L36 or L72: 1968 Chevrolet Caprice 427 Station Wagon – Sold!
In 1968 Chevrolet produced over 175,000 full-size, four-door station wagons split between the bare-bones Biscayne, the value-conscious Bel Air, the sporty Impala, and the top-of-the-line Caprice. While the vast majority of these wagons made ends meet with either Chevy’s 307- or 327 cubic small block V8, the current caretaker of this Caprice listed on Craigslist in Elbridge, New York (Syracuse) states his wagon is only one of 191 factory-equipped with the 427 big block mill, although the seller doesn’t clarify whether its the 385 horsepower L36 version or the 425 horsepower L72 option. Assuming the former, a check of the Hagerty Insurance Online Valuation Tool confirms this private seller has his rare Caprice priced $2,100 below the current #4 “Fair” estimate of $14,100.
Introduced in mid-1965 as a luxury trim package for the Impala four-door hardtop, Chevrolet offered a full line of Caprice models for the 1966 and subsequent model years, including a “formal hardtop” coupe and an Estate station wagon. The 1968 Caprice received a minor facelift that included a new grille with taillights set into the bumper (except for the station wagons) and optional hidden headlamps. Side marker lamps became standard on all U.S. cars and the Caprice carried over the optional white corner marker lamps at the forward edge of the fenders in addition to the amber parking lamps which were illuminated with the headlights. All 1968 Chevrolets received front side marker lamps on the fender; cars with an optional engine were identified with its cubic inch displacement listed on half the bezel; the lamp itself occupied the other half. The fiber optics monitoring system was offered again as an option. The L72 427 cubic inch 425 hp Turbo-Jet V8 returned to the option list after a one-year hiatus. Inside, the instrument panel received a revised instrument cluster with a return to the horizontal sweep speedometer and a revised three-spoke steering wheel.
Since the private seller does not clarify it, we’re hoping one of our readers can determine from the pictures and serial numbers provided whether the 427 engine in this Caprice is the L36 or L72 version. Please comment below if you know. From all appearances, including the substantial undercarriage pictures provided, this is a unique and very solid Caprice station wagon worthy of investing in a cosmetic restoration, however if you decide to leave it as is, you’ll have a lot of fun flooring the gas pedal to hear that wonderful big block spool up. Good luck with the purchase!
Here’s the seller’s description:
“Very rare, numbers matching, 427 TH/400 12 bolt Caprice wagon. 1 of 191 built in 1968. Solid car from VA with 95k miles on it and one repaint(same color). Lots of original parts still on the car including the carb, alternator, distributor, starter, radiator, front shocks, brake drums and coil springs. Options include factory dual exhaust, front corner lamps, power tailgate window, power drum brakes and power steering. This car does not have a third seat.
Within the last year it’s gotten a new battery tray, fuel pump, rubber fuel lines, power brake booster, master cylinder, brake hoses, replacement gas tank and sending unit, rebuilt carb, tune up, NOS tail light, and front tires. The car starts, stops, runs and drives.
I have most of the original build sheet. The VIN is legible on it as well as several options. It shows that the black seat belts and the dual exhaust are correct for the car. I also have the original full hubcaps.
Here is your chance to own a super rare big block muscle car! This car is more rare than an SS 427 Impala. With only 191 built, I’d bet there’s less than 20 of these still around today.
$12,000 NO TRADES!“
Do you have a big block powered Caprice story you’d like to share? Comment below and let us know!