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Username Post: 70 SS GM research vehicle        (Topic#355162)
Posts: 1

Reg: 02-09-19
02-09-19 01:25 PM - Post#2759486    

What an exciting find, not only is this 1970 Monte Carlo an SS 454, it is, according to the build sheet, a lab rat. Originally purchased by GM Research Laboratories in Warren Michigan, Purchase Order #93297 and given a car number of 045, this numbers matching LS5 was found by the previous owner at a used car lot in Lowell, Michigan, not far from it’s original Warren Michigan home. The previous owner kept the car for 15 years before selling to it’s current owner. At 31k miles showing on the odometer, this car runs and drives great. The 769 code Saddle vinyl interior has little wear and appears to be original.
The car has Autumn Gold (RPO 58) paint, buckets, console and a ton of options as listed on the build sheet. The GM Heritage Center manager says that if the car was given a number, then the car was definitely was used for research. What I am interested to find out is if the GM research vehicle history adds any value to to car and to what extent. We may never know what research was done on the car as no records are available, but just having that connection is very interesting to me.


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Posts: 15355

Loc: Baltimore, MD
Reg: 11-27-04
02-10-19 06:21 PM - Post#2759586    
    In response to Lab-rat045

Interesting find. We would love to see some pics. I don’t know if the test mule status adds any value. Could go either way. If the car has things on it that never made it into regular production vehicles it would definitely add value. I don’t know about in the early 70s, but later test mule cars usually didn’t get assigned a VIN. They were usually donated to shop classes or crushed when the research was done. I know of a late 70s Z/28 that was used as a mule, donated to a school and then sold to a private party. The person had to go through the California police to get an assigned VIN as the car didn’t have one.

Friends don’t let friends drive Fords.

1999 Silverado Z71 4X4 extra-cab short bed
1983 Malibu Fauxmad - tubbed
1978 El Camino Kustomized
1972 Monte Carlo
1957 210 handyman wagon
1957 Nomad sport wagon
1957 Cameo Carrier

Posts: 350

Reg: 07-09-18
08-29-21 10:08 AM - Post#2826214    
    In response to Lab-rat045

I wouldn't get too excited. It could have been anything that caused the vehicle to get on the list for the research center. A big block during the first year of catalytic converters would have been enough of a reason to call it research.


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