1966 Chevrolet Nova SS – with L79 Option

This is a very nice restored 1966 Chevy II Nova SS in Tuxedo Black (code AA) with red vinyl interior (that’s original). What makes this car particularly special is it is equipped with the new for 1966, L79 engine option that replaced the previous L74.

The L79 is a Corvette 327 cubic inch V8 with 350 horsepower paired with a Muncie M-21 4-speed transmission. It would certainly be fair to say these were Corvette powered sleepers! Who was expecting a compact car to be such a force to be reckoned with?

Nova was introduced in 1962 with a Super Sport becoming a model option in 1963. For 1964 to 1967 it became a separate series.

1966 Chevy Nova SS - Rear
Rear view showing the new for ’66, vertical taillights

The Nova SS was identified by the body sill moldings, SS grille emblem, “Super Sport” script on the rear fenders, front and rear wheel opening moldings, full-width rear deck panel with Chevy II nameplate and SS badge.

1966 Chevy II SS Interior
All-vinyl interior with bucket seats

You would also find a Super Sport badge of the glovebox door.

66 Chevy Nova SS Dash

This beautiful Nova was a 51,000 original mile car that has undergone a comprehensive and highly-detailed frame-off restoration.

Some available Chevy II options in 1966

Air conditioning (V8 only)$311
Power steering$84
Power brakes$42
Electric clock$16
AM/FM radio$134
Front Bumper Guard$9.50
Rear Bumper Guard$9.50


350 HP V8 Turbo Fire – L79$198.05
4 Speed Close Ratio Transmission$184.35
Push-button AM radio$57

The Chevy II had a wheelbase of 110″, an overall length of 183″ and width of 71.3″.

The L79 option cost an additional $198 and came with a 3-speed manual as standard. To get the 4-speed manual transmission on this car would have cost another $184. This engine was a really important step for Nova giving it real muscle car status.

1966 Chevy Nova SS L79 327/350 engine
L79 Corvette 327/350 HP – note the distinctive dual-snorkel chrome air breather

Chevrolet built 20,986 Nova SS cars for the 1966 model year. 4,675 of them were six cylinders, there were 16,311 V8s made with 3,547 of them being the L79 option. Prices for the Nova SS started at $2,430.

This ’66 Nova SS L79 is currently for sale on eBay. (follow the link for even more photos)

3 thoughts on “1966 Chevrolet Nova SS – with L79 Option”

  1. My wonderful cousin, “Butch,” had a L79 with a 3 speed manual with a double plate clutch… I was 10 years old sitting on the back bench seat. I still remember bouncing up and down on that back seat like a bucking mule. That’s when my dad leaned over to my brother, who was test driving it, and said “I think this is too much car for you.” My cousin sold it and bought a new Toyota LandCruiser. My brother bought a ’69 Jeep CJ 5 with a V6 engine instead. Still got the Jeep. The Chevy II? Its one that got away, unfortunately. Another one that got away…a 67 black on black Pontiac GTO that was our everyday grocery getter. Parents sold it when I was away at college. About the only time I didn’t bring that one up was on their death beds. They were such great parents I just couldn’t.

  2. I don’t know why , but my hometown had a lot of these . Most were 2-door posts with just the go-fast goodies , but I lusted over a silver SS with American mags .
    There were six owned by guys I knew , and a few more around , it’s the only street car I ever saw pull a wheelie .
    Someone at the local dealer knew which boxes to check .


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