Junkyard Find: 1962 Chevrolet Biscayne Sedan

Murilee Martin
by Murilee Martin

During the early-to-mid 1960s, the king of the full-sized Chevrolet world was the loaded Impala. The Bel Air wasn’t quite as luxurious, but still had a decent amount of swank. For the bargain-conscious car shopper who wanted a bare-bones full-size sedan without a lot of costly gingerbread, the Chevy Biscayne was an excellent choice.

Here’s a ’62 that outlived most of the Impalas and Bel Airs, now ending its 56-year journey in a Denver self-service wrecking yard.

Conditions were wintry when I found this car, but neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night will stay your junkyard courier from his appointed rounds.

This car has the sensible-but-not-powerful 235-cubic-inch pushrod straight-six engine, rated at 135 horsepower in 1962. The original purchaser of this car wasn’t a total cheapskate, though, because the transmission is the optional Powerglide automatic instead of the more affordable three-on-the-tree manual that came standard.

The permanently flattened tires and completely fried interior indicate decades of outdoor storage prior to coming to this place. This car began its life at the St. Louis Assembly Plant, which was the second-closest-to-Denver GM factory building full-sized Chevrolets in 1962 (the plant in Arlington, Texas, was a bit closer).

There’s some rust— not much by Midwestern standards but enough to scare away any Colorado restorer who might have considered spiffing up a not-very-desirable Biscayne sedan. A full-sized 1960-1964 Chevrolet two-door in this condition probably would have avoided this fate.

General Motors sold 1,424,008 full-sized Chevrolets for the 1962 model year, 533,349 of which were sedans, and so this isn’t what you’d call a rare and unusual car. Still, it’s too bad nobody who encountered it before it came here was willing to make it into a budget cruiser or drag-race car.

There’s no telling how much of the USA this car saw during its long life.

Murilee Martin
Murilee Martin

Murilee Martin is the pen name of Phil Greden, a writer who has lived in Minnesota, California, Georgia and (now) Colorado. He has toiled at copywriting, technical writing, junkmail writing, fiction writing and now automotive writing. He has owned many terrible vehicles and some good ones. He spends a great deal of time in self-service junkyards. These days, he writes for publications including Autoweek, Autoblog, Hagerty, The Truth About Cars and Capital One.

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  • Ttacgreg Ttacgreg on Mar 02, 2018

    LOL the demographics of the commenters here is apparent. Greetings fellow old-timers!

    • See 1 previous
    • DownUnder2014 DownUnder2014 on Mar 03, 2018

      @Lorenzo A Bucks Party? I guess that's because the performers probably retire quickly. 2006 is probably equivalent to like 30 years ago... It's hard to imagine though, I suppose. I'm not an old-timer, but I find the stories posted here quite interesting, which keeps me coming back! And Junkyard Finds, of course.

  • DownUnder2014 DownUnder2014 on Mar 03, 2018

    I guess the sedans still aren't worth restoring as much as the two doors... It probably lived for maybe 25-30 years and then spent the next 25-30 in situ and then scrapped after the owner died or something like that...

  • FreedMike Not much to look at, but these were sweet to drive.
  • EBFlex Ford finally making a good decision although they should shut down their EV operations and investment all together. Why lose that money too?
  • Mike Lol. This is the king of suvs. And its made by GM.Why is everyone trashing it?Top of its its class for a quarter century.
  • Frank Drove past there last week, plant has a huge poster of a bronco on the outside. I was thinking "Is that where they build the new broncos?" I know they use to make the Edge and that other mundane SUV there but I believe both have been canned.
  • CanadaCraig Toyota saw this coming. So good for them for being courageous enough to say, "Wait a minute. Let's not rush into anything."