If modern lore has it right, the Fountain of Youth is located just a little south of where Interstate 10 ends in Jacksonville, Florida, and the road to St. Augustine begins. That’s the Fountain of Youth for the general populace, but if one happens to be a vintage Bow Tie aficionado, the Fountain of Youth is as close as their Chevrolet dashboard.
All one has to do to enjoy the age-reversing effects of a classic Chevy dashboard is to jump into the driver seat of a particular year or model they once owned in their youth and suddenly they’re feeling 20 years younger. Isomorphic correspondence is the term that best describes it; or, as most people know it, “nostalgia.” All it takes is a glance at a familiar gold-colored Bel Air emblem on a ’57 Chevy dashboard or a ’60 Impala 120-mph speedometer face and all those good old memories come rushing back.
The factory name for the color on this 1960 Chevy Impala is Tasco Turquoise. One glimpse of it could take a person right back to where they were stopped at a traffic light in 1962 and make them remember the song that was on the radio and the name of the girl next to them. Better than nebulous stock gauges, Auto Meter gauges fit right in and provide precise readings. White tuck ’n’ roll is sexy.
Look before you launch: Before the PRNDL shift quadrant was standardized, in true American Graffiti goofball style, it was easy to catch reverse instead of low. Note the Bow Tie high beam indicator light underneath 60 mph.
The double-hump cap on 1955 Chevy dashboards made it an easier job for General Motors to build right-hand drive cars for overseas export. Can you image how many people worldwide have fond memories of this year’s dashboard design?
The subject vehicle here is a ’57 Chevy gasser built in 1960 with modern racing instrumentation added. A shrunken 1957 210/Bel Air style steering wheel retains a stock flavor yet adds quicker steering response, plus more stomach clearance.
Amid billet aluminum and carbon-fiber enhancements, retaining the stock 1955 Chevy power brake pedal leaves an old-timey impression.
This unmolested 1957 150, with radio and clock delete plates left in place, makes this “plain Jane” dashboard have ‘modify me’ written all over it. It was a ’60s customizing tradition to chrome the glovebox door and ashtray to provide teenage dates with a makeup mirror.
Mixed nostalgia describes the installation of a 1958 Impala steering wheel with ’57 Bel Air dash trim to upscale the looks a 210.
On this ’57 cluster, the absence of a Powerglide or Turboglide shift quadrant indicates this was originally a manual transmission car. Note the inboard idiot lights and outboard turn signal indicators share bullet shaped styling.