Wendall’s 1963 Nova

Built From The Ground Up

Wendall’s 1963 Nova

This 1963 Nova is neither Chevy II nor Corvette, Wendall A’s “Novette II” is in a class all by itself!

What exactly is a Novette? It is a 1963 Nova hardtop body on a 1993 Corvette chassis. So this car not only has a timeless look, it can also handle better than most new cars!

On behalf of his shy brother Wendall, Cecil A. tells us the story of how the Novette came to be:

This was a seven year project (there was an interruption for his Cancer recovery). Wendell performed ALL the necessary modifications himself to merge the two vehicles together in his own “hobby shop” at home. Ok…he had a friend rebuild the trans.

He also asked a pro bender to form the custom Aluminized 3″ exhaust as his manual bender wasn’t large enough to accommodate it. Wendell also “redefined” the 1963 Nova body to accept the 17″ Corvette rims by hand forming each fender opening in steel. NO “bondo” was used, only filler-primer. A recessed gas filler & lid were also added to clean up the precise body lines.

The color is, of course, Corvette Torch Red. The posterior containment (front & rear seats) were retrofitted from a `97 Saturn coupe. At present, the instrumentation is stock including a factory tachometer (he’s toying with using Dakota Digital to gain better telemetry).

The front & rear suspension as well as the drive train (700R4 trans w/B&M floor shifter) including power brake system speak native Corvette. The only exception is a fresh ZZ4 350 crate engine. (The air filter was Cecil’s contribution, a Polymer rendition of a `84 Vette intake box.)

Cecil’s main reason for sending us the story about the 1963 Nova was to encourage other customers to GO FOR IT.

Wendell has no special mechanical or engineering training outside of his body & finder career, and he used the simplest of “out dated” shop equipment to make it happen. The latter years of the project became vary therapeutic in his overcoming “C” factor. This story proves that if you really put your mind and heart into it, you can accomplish any project.

Ground Up Parts Featured In This Build

1964-1979 Nova B&M Universal Megashifter Automatic Shifter: 80690

Part #: BM-80690
b&m megashifter


You Save: 10%

1962-1964 Nova Headlamp Bezels

Part #: KHB-2210
1962-1964 nova headlamp bezels


Best Price Available

1963-1965 Nova Instrument Cluster Bezel

Part #: ICB-6365
instrument cluster bezel


You Save: 22%

1962-1965 Nova Door Handle Kit Trim Parts GM Licensed

Part #: MPX-3013
door handle kit


Best Price Available

Shop our huge selection of Nova Parts!

1962-1979 Nova Parts

We want to see your Built From The Ground Up Ride!

Submit your car to be featured here!

Share this car with your friends!

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on email

More Articles From Ground Up SS396.com

lee-s 1972 nova pro street
1972 Nova

Lee’s 1972 Nova

Lee was 60 years old when he started his 1972 Nova pro street car and he finished the car in just three years. This Nova features a 468 big block

Read More »
Lee's 72 Nova SS Clone
1972 Nova

Lee’s 1972 Nova SS Clone

Lee had his first Nova, a true 1969 Nova SS, about 25 years ago. A beautiful car she was, and this 1972 Nova is a tribute to it. Unfortunately, life

Read More »
Al G's 72 Nova
1972 Nova

Al G’s 1972 Nova

When Al G. was just 16 years old he had a 1971 Nova, so he wanted to look for something similar. When Al stumbled across this 1972 Nova in the

Read More »
robert t's 1972 nova
1972 Nova

Robert T’s 1972 Nova

Robert had owned a 1968 and 1969 Camaro in the early 1990s, but he had always loved the body styling of the 1968-1972 Novas. He had found this example of

Read More »