I originally saw this beautiful 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air Sport Coupe at the GarageRiot.com “SummerRiot 2018” event and was struck by the beautiful lark-spur blue color and condition of this car. Ralph McFillen was nice enough to share it with me one late Fall afternoon. That afternoon I took my first ride in a ’57 Chevy and it was definitely memorable.
The first thing Ralph says to me when I get in, after I ask where the seat belts are, “No seatbelts. You’re in the danger seat too. I at least have the steering wheel to keep me from flying out of the car.” Seat belts were an option in 1957, although Chevrolet was the first manufacturer to offer them starting in 1956. Luckily we weren’t driving far. I couldn’t help but notice how small the car is inside. 57 Chevys have always looked very large to me from the outside. Maybe it’s the long fins and the tall front end of the car that deceived me, but the interior is actually much smaller than it seems.
This is the second time Ralph has owned a lark-spur blue 57 Chevy. The first he purchased in 1961 and later traded for a 1965 Pontiac LeMans. After retiring he decided it was time for another. In 2007 he finally found the exact color 57 Chevy that he traded in 1967, but this time was different and Ralph has been the proud owner ever since.
A true American icon the 57 Chevy was the last of what many have dubbed the “Tri-Five” Chevys. Many options were available in 1957, most leaning towards comfort and luxury, including air conditioning, power seats, power windows and some more interesting options like the “Autronic Eye” which was a dash mounted sensor that dimmed the cars headlights to oncoming traffic.
Many thanks to Ralph for sharing this beauty.