1960 Chevrolet Corvair 700
Zoom icon

On October 2, 1959, General Motors' Chevrolet division introduced the 1960 Corvair. It was a new and radically different design for an American manufacturer. During the mid-1950s. The Volkswagen Beetle had become popular with economy-minded drivers. This caused GM to create an economy car to compete with it. This new car was powered by an air-cooled six-cylinder engine, first for Chevrolet, it was referred to as a ""flat six,"" since the cylinders were horizontally opposed. It was also mounted in the rear like the VW. European compact passenger cars began making inroads into the American car market in the late 1950s when the new arrivals drew interest from motorists seeking smaller, more economical vehicles for the daily commute and life around the new suburbs. Ford, Chrysler and Chevrolet all publicly downplayed the scale of the foreign-compact invasion while secretly working on their own entries into this emerging segment. While Ford's Falcon and Plymouth's Valiant relied on American design conventions, Chevrolet drew inspiration from the rear-engined, air-cooled Volkswagen and the sportier Porsche. After four years of development under the leadership of General Manager Ed Cole, Chevrolet debuted the Corvair for 1960. Even with the inroads Volkswagen had made into North America, the Corvair-initially offered as model 527 and 727 configurations-seemed a radical departure for an American manufacturer. Its flat-6 140 CI engine was out back, where Corvair advertising pronounced it belonged, and it followed the German convention with a split crankcase and separate cylinder barrels. The unitized body was another break from convention, as was its ""Quadri-Flex"" all-independent suspension. Chevrolet responded to disappointing sales by fitting bucket seats and sporty accessories, also rolling out the top-of-the-line model 900 Monza, which some credit for inspiring the 2-plus-2 Mustang, then under early development at Ford. The Monza proved a success, with a total of 11,926 sold after its arrival in showrooms in April 1960.


Engine Type
Engine Size
Fuel Specification


Body Color
Body Style
Paint Type


Corvair 700


Interior Color
Secondary Interior Color
Seating Type
Seat Material
Shifter Type
Center Console

Email Us

Contact Details