January/February, 1999 Feature Car

Luis Caceres' 1970 Chevelle SS 396

Luis Caceres of Dahlgren, Virginia presents his 1970 Forest Green 1970 SS 396. Because of his military commitments, he had to wait 13 long years to get it, but judging by these pictures, it was worth the wait.

Once Luis returned to the United States, an intensive two month search landed him in Massachusetts to check out this original owner beauty. Featuring white stripes, a black vinyl top, and a black interior, Luis was very impressed with its condition and the owner’s maintenance records. Seems not only was he given all maintenance records dating back to 1970, but the lady recorded EACH fuel fill-up, noting date, mileage, amount purchased, price per gallon, location of gas station, octane reading, and oil, in a log book.

In addition to the maintenance records, Luis also has the original paper work, including the retail invoice, window sticker, build sheet, and GM of Canada proof of options form. The cowl tag of this Canadian built SS features the all important Z25 option code to the “SS Conversion”. “She was firm on her price of $8,000,” Luis tells us. She was sorry to see it go, but her bad health forced the sale. Before giving up ownership, she informed Luis of her hope he keeps it all stock, including its original color scheme.

Not wanting to go against her wish, Luis has done just that! The black interior is all original and features a rare combination of bucket seats, column shift, and no console. Other options include AM radio, power steering, Cowl Induction, and rear window defroster. This is in addition to the standard R.P.O. Z25 SS equipment. Luis added some sheepskin seat covers to protect the upholstery when he presses it for street duty and a mobile car phone to brag to his friends!

Luis drove the green Chevelle from Massachusetts to his home in Virginia and, in the process, discovered the car handled GREAT at 120 MPH and the Cowl Induction worked just fine. Now is that a thorough test drive or what!

It took Luis 10 months of hard work, but he completely detailed the engine compartment of his SS. With some help from his friends, they removed the original L34 engine and trans, removed 28 years of grease, reworked the heads, replaced some worn out parts, and reassembled everything. Luis was quite pleased with the results, given this his first attempt at detailing an engine compartment. Looking at these pictures, he has a lot to be pleased with! Future plans for the ‘70 include a Repaint in the original factory color scheme, just like the original owner requested.

Luis Caceres (#321)

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