Celebrated guitarist and music producer Ry Cooder's Grammy-nominated Contemporary Folk album Chvez Ravine is "a magical-realist street opera celebrating the life and death of the barrio that the Dodgers killed," says Mike Davis, author of City of Quartz, Excavating the Future in Los Angeles. The album has also been called a post-World War II-era American narrative of "cool cats," radios, UFO sightings, J. Edgar Hoover, red scares and baseball.

In reality, the record is a tribute to the long-gone Los Angeles Latino enclave known as Chvez Ravine. Using real and imagined historical characters, Cooder and friends created an album that recollects various aspects of the poor but vibrant hillside Chicano community, which was bulldozed by developers in the 1950s in the interest of "progress." Dodger Stadium ultimately was built on the site. Cooder says, "Here's some music for a place that you don't know, up a road that you don't go. Chvez Ravine, where the sidewalk ends."

The musical strains of Los Angeles-including conjunto, corrido, R&B, Latin pop and jazz-conjure the ghosts of Chvez Ravine and Los Angeles at mid-century. On this 15-track album, sung in Spanish and English, Cooder is joined by East L.A. legends like Chicano music patriarch Lalo Guerrero, recently deceased Pachuco boogie king Don Tosti, Thee Midniters front man Little Willie G., and Ersi Arvizu of The Sisters and El Chicano.

A Los Angeles native born in 1947, Cooder has been working in Cuba since 1996, producing The Buena Vista Social Club, with Ibrahim Ferrer, Ferrer's Buenos Hermanos and Mambo Sinuendo, all Grammy winners. Three years in the making, Chvez Ravine marks his musical homecoming to America, which he hopes will generate interest in a documentary that he's planning on the East L.A. music scene of the '40s and '50s.

To further bring to light the whole land-grab incident, Cooder is having a '53 Chevrolet ice cream truck built as a rolling tribute to Chvez Ravine. To bring his vision to life, he has enlisted the talents of well-known lowrider builder Fernando Ruelas (and sons) of Duke's Car Club in Los Angeles, and noted Chicano artist Victor Valdez of San Antonio, Texas.

"I wanted Fernando to build this ice cream truck like the old Good Humor trucks that used to go through the neighborhood," Cooder says. "But inside the box, we'll have a diorama of Chvez Ravine. On the outside, I will have a [full body] mural where every panel tells a piece of the story. It will be done by genius Chicano artist Vincent Valdez, whose painting Kill The Pachuco, a violent depiction of the '40s Zoot-Suit Riots in Los Angeles, won critical acclaim."

There's still a lot to do to the previously trashed truck. But the bodywork is finished, the engine is done, the brakes are on and the murals are being laid out. Is Cooder happy with the progress? "It sits just so, I tell you," he says. "The slope is the thing. Good Humor figured that out. This is for me. I've wanted an ice cream truck forever. You can't just work and work and work. And this [truck] is worth it! This thing is something else."

Monte Carlo MattersAttention Chevy Monte Carlo drivers and restorers! Call 800-222-1020 (GM) and ask for a "restoration packet" for your car. Have your VIN number and mailing address ready and then crack open a cold one and wait for the package to arrive. It's free in the U.S. Unfortunately, for most of Canada, this service is not free. EST hours are 8 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. Monday - Friday.

To determine your Monte Carlo's original options, check the codes listed on the trunk lid sticker. If you're not the original owner of your vehicle, be sure that the VIN on the sticker and the VIN on your car match, just in case Pedro over at Maaco might have switched trunk lids on you.

Chevy debuted the Monte Carlo in the '70 model year, when it was advertised as having "the longest hood ever," and the popular car was offered through '88. In '87, when GM cancelled the Buick Grand National, they kept the plant running until December, and all of the GNs built after August were still labeled as '87 models. We who owned them called them '87.5s to distinguish them from the regular '87s.

It's interesting to note that Monte Carlo SS models were also built in the Flint, Michigan, plant alongside the GNs, and those built after August were indeed labeled as '88s! It's possible to have an '87 GN that was actually built later than an '88 Monte Carlo! The steering unit on the SS models is one of the most desirable units on the market as far as G-bodies go.

What makes an SS?

So you wanna know what makes your SS an SS? Well, the heads of that engine are from the Cross-fire Camaro, and the cam from the L-81 Corvette, while the exhaust is specific to the car. As far as the body goes, the rear is specific to the SS, as well as the nose and striping. Getting the power through the gears is a specifically built transmission that's mated to a wheel/ tire and suspension package of equal caliber. All of these elements combine to make the SS, which is also the last full-frame RWD carbed car made by GM.

How to make sure that your '83-'88 SS is really an SS.

Make sure that the eighth digit in the VIN is a "G." Check the trunk lid sticker and make sure that the following codes are present-B4V, L69 and F41. Also make sure that the VIN on this sticker matches the VIN on your car and the VIN on the driver's door. Don't be afraid to track down the original owner of the car and ask when in doubt.

Chevrolet Monte Carlo production numbers 1970-'88
Legend: RPO=option code (Regular Production Option); WB=wheelbase; CW=curb weight; BP=base price; PR=production run

1970 Monte Carlo
Monte Carlo hardtop coupe
RPO: 13857
WB: 116.0"
CW: 3460 lbs
BP: $3,123
PR: 130,657 includes 3,823 with the SS454 package

1970 Engine Availability
350-c.i.d. standard
Type: V-8
BxS: 4.00x3.48
BHP: 250
350-c.i.d. optional
Type: V-8
BxS: 4.00x3.48
BHP: 300
400-c.i.d. optional
Type: V-8
BxS: 4.12x3.75
BHP: 265
400-c.i.d. optional
Type: V-8
BxS: 4.12x3.75
BHP: 330
454-c.i.d. optional (standard w/SS454 package)
Type: V-8
BxS: 4.25x4.00
BHP: 360

1971 Monte Carlo
Monte Carlo hardtop coupe
RPO: 13857
WB: 116.0"
CW: 3,488 lbs
BP: $3,416
PR: 128,600

1971 Engine Availability
350-c.i.d. standard
Type: V-8
BxS: 4.00x3.48
BHP: 245
350-c.i.d. optional
Type: V-8
BxS: 4.00x3.48
BHP: 270
402-c.i.d. optional
Chevrolet still referred to this engine as a 396, even though actual displacement was 402.0 cubic inchesType: V-8
BxS: 4.13x3.76
BHP: 300
454-c.i.d. optional (standard w/SS454 package)
Type: V-8
BxS: 4.25x4.00
BHP: 365
454-c.i.d. optional
Type: V-8
BxS: 4.25x4.00
BHP: 425

1972 Monte Carlo
Monte Carlo hardtop coupe V-8
RPO: 1H57
WB: 116.0"
CW: 3,506 lbs
BP: $3,362
PR: 180,819

1972 Engine Availability
Note: This year, General Motors changed the way that horsepower was measured. HP was now measured with net ratings (full accessories and exhaust included) as opposed to gross HP (engine power without accessories and exhaust hooked up). This had the effect of making it look as though horsepower had dropped significantly, even though it really hadn't changed much. Generally, net HP ratings are 20- to 30-percent less than gross HP ratings.

350-c.i.d. standard
Type: V-8
BxS: 4.00x3.48
BHP: 175
402-c.i.d. optional
Chevrolet still referred to this engine as a 396, even though actual displacement was 402.0 cubic inches
Type: V-8
BxS: 4.13x3.76
BHP: 240
454-c.i.d. optional
Type: V-8
BxS: 4.25x4.00
BHP: 270

1973 Monte Carlo
Note: This was the first year for the second generation Monte Carlo.
Monte Carlo sport coupe
RPO: H57
WB: 116.0"
CW: 3,713 lbs
BP: $3,415
PR: 4,960
Monte Carlo S sport coupe
RPO: H57
WB: 116.0"
CW: 3,620 lbs
BP: $3,562
PR: 177,963
Monte Carlo Landau sport coupe
RPO: H57
WB: 116.0"
CW: 3,722 lbs
BP: $3,806
PR: 107,770

1973 Engine Availability
350-c.i.d. standard
Type: V-8
BxS: 4.00x3.48
BHP: 145
350-c.i.d. optional
Type: V-8
BxS: 4.00x3.48
BHP: 175
454-c.i.d. optional
Type: V-8
BxS: 4.25x4.00
BHP: 245

1974 Monte Carlo
Monte Carlo S sport coupe
RPO: H57
WB: 116.0"
CW: 3,926 lbs
BP: $3,885
PR: 184,873
Monte Carlo Landau sport coupe
RPO: H57
WB: 116.0"
CW: 3,928 lbs
BP: $4,129
PR: 127,344

1974 Engine Availability
350-c.i.d. standard
Type: V-8
BxS: 4.00x3.48
BHP: 145
400-c.i.d. optional
Type: V-8
BxS: 4.12x3.75
BHP: 180
454-c.i.d. optional
Type: V-8
BxS: 4.25x4.00
BHP: 235

1975 Monte Carlo
Monte Carlo S sport coupe
RPO: H57
WB: 116.0"
CW: 3,927 lbs
BP: $4,249
PR: 148,529
Monte Carlo Landau sport coupe
RPO: H57
WB: 116.0"
CW: 3,930 lbs
BP: $4,519
PR: 110,380

1975 Engine Availability
350-c.i.d. standardType: V-8BxS: 4.00x3.48BHP: 145350-c.i.d. optionalType: V-8BxS: 4.00x3.48BHP: 155400-c.i.d. optionalType: V-8BxS: 4.12x3.75BHP: 175454-c.i.d. optionalType: V-8BxS: 4.25x4.00BHP: 235

1976 Monte Carlo
Monte Carlo S sport coupe
RPO: H57
WB: 116.0"
CW: 3,907 lbs
BP: $4,673
PR: 191,370
Monte Carlo Landau sport coupe
RPO: H57
WB: 116.0"
CW: not available
BP: $4,966
PR: 161,902

1976 Engine Availability
305-c.i.d. standard
Type: V-8
BxS: 3.74x3.48
BHP: 140 305-c.i.d. optional
Type: V-8
BxS: 3.74x3.48
BHP: 145 350-c.i.d. optional
Type: V-8
BxS: 4.00x3.48
BHP: 165 400-c.i.d. optional
Type: V-8
BxS: 4.12x3.75
BHP: 175

1977 Monte Carlo
Note: 1977 was the only model year that Chevrolet's mid-size car line was longer and heavier than the full-size car line, due to the downsizing of the full-size cars a year earlier than the mid-size downsizing.

Monte Carlo S sport coupe
RPO: H57
WB: 116.0"
CW: 3,852 lbs
BP: $4,968
PR: 224,327
Monte Carlo Landau sport coupe
RPO: H57
WB: 116.0"
CW: not available
BP: $5,298 PR: 186,711

1977 Engine Availability
305-c.i.d. standard
Type: V-8
BxS: 3.74x3.48
BHP: 145 350-c.i.d. optional
Type: V-8
BxS: 4.00x3.48
BHP: 170

1978 Monte Carlo
Note: 1978 was the first year of the third generation Monte Carlo. The '78 models were a foot shorter in length and weighed nearly 800 pounds less. This was the first year that a V-6 was available in the Monte Carlo. This was also the year that the A-body car line (Malibu) merged with the G-body cars (Monte Carlo). While the two car lines had differing sheet metal, they were the same underneath.

Monte Carlo sport coupe V-6
RPO: Z37
WB: 108.1
CW: 3,040
BP: $4,785
Monte Carlo sport coupe V-8
RPO: Z37
WB: 108.1
CW: 3,175 BP: $4,935 Total Monte Carlo sport coupe production: 216,730 Monte Carlo Landau sport coupe V-6 RPO: Z37 WB: 108.1 CW: not available BP: $5,678 Monte Carlo Landau sport coupe V-8 RPO: Z37 WB: 108.1 CW: not available BP: $5,828 Total Monte Carlo Landau sport coupe production: 141,461

1978 Engine Availability
231-c.i.d. standard w/V-6 models
Type: V-6
BxS: 3.80x3.40
BHP: 105 305-c.i.d. standard w/V-8 models
Type: V-8
BxS: 3.74x3.48
BHP: 145

1979 Monte Carlo Monte Carlo sport coupe V-6
RPO: Z37
WB: 108.1
CW: 3,039
BP: $5,333
Monte Carlo sport coupe V-8
RPO: Z37
WB: 108.1
CW: 3,169
BP: $5,598
Total Monte Carlo sport coupe production: 225,073
Monte Carlo Landau sport coupe V-6
RPO: Z37
WB: 108.1
CW: not available
BP: $6,183 Monte Carlo Landau sport coupe V-8
RPO: Z37
WB: 108.1
CW: not available
BP: $6,448 Total Monte Carlo Landau sport coupe production: 91,850

1979 Engine Availability 200-c.i.d. standard w/V-6 models Type: V-6 BxS: 3.50x3.48
BHP: 94 231-c.i.d. optional w/V-6 models
Type: V-6
BxS: 3.80x3.40
BHP: 115 267-c.i.d. standard w/V-8 models
Type: V-8
BxS: 3.50x3.48
BHP: 125 305-c.i.d. optional w/V-8 models
Type: V-8
BxS: 3.74x3.48
BHP: 160

1980 Monte Carlo
Monte Carlo sport coupe V-6
RPO: Z37
WB: 108.1
CW: 3,104
BP: $6,524 Monte Carlo sport coupe V-8
RPO: Z37
WB: 108.1
CW: 3,219
BP: $6,604
Total Monte Carlo sport coupe production: 116,580
Monte Carlo Landau sport coupe V-6
RPO: Z37
WB: 108.1
CW: not available
BP: $6,772 Monte Carlo Landau sport coupe V-8
RPO: Z37
WB: 108.1
CW: not available
BP: $6,852
Total Monte Carlo Landau sport coupe production: 32,262

1980 Engine Availability 229-c.i.d. standard w/V-6 models
Type: V-6
BxS: 3.74x3.48
BHP: 115
231-c.i.d. optional w/V-6 models
Type: V-6
BxS: 3.80x3.40
BHP: 110
231-c.i.d. optional w/V-6 models
Type: V-6 turbocharged
BxS: 3.80x3.40
BHP: 170 267-c.i.d. standard w/V-8 models
Type: V-8
BxS: 3.50x3.48
BHP: 120
305-c.i.d. optional w/V-8 models
Type: V-8
BxS: 3.74x3.48
BHP: 155

1981 Monte Carlo
Note: This was the first major "reskin" of the third generation Monte Carlo. This same body style would remail until 1988.

Monte Carlo sport coupe V-6
RPO: Z37
WB: 108.1
CW: 3,102
BP: $7,299
Monte Carlo sport coupe V-8
RPO: Z37
WB: 108.1
CW: 3,228
BP: $7,349
Total Monte Carlo sport coupe production: 149,659
Monte Carlo Landau sport coupe V-6
RPO: Z37
WB: 108.1
CW: not available
BP: $8,006
Monte Carlo Landau sport coupe V-8
RPO: Z37
WB: 108.1
CW: not available
BP: $8,056
Total Monte Carlo Landau sport coupe production: 38,191

1981 Engine Availability 229-c.i.d. standard w/V-6 models
Type: V-6
BxS: 3.74x3.48
BHP: 110 231-c.i.d. optional w/V-6 models
Type: V-6
BxS: 3.80x3.40
BHP: 110 231-c.i.d. optional w/V-6 models
Type: V-6 turbocharged
BxS: 3.80x3.40
BHP: 170
267-c.i.d. standard w/V-8 models
Type: V-8
BxS: 3.50x3.48
BHP: 115
305-c.i.d. optional w/V-8 models
Type: V-8
BxS: 3.74x3.48
BHP: 150

1982 Monte Carlo
Monte Carlo sport coupe V-6
RPO: Z37
WB: 108.1
CW: 3,190
BP: $8,177
Monte Carlo sport coupe V-8
RPO: Z37
WB: 108.1
CW: not available
BP: $8,247
Total Monte Carlo sport coupe production: 92,392

1982 Engine Availability 229-c.i.d. standard w/V-6 model Type: V-6 BxS: 3.74x3.48 BHP: 110 262-c.i.d. optional w/V-6 model Type: V-6 diesel BxS: 3.80x3.40 BHP: 85 267-c.i.d. standard w/V-8 modelType: V-8 BxS: 3.50x3.48 BHP: 115 305-c.i.d. optional w/V-8 model
Type: V-8
BxS: 3.74x3.48
BHP: 150 350-c.i.d. optional w/V-8 model
Type: V-8 diesel
BxS: 4.06x3.39
BHP: 105

1983 Monte Carlo Monte Carlo sport coupe V-6 RPO: Z37 WB: 108.1 CW: 3,220 BP: $8,552 Monte Carlo sport coupe V-8 RPO: Z37 WB: 108.1 CW: 3,328 BP: $8,777
Total Monte Carlo sport coupe production: 91,605
Monte Carlo SS sport coupe V-8
RPO: Z37/Z65
WB: 108.1
CW: not available
BP: $10,474
PR: 4,714

1983 Engine Availability 229-c.i.d. standard w/V-6 model Type: V-6 BxS: 3.74x3.48 BHP: 110 262-c.i.d. optional w/V-6 model Type: V-6 diesel BxS: 3.80x3.40 BHP: 85 305-c.i.d. standard w/V-8 model Type: V-8 BxS: 3.74x3.48 BHP: 150
305-c.i.d. H.O. standard w/SS model
Type: V-8
BxS: 3.74x3.48
BHP: 180
350-c.i.d. optional w/V-8 model
Type: V-8 diesel
BxS: 4.06x3.39
BHP: 105 1984 Monte Carlo

Monte Carlo sport coupe V-6 RPO: Z37 WB: 108.1 CW: 3,176 BP: $8,936 Monte Carlo sport coupe V-8 RPO: Z37 WB: 108.1 CW: 3,292 BP: $9,311
Total Monte Carlo sport coupe production: 112,730
Monte Carlo SS sport coupe V-8
RPO: Z37/Z65
WB: 108.1
CW: 3,434
BP: $10,700
PR: 24,050

1984 Engine Availability 229-c.i.d. standard w/V-6 model Type: V-6 BxS: 3.74x3.48 BHP: 110 305-c.i.d. standard w/V-8 model Type: V-8 BxS: 3.74x3.48 BHP: 150 305-c.i.d. H.O. standard w/SS model
Type: V-8
BxS: 3.74x3.48
BHP: 180 350-c.i.d. optional w/V-8 model
Type: V-8 diesel
BxS: 4.06x3.39
BHP: 105

1985 Monte Carlo Monte Carlo sport coupe V-6 RPO: Z37 WB: 108.0 CW: 3,139 BP: $9,540 Monte Carlo sport coupe V-8RPO: Z37 WB: 108.0 CW: 3,245 BP: $9,780
Total Monte Carlo sport coupe production: 82,573
Monte Carlo SS sport coupe V-8
RPO: Z37/Z65
WB: 108.0
CW: 3,385
BP: $11,380
PR: 35,484

1985 Engine Availability 262-c.i.d. standard w/V-6 model Type: V-6 BxS: 4.00x3.48 BHP: 130
305-c.i.d. standard w/V-8 model
Type: V-8
BxS: 3.74x3.48
BHP: 150 305-c.i.d. H.O. standard w/SS model
Type: V-8
BxS: 3.74x3.48
BHP: 180

1986 Monte Carlo
Monte Carlo sport coupe V-6
RPO: Z37
WB: 108.0
CW: 3,138
BP: $10,241
Monte Carlo sport coupe V-8
RPO: Z37
WB: 108.0
CW: 3,244
BP: $10,631
Total Monte Carlo sport coupe production: 50,418
Monte Carlo LS sport coupe V-6
RPO: Z37/Z09
WB: 108.0
CW: 3,138
BP: $10,421
Monte Carlo LS sport coupe V-8
RPO: Z76/Z09
WB: 108.0
CW: not available
BP: $10,841
Total Monte Carlo LS sport coupe production: 27,428
Monte Carlo SS sport coupe V-8
RPO: Z37/Z65
WB: 108.0
CW: 3,387
BP: $12,466
PR: 41,164
Monte Carlo SS Aerocoupe V-8
RPO: Z37/Z65
WB: 108.0
CW: 3,440
BP: $14,191
PR: 200

1986 Engine Availability 262-c.i.d. standard w/V-6 models Type: V-6 BxS: 4.00x3.48 BHP: 140 305-c.i.d. standard w/V-8 models
Type: V-8
BxS: 3.74x3.48
BHP: 150 305-c.i.d. H.O. standard w/SS models
Type: V-8
BxS: 3.74x3.48
BHP: 180

1987 Monte Carlo Monte Carlo LS sport coupe V-6 RPO: Z37 WB: 108.0 CW: 3,283 BP: $11,306 Monte Carlo LS sport coupe V-8 RPO: Z37 WB: 108.0 CW: 3,389 BP: $11,746 Monte Carlo SS sport coupe V-8 RPO: Z37/Z65 WB: 108.0 CW: 3,473 BP: $13,463
Total Monte Carlo LS and SS sport coupe production: 72,993
Monte Carlo SS Aerocoupe V-8
RPO: Z37/Z16
WB: 108.0
CW: 3,526
BP: $14,838
PR: 6,052

1987 Engine Availability 262-c.i.d. standard w/V-6 LS model Type: V-6 BxS: 4.00x3.48 BHP: 140 305-c.i.d. standard w/V-8 LS model
Type: V-8
BxS: 3.74x3.48
BHP: 150
305-c.i.d. H.O. standard w/SS models
Type: V-8
BxS: 3.74x3.48
BHP: 180

1988 Monte Carlo Monte Carlo LS sport coupe V-6 RPO: Z37 WB: 108.0 CW: 3,212 BP: $12,330 Monte Carlo LS sport coupe V-8 RPO: Z37 WB: 108.0 CW: 3,267 BP: $12,770
Total Monte Carlo LS sport coupe production: 13,970
Monte Carlo SS sport coupe V-8
RPO: Z37/Z65
WB: 108.0
CW: 3,239
BP: $14,320
PR: 16,204

1988 Engine Availability 262-c.i.d. Standard w/v-6 ls model Type: V-6 BxS: 4.00x3.48BHP: 140
305-c.i.d. standard w/V-8 LS model
Type: V-8
BxS: 3.74x3.48
BHP: 150
305-c.i.d. H.O. standard w/SS model
Type: V-8
BxS: 3.74x3.48
BHP: 180

  • «
  • |
  • 1
  • |
  • 2
  • |
  • 3
  • |
  • 4
  • |
  • View Full Article