Under The Hood

Found: 1960 Impala with all of the Chevy go-fast goodies

Unmolested ’60 Impala packs the 335hp 348 with a four-speed, Posi

Long before the terms “pickers” and “flippers” were added to the American lexicon, there was Larry Fisette. For 63 years, the 75-year-old De Pere, Wis., gear head has bought and sold more than 1,000 vintage vehicles, the most famous being the highly publicized collection of 21 semi-trailers packed with muscle cars and parts that he found in his hometown. Of all his finds, Fisette’s most recent find tugs at his heart strings most.

“It’s the car I always wanted,” Fisette said of the 1960 Chevrolet Impala two-door hardtop he recently found. The car is a rarity, being powered by the factory with the hot, solid-lifter 335-hp Tri-Power 348-cid V-8 with three two-barrels, a four-speed manual transmission, Positraction rear end and not much else. And it looks like this archaeologist just dug it out of the deepest, darkest warehouse in North Dakota, where its second owner had parked it in the early 1980s.

What Fisette digs most about this ’60 Impala isn’t just its drivetrain — it’s that the car is untouched so he knows it was born with all of its performance goodies. This car’s only modification is the now-weathered under-dash Stewart-Warner gauges that monitor vitals under the hood — that’s it. Look on the carbs, there’s a factory tag. On top of the carburetors, there’s that garbage can lid-size air cleaner — not three individual chrome pots. Look on the rear end, there’s that Posi tag. Even the original spindly, “spaghetti handle” four-speeder shifter was spared replacement by a Hurst unit. It remains a true time capsule — just how it rolled off the Janesville, Wis., Chevrolet assembly plant, with a little patina tossed in for good measure.

Perhaps Fisette likes this find most of all because the Chevy dealer he worked for in 1960 talked him out of ordering the 335-hp and four-speed drivetrain, which he’s always regret.

Read about other great automotive finds in Lost and Found Volume 2

Fisette gave us a tour of his recently purchased Impala with the hottest drivetrain offered in a full-size Chevrolet for 1960. Check out the pictures:

This unrestored, 64,000-mile 1960 Chevrolet Impala packs the 335-hp 348, a four-speed and Positraction. It was never professionally raced, so it was never altered. But you can bet it was street-raced.

This unrestored, 64,000-mile 1960 Chevrolet Impala packs the 335-hp 348, a four-speed and Positraction. It was never professionally raced, so it was never altered. But you can bet it was street-raced in Utah, where the second owner found it in the early 1980s.

A rear view of the 1960 Impala with its trademark triple tail lamps on each side. When replacing the decades-old rubber, Fisette discovered the rear wheels were one inch wider than the front wheels, all of which appear to be original.

A rear view of the 1960 Impala with its trademark triple tail lamps on each side. When replacing the decades-old rubber, Fisette discovered the rear wheels were one inch wider than the front wheels, all of which appear to be original.

The interior is tattered but as original as the outside. The original owner added the Stewart-Warner under-dash gauges. Also note the original "spaghetti handle" four-speed shift handle.

The interior is tattered but as original as the outside. The original owner added the Stewart-Warner under-dash gauges. Also note the original “spaghetti handle” four-speed shift handle.

The emblem and V identify the 348-powered '60 Chevys.

The cross flags and V in the grille identify the 348-powered ’60 Chevys.

The engine number is T0614FH: the FH determines the 348 has 335 hp with solid lifters and a high-lift cam. Code also shows the engine was built  in Tonawanda, New York, on June 14.

The engine number is T0614FH: the FH determines the 348 has 335 hp with solid lifters and a high-lift cam. Code also shows the engine was built in Tonawanda, New York, on June 14. Note the vacuum tank for the secondary carburetors behind the driver’s side hood hinge.

Front of the 1960 Chevrolet and Corvair confidential price list. Note the dealer price is included, along with the retail price.

Front of the 1960 Chevrolet and Corvair confidential price list. Note the dealer price is included, along with the retail price. This price list was provided courtesy of OCW reader Frank Pietras.

This 1960 Chevrolet would have retailed at $

Back of the price list. The prices on the far left and far right panels show the dealer price at the right and the retail price at the left. This 1960 Chevrolet would have retailed at about $3487.70 = $2841 (retail Impala two-door hardtop) + $14.55 (wheel discs) + $188.30 (four-speed transmission) + $43.05 (Positraction differential) + $55.80 (manual radio) + $333 (Special Super Turbo-Thrust 335-hp V-8, not shown on this price list) + $12 (two rearview mirrors at $6 each, also not shown on this price list).

 

 

 

COMMENT