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When it comes to classic Chevrolets, the Bel Air, Corvette, and Impala are arguably more popular than the Chevelle. And that’s a shame because the Chevelle is the perfect “hybrid.” It’s as stylish as the early 1970s Bel Air, easier to live with than the Impala (thanks to its more compact size), and just as powerful as the third-generation Corvette. And I might be subjective here, but I think it looks more muscular than the second-gen Camaro too.
Fifty years later and the second-generation Chevelle looks hotter than ever. I’ll always take a 1969 or 1970 model over the 1971 version, but I have to admit that the latter has aged rather well in terms of design. Whether it’s a period-correct restoration or a restomod with modern amenities, a 1971 Chevelle will stand out at any muscle car meeting.

The example you’re about to see below sits on the restomod side of things, but it’s a milder approach that retains the Chevelle’s original features inside and out. The wheels are the only departure from the classic Chevelle look. But while most restomods ride on Cragar or multi-spoke rims (usually paired with a slammed suspension), this Chevy “floats” on donk-style, 24-inch Amani rollers.

Granted, these wheels will probably upset a few Chevelle purists, but the two-tone, turbine-style rims are definitely eye-catching. And the red and polished finish works great with the red body and the chrome trim.

The Chevelle boasts minimal changes inside the cabin. It actually takes a close inspection to spot modern features. This interior is as vintage as they get. But the trunk is a different story. The area that used to carry a spare and a jack has been remodeled to include a premium audio system, speakers, and all.

Things become a lot more spectacular under the hood. Remember how I said that the second-gen Chevelle was just as powerful as the C3 Corvette? That’s because these cars shared a few engines, including the iconic 7.0- and 7.4-liter big blocks. This 1971 Chevelle no longer sports a vintage big-block, but it draws juice from an authentic Corvette engine.

Specifically, the owner stuffed an LS3 between the front wheels. Sourced from a C6-generation Corvette, the 6.2-liter V8 was introduced in 2008 and remained in production until 2013. The mill was good for 430 horsepower (or 436 horses with the optional vacuum-actuated valve exhaust) in the Corvette, pushing it from 0 to 60 mph (97 kph) in just four seconds.

I have no idea if this LS3 is still stock or not, but it seems powerful enough to spin the rear wheels with a light touch of the throttle. And needless to say, it sounds fantastic too.