Junkyard Find: 1977 Chevrolet Nova Coupe

Murilee Martin
by Murilee Martin
junkyard find 1977 chevrolet nova coupe

The fourth-generation Chevrolet Nova sold in huge numbers, wasn’t a bad car by the standards of its time, and stayed on the street in significant quantities well into the 1990s. However, the Malaise Era Nova just never gathered much of an enthusiast following compared to its predecessors— if you want to restore a Nova these days, you’ll get a ’64 or ’70, not a ’78— so the few remaining survivors go right to the scrapper when they die. Here’s a very worn-out example that I saw in California last week.

I’m quite familiar with this generation of Nova, having owned a $50 beater as an extra car in the early 1990s.

Mine had the 250-cubic-inch L6, just like this one. It was slow and plasticky and the ride was nowhere near luxurious, but it worked every time I wanted it to.

This one had factory air conditioning. Turning on the AC on the highway probably felt similar to hitting the parking brake.

Someone grabbed the interior, perhaps for a Seville.

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3 of 101 comments
  • Bickel84 Bickel84 on Dec 03, 2014

    My mom's first brand new car she ever bought was a '74 Spirit of America edition Nova. I wish she would have kept it but she traded it in for Chevette before I was born. Ugh...

  • Bellerophon Bellerophon on Dec 15, 2014

    I think this had the ghastly integral cylinder head. Intake, exhaust and head all one big heavy cast piece, always full of cracks.

    • -Nate -Nate on Dec 15, 2014

      . Prolly so ~ In about 1986 I had 8 ~ 10 1/2 ton Chevy trucks just sitting around The Mayor's garage after GM ran out of replacement heads and decided to redesign it , that took about a _year_ , we're not allowed to use non stock parts nor would our Mechanics ever attempt to use an earlier head and manifolds..... So many cars & light trucks got scrapped in the late 1980's because of this awful penny pinching GM clutsterfork . -Nate

  • SCE to AUX Love it, and the price is a bargain, actually. The clean exterior is nice.Also, this caught my attention: "105mm throttle body"... that's a lot of air flow.
  • Tassos I predict this will be a big hit and conquer new markets. Housewives will be lining up to grab them, and the dealers will charge $200k a unit. Why? Because they already buy SUVs and crossovers they never needed, which have much less interior space than their minivans. So they will sacrifice a bit more of that space, but at least they will not drive identical looking crossovers with their accursed neighbor's wife.I also predict the Tesla Plaid and even lesses Teslas will beat the living daylights of this idiotic vehicle, and without even breaking a sweat.
  • Bobbysirhan I fully expect to be reading about the last-of-the-line Challenger Demon 170 Redeye Widebody three years from now.
  • Dougjp Finally, luxury/strong performance in a compact size car. Unlike the Civic R, the market for this segment has predominantly automatics buyers. Yet year after year, it appears Acura can't make such a car. They did have a 10 speed with torque (Accord), which counters the thought that they can't make a torque capable automatic.Oh well, look elsewhere I guess.
  • Analoggrotto The real question, how many years or months after the end of production will this vehicle be completely eliminated from the street? Neon lights, yellow spoiler covers, idiotic stripes, brazzers license plate frames, obnoxious exhausts and all.