Basic Transportation: 1974 Chevrolet Nova 20K Mile Survivor – SOLD!

Sep 2020 | Classifinds, Malaise Monday

October 18th Update: While updating our Malaise Monday database, we confirmed the private seller of this ’74 Chevy Nova deleted their Craigslist ad, so we’re now able to call this one “Sold!”  This one may have got away, but if you have your heart set on something similar, email us the details of what you’re looking for or call Rudy directly at (908)295-7330.

Last week’s Malaise Monday features included a somewhat luxurious version of General Motor’s 1974 X-body, this 1974 Ventura Hatchback. At the more entry-level end of the end of this GM’s model line sat the Nova 6 four-door sedan typified by this 20,000 original mile time capsule first listed in September 2020 on Craigslist in our office location of Flemington, New Jersey for $5,995.  While Hagerty Insurance currently cannot provide a value for this vintage of Nova Sedans, the Collector Car Market Review Online Tool confirms this private seller had their Nova priced between the #3 “Good” appraisal of $4,225 and the #2 “Very Good” estimate of $6,475. 

1974 marked the sixth and final model year for Chevrolet’s third-generation Nova.  That year, Novas received larger parking lights and new bow-tie grille emblems, as well as modified bumpers that added two inches to the length and helped cushion minor impacts. Chevrolet finally phased out the venerable two-speed Powerglide automatic transmission with a lightweight version of the three-speed Turbo-Hydramatic 350 ( THM 250 ) already offered with the 350 cubic inch V8, the sole optional engine for that model year.  Nova sales rose for the third consecutive year as sales approached 400,000 cars for 1974. Six-cylinder Novas were the fastest gainers, as sales of V-8 Novas declined. These were the years of the first energy crisis as Middle Eastern countries cut back on oil exports. After waiting for hours in gas lines and fretting about the prospect of fuel rationing, thrifty compacts looked pretty good to plenty of Americans and it fit the bill.

Novas and all 1974 cars were fitted with a weight-sensitive relay within the front seat that prevented the vehicle from being started until the driver’s seatbelt had been fastened, following a safety mandate from the National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration (“NHTSA”).  Later, a law passed by Congress repealed the mandate requiring this type of device, declaring that it infringed on a driver’s freedom of choice, and allowed owners of 1974-model cars to have the seat belt interlock bypassed.  The devices were not included in future Nova models. Along with this controversial seat belt interlock, a new, more convenient “inertial reel” one-piece lap/shoulder safety belt assembly was standard for both front outboard passengers, along with a plastic clip attached to the headrest to guide the belt across the wearer’s shoulder.

We came across this 1974 Chevrolet Commerical highlighting the three “Nova 6” models for that year:

While someone may be tempted to use this ultra-low mileage Nova as their new daily driver, we hope the right collector picks this car to add as the no-frills example in their Chevy collection.  Good luck with the purchase!

Here’s the seller’s description:

“1974 Chevy Nova. 20k original miles. No rust or rot. Straight 6 cyl. PS/cloth bench seats/wire wheel covers. All original, garage kept. Don’t need to sell, but she deserves better than sitting in the garage. New battery, points, and condenser put in last Friday.


Do you have a Chevy Nova 6 story you’d like to share?  Comment below and let us know!


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