Austerity has its appeal. High trim levels look great and are comfortable, but the bottom can have appeal in a different manner. For example, a Bel Air is a nice stylish 1950s cruiser, but the low-line 150 with rubber floor mat, no arm rests, and minimal ornamentation gives a pure view of Bow Tie transportation for 1957. And the 1957 Chevrolet that would vie for the most austere model would be the Sedan Delivery.
Interestingly, the Sedan Delivery was grouped with Chevrolet’s commercial vehicles rather than being part of the 150 series like the similar Utility Sedan, the main difference being the latter used the two-door sedan’s body while the Sedan Delivery used the two-door station wagon’s body. Consisting of a bench seat up front and not much else, the Sedan Delivery was perfect for tradespeople and those who needed to haul a load but didn’t need to move to a truck. The side glass was blacked out in standard form, but it was an available and rare option — the seller claims 92 were built like this.
And, unlike the truck, the Sedan Delivery was available with Chevrolet’s full range of engines, from the six to the Turbo-Fire 283 with fuel injection. Most sedan deliveries were built for duty and were powered by low-performance engines, but there must be a handful of high-performance versions out there.
This 1957 Sedan Delivery isn’t one of them, but its restored existence has been as a concours-level six-cylinder until a correct 270-horsepower 283 was transplanted. This solid-lifter, dual-quad small-block was one-step above the 250-horse fuel-injected engine and one step below the 283-horse fuel-injected version.
Note the rear hatch, which was unique and different from the regular station wagons. Only 8,907 Sedan Deliveries were built in 1957, which isn’t much. Now imagine how these were the most disposable of disposables, so you can imagine how difficult it is to find one in any shape, if not one in concours condition. We found it at the 2024 Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale Auction.