 3,000 miles on it since then,’ Wood added.


Future plans
You don’t have to ask. I did. It’s not for sale. “I told my wife to bury me in the car when I go,” Wood says with a smile.