V8 Era (1960-66)

• The famous high oil pressure Chevrolet 235 six cylinder engine (since 1954 in trucks) was mostly discontinued at the end of the 1962 year. Only the 4×4 carried it through 1963.

• With the 230, 250, and 292 series of new Chevrolet six cylinders in 1963, came the introduction of the alternator. The cast iron generator was history. A separate voltage regulator was near the radiator support core through 1975.

• For 1960, GMC introduced their own cast iron V-6, 305 engine. This very dependable, powerful worker was carried until 1969. GMC made this their only power plant through 1965 when they also used Chevrolet’s inline six.

• Both Chevrolet and GMC in 1960-63 and in 1964-66 cabs came from the same tooling. However, each brand has their specific style of dash board welded to the cab.

• From 1960-62 both Chevrolet and GMC 1/2 and 3/4 ton came with torsion bar for front suspension (no front coil springs). This is an excellent system and gives a smooth ride in comparison to the straight axle system from 1959 and older. It is said that high production costs resulted in a change to a more conventional coil spring design in 1963.

• Chevrolet park light lenses were from the same mold between 1960-66, however, federal regulations required an industry change from clear to amber in 1963.

• GMC park light lenses in 1960-61 are different than 1962-66 (neither are like Chevrolet). Due to the change to the amber color in 1963, the 1962 GMC clear lens is a “one year only” style. GMC park light lenses have the words “Cats-Eye” molded into the plastic.

• In-dash factory air was available on new Chevrolet trucks in 1965, though GM dealer installed under-dash air had been used since about 1958. GMC did not offer in-dash factory air until 1967. Dealer under-dash air was a GMC option.

• Only AM radio (non-push button) was available in either Chevrolet or GMC between 1955-69.

• All pickup bed bottoms remained the proven yellow pine with metal bed strip design.

• An excellent example of standardizing pickups (they were designed as work vehicles) is the step bed. Almost no changes between 1954-87.

• Large back windows in cabs were an option. Some buyers in warmer states preferred to always stay with the small window to lessen interior summer heat.

• In 1961, 1/2 ton wheels changed from having spring clips to hold the hub cap. Three raised spots on the center wheel hub now held a new hub cap design. This reduced both hub cap and wheel production costs.

• The dual sealed beam headlight design of 1958 GM trucks was replaced in the 1962 Chevrolet with the single light system. In GMC, their dual lights were used to the end of the 1972 series.

• To lower costs, pickup rear bumper brackets in 1964 changed from a forged design to stamped steel.

• Chrome grills were not available on Chevrolet trucks between 1960-66. The deluxe trucks used a high shine anodized aluminum. Due to the rarity of this grill, restorers today usually chrome the standard white grill. GMC offered chromed grills – not anodized aluminum.

8 thoughts on “V8 Era (1960-66)

  • July 16, 2014 at 9:50 am

    Hello There. I discovered your weblog using msn. That is an extremely well written article.

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  • March 9, 2015 at 8:16 pm

    Looking at instructions to replace the parts on a 1964 steering wheel horn assembly. Has the deluxe horn ring from the Belair.

    Horn Ring was broke purchased new one but didn’t pay enough attention to how all the parts kept the spring from sounding the horn after putting back together.

    Spring is removed for now.

  • July 13, 2015 at 8:22 am

    Working on a 1962-63 GMC fleetside V6 165 HP. Did these have a positive ground system? Hooked a new battery up to it and the terminal (pos) got warm. Any ideas?

  • August 7, 2015 at 5:00 pm

    I have a 1965 c10 and would like to keep the 3 speed column shift but it is in bad shape. Is there a place to buy parts to rebuild the shifter/column? I have tried all that I can think of.

  • October 2, 2015 at 9:16 pm

    Have no headlights nor front parking lights. Rear taillights working. 1965 c10 any ideas where to start?

  • April 30, 2017 at 7:11 pm

    Hi I just purchased a 66 chevy truck. it has a 250 6 cyl with three on the tree. does anyone know of a 5 speed that will bolt up to my 6 cyl bell housing.

  • April 25, 2018 at 12:21 pm

    Will a 66 Chevy cab fit on either a 61 or 62 frame?

  • May 13, 2018 at 4:14 pm

    66 C10/218 V8. I am struggling to get the Oil Canister free. The center bolt is fine; however, the canister is simply frozen in place.


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