1959 Chevrolet El Camino




1959 El Camino; Slight Resto-m0d with a 350/350 fuel injected Ram Jet with 700R transmission and disc brakes, also has PW and PL. This is not a muscle car nor a hot rod; it is a sweat little updated mild custom. The paint on this vehicle is now nearly 16 years old and was built to be a driver but still was good enough for a multi-page feature in Chevy High Performance magazine a few years back.

Katrina and I purchased this car in 1999 to be a pick-up to drive to Home Depot and haul stuff with. It hadn’t been in our garage for more than a few days before we started ripping into it for improvements. One thing led to another and before you know it you are deep into a major project.

When we got the car it was powered by a 455 Olds and the motor looked like it had 400,000 miles on it. The interior consisted of two Silverado bucket seats and a huge console out of the same truck. The bed of the El Camino was beaten severely and the paint was dull.

Today, it has a 350/350 fuel injected Ram Jet motor with a 700R4 behind it, disc brakes, PS, PB, Power Windows, Power Locks and Power Antenna. We straightened out the bed out and put a snap on cover over it. We also added Vintage Air, a new set of BFGs. We also redid all the gauges and installed a bench seat and upholstered it to vintage style and redid all the chrome. I buffed and buffed and buffed on the paint until it looked acceptable.

Next up is a complete new wiring harness for the entire car, just don’t like the looks of the old stuff plus the electrical is a little skittish on when it wants to work and when it doesn’t.

PROVENANCE:-Original owner’s manual; reproduction;

-Route 66 San Bernardino, CA 2004 Cruisin Award and Parade of Champions (twice);

-Chevy High Performance Magazine; Feature April 2004;

-Chevy High Performance Magazine Calendar; Issue February 2005, April car;

-Super Chevy Magazine Las Vegas 2003 Editors Choice Top 10 Show Cars.


  1. hi could you tell me was it difficult fitting air,is there any hints also what system did you fit.ive just purchased a 59 el camino and thinking of air con
    thanx troy

  2. Troy, there is lots of room in these big old cars to work. There are also a couple of firms that do these conversions. Do a search on the internet. You can start with Vintage Air, that is what I used and they have a system for the 59.

  3. Guy I used to work with drove a 59 to work in the 70s…..He passed away some years ago ,so not know where it is now…..Hot rods were Big in Northern Indiana,not so much now.Even the Swap Meets Suck!….I guess ricers rule here,mostly…..oh there are a few around but not like it used to be.I had a 69 elkie,and a 72 nova at one time.Wish I still had them.

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