The Chevy II was borne out of the disastrous experiment known as the Chevy Corvair. In troduced in model year 1960, the Corvair was Chevrolet’s first stab an economy, compact car. The design was startlingly innovative, built with the engine at the rear, but consumers found it too strange and didn’t take to it. While the brand eventually found some success as a high-powered sporty Corvair Monza, offered as a convertible starting in 1962, the model was officially cursed when consumer advocate Ralph Nader condemned it in his 1965 book, “Unsafe at Any Speed,” for a problem in the Corvair suspension that had been fixed by model year 1964.

The engineers who went back to the drawing board in search of the Corvair's successor decided to go the same route as Ford and Chrysler by releasing a more conventional compact car (basically, a scaled-down full-size car), which was dubbed the Chevy II. Released in model year 1962, these affordable and attractive cars came in sedan, hard-top, and convertible styles and with four- or six-cylinder engines. The speedier sports versions were tagged Nova, and by 1963, they were available with Chevy’s coveted SS (Super Sport) engine package.

In 1968, the Chevy II was abolished in favor the Chevrolet Nova name, and the line got the curvaceous “Coke bottle” styling treatment from GM design chief Bill Mitchell. When the Corvair was dropped in 1969, the Nova became the smallest car in the Chevy line—a title it held for one year before the Chevy Vega was introduced in 1970. The 1969 Nova could be ordered with a 375 bhp, 396 cid V-8 engine that turned it into a super-charged “muscle car”—those Novas are especially coveted by car lovers today.

One urban legend asserts that the Chevy Nova, offered in the Latin America countries like Mexico and Venezuela between 1972 and 1978, failed miserably there because “no va” means “it doesn’t go” in Spanish.

This popular story, in reality, is completely unfounded. For one, Spanish speakers are unlikely to read “nova” as “no va,” the same way English speakers wouldn’t read “notable” or “carpet” as “no table” or “car pet.” “Nova” means “new” in Portuguese, something any fan of Brazillian bossa nova music would know, and Nova is also the name of a Mexican gasoline company. Lastly, “it doesn’t go” is not an expression anyone would naturally use to describe a car that doesn’t run, in English or Spanish.

But more importantly, during the '70s, the Novas that Chevy intended for the Latin American market sold well in Mexico and were so popular in Venezuela they surpassed Chevy’s expectations.

Even though the Nova had a reputation for dependability, it was phased out for model year 1979, and the last original Novas were produced in 1978. However, the Nova name was revived briefly in the late '80s as a front-wheel-drive subcompact that shared a design with Toyota.

Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Jim Snell’s tribute to the 1959 Chevy Impala and other Chevrolets (Bel Air, Two-Ten Wagon, etc.) from the 1950s a… [read review or visit site]

Hemmings Auto Blogs

Hemmings Auto Blogs

This great (and frequently updated) blog from the folks at Hemmings Motor News is a visual feast of old and new pho… [read review or visit site]

Clubs & Associations

Discussion Forums

Other Great Reference Sites

Most watched eBay auctions    

Original Gm Muncie M-22 Rock Crusher 4 Speed Transmission Real Deal 1968 Trans!Pontiac : Other Nova L79 Ss 1967 Pontiac Acadian Canso Sport Deluxe Super Rare 4 Speed 327Original Gm Muncie 4 Speed Trans 1967 M-20 Wide Ratio Super Clean Very Rare CaseChevrolet : Nova Coupe 1972 Chevy Nova Ss Project Car Running And Driving Just Passed Inspection HotChevrolet : Nova Guy 1972 Nova All Original Paint Original Documentation 61 K Original MileChevrolet : Nova Stock 1963 Chevy Nova GasserChevrolet : Nova Custom 1973 Chevrolet Nova Custom 1 Owner Numbers Matching 350 77 K MilesChevrolet : Nova Ss 1969 Nova Big Block 396 4 Speed 12 Bolt Ss Badging Power Steering And BrakesChevrolet : Nova 1969 Chevy Nova L 88 427 Polished Floors Pdb 4 Spd 12 Bolt Rotisserie RestoChevrolet : Nova 2 Door Hard Top Super Sport 1963 Chevrolet Nova Super Sport Original Hot Rod Low Rod Rat Rod Low RiderChevrolet : Nova Base Coupe 2-door 1969 Chevrolet Nova Pro Touring1968 1969 Corvette Camaro Gto 442 Muncie M20 Wide Ratio 4 Speed TransmissionChevrolet : Nova Base Coupe 2-door 1972 Chevrolet Nova Base Coupe 2 Door 5.7 LChevrolet : Nova Ss 1972 Chevy Nova Super Sport 454 Big Block Factory 4 Speed Power Disc Brakes SsChevrolet : Nova 1969 Chevy Nova 350 350 Power Steering Great Driver Must SeeChevrolet : Nova Guy * Real 1969 Super Sport * Black Buckets * 396/375hp. M21 4 Speed * 12 Bolt 4:11Chevrolet : Nova 100 Series 1966 Chevy Ii Nova WagonChevrolet : Nova 2dr Hartop 1966 Chevyii Ss Nova Tribute CustomChevrolet : Nova 2 Door Sedan Coupe 1966 Chevy Nova Restored New EverythingChevrolet : Nova Ss 1965 Chevrolet Nova SsChevrolet : Nova Two Door Sedan Coupe 1972 Chevrolet Nova 350 4 Speed Show Quality Restored VideoChevrolet : Nova None 1963 Nova Ii Gasser Project Barn Find Hotrod Pro Street Race Drag CarChevrolet : Nova 2 Door Post 1967 Nova Highly Detaild Inside And OutChevrolet : Nova 2 Door 1968 Chevy NovaBurberry Brit Womens Jacket Diamond Quilted Nova Check Black Coat Medium M PetitChevrolet : Nova Super Sport 64 Chevrolet Nova Super Sport California Car Rare Factory V 8Chevrolet : Nova Ii 1962 Chevy Ii Nova Autumn Gold Coupe 283Chevrolet : Nova Ss 1966 Chevrolet NovaUsa East Coast "nova Anglia" New York Boston Orig. Engr. Map Homann 1720 #b402Swarovski Optik Habicht 3-9x36a Nova 3x9x36 Rifle Scope Duplex Reticle 1" NiceChevrolet : Nova Ss Options 1972 Nova Ss Options 350 4 Th 400 Dual Flowmasters Pwr Disc Ice Cold Factory AcChevrolet : Nova Base Coupe 2-door 1970 Chevrolet Nova Base Coupe 2 Door 2.5 LAuthentic Burberry Wrap Shawl Nova Plaid LargePontiac : Other Ss 1969 Pontiac Acadian Ss Can Version Of Nova Ss 454 Ci 15 K In Paint See VideoComic Books 1st Appearances Of Rocket Raccoon Iron Fist Starlord Nova ModokChevrolet : Nova None 1965 Chevrolet Nova Ss Drag Racing CarNova Low Floor Series 40' Transit Shuttle BusWomen's Burberry Nova Check Black Quilted Jacket - Size Large - Euc!Chevrolet : Nova Ss 1971 Nova Ss Restomod 350 Ci Lt 1 6 Speed Trans Am Drive Train Chevrolet MusclePeahtree Audio Nova.preTc Electronic Nova System Multi-effects Guitar Effect PedalVinatge Burberry Classic Nova Check Pattern Men's Button Down Shirt Euc! GenuineChevrolet : Nova Ss Patina Two Door 4speed Ss Rally PosiChevrolet : Nova Chrome 1962 Chevy 11 190 Cu InChevrolet : Nova Ss 1967 Nova Show Car Pro Street All Custom Interior Show Quality Paint 406 Sbc1967 Nova Ss Bucket Seats1966-67 Nova So 4 Speed ConsoleBernina Nova 900 Sewing Maching1969 1970 14x7 Chevelle Camaro Nova Oem Wheels Rims Rings Caps Rally Ss Set 4 Iwata 5910 Ws400-1401 Super Nova 1.4 Hd Compliant Paint Gun NewGm Seat Belts Black Chevy Super Sport Ss Deluxe Camaro Nova Firebird Gto Rs 69Authentic Burberry Women's Jacket Coat Nova Check Black Tan Red PlaidChevrolet : Nova Base Coupe 2-door 1970 Chevrolet Nova SsChevrolet : Nova Chevy Ii Nova 400 Station Wagon 1964 Chevy Ii Nova Station WagonChevrolet : Nova Coupe 1973 Chevy NovaGraco Nova Ultra 395 Smart Control Paint SprayerGm Seat Belts Black Chevy Super Sport Ss Deluxe Chevelle Nova Impala Gto Rs 70Burberry Nova CrossbodyChevrolet : Nova 2 Door 1972 Nova V 8 Pump Gas 4 Speed Muncie Excellent ConditionAuth Burberry Multicolored Long Sleeve Nova Check Trench Coat Sz 6