Monte Carlo Aerocoupe was a stock-car racing special

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Once upon a time, the “stock cars” that raced on the NASCAR circuit actually bore a relationship to the vehicles you could buy at a new car dealership. “Win on Sunday, sell on Monday” wasn’t just an advertising tagline. It was a showroom reality.

For the 1986 model year, Chevrolet was among the General Motors divisions benefiting from a more aerodynamic redesign of its NASCAR-eligible cars. For the Monte Carlo (yes, it was a rear-driven vehicle in the ‘80s), the LS trim package included a more aerodynamic nose, flush-mounted headlamps, new mirrors and even stiffer rear suspension components.

But the big change came mid-year with the introduction of the Monte Carlo SS Aerocoupe. This two-door model featured a fastback-style rear window, rear decklid spoiler, and other changes, including revised gauges — with tachometer — and a blacked-out grille. 

However, to make the car eligible for NASCAR, Chevy had to sell at least 200 of the cars to the general public. Only 200 were made, and as howstuffworks.com notes, those 200 “have since become coveted collectors’ items.”

Chevy bumped up production for the 1987 model year, running off more than 3,500 of the SS Aerocoupes, and one of those 1987 Chevrolet Monte Carlo SS Aerocoupes is the Pick of the Day.

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The cockpit

The car is advertised on ClassicCars.com by a collector car specialist dealership in Canton, Ohio, and not only features the Aerocoupe rear window, but also an optional T-top roof that provides driver and front-seat passenger with a convertible-style open-air motoring experience.

The Aerocoupe was a two-year offering only for the 1986 and ’87 model years, and was successful in racing. Dale Earnhardt Sr. won the 1986 and 1987 NASCAR championships driving the Wrangler Jeans (1986) and Goodwrench (1987) Chevrolet Monte Carlos for Richard Childress Racing.

The advertisement is short on details, but notes that the car has a “beautiful original interior” and the car also has its original 305cid V8, automatic transmission, air-conditioning and new tires. It also has power brakes, steering and windows. The car is burgundy in color with matching cloth interior. 

The mileage is listed as 29,966.

“Runs and drives great,” the dealership assures.

The asking price is $22,995.  

To view this listing on ClassicCars.com, see Pick of the Day.

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A former daily newspaper sports editor, Larry Edsall spent a dozen years as an editor at AutoWeek magazine before making the transition to writing for the web and becoming the author of more than 15 automotive books. In addition to being founding editor at ClassicCars.com, Larry has written for The New York Times and The Detroit News and was an adjunct honors professor at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University.

8 COMMENTS

  1. I was a kid when these cars were introduced, and even then a die-hard Ford fan; but I’ll never forget the impression these Aerocoupes made on me then. The fear that Dale Sr struck in the hearts of every other driver when he showed up at Daytona with this car painted in his now familiar black/white/silver paint scheme in 1987 is what made him the Intimidator!

  2. I remember when these cars were new folks didn’t like all that glass in the back of the aerocoupe. new one cost about 12k as I recall. I wish I would have bought that white one instead I bought a 1989 Caprice Brougham LS which I still have

  3. Very nice post! Automotive industry is currently in revolution and these things has actually change the game as you have mentioned here.I must say, these were some quite good updates.Thanks a lot! Keep up the good work as this is going to be very useful.

  4. Chevrolet got to work on the Aerocoupe around the time when Cale Yarborough flipped his notch back Monte Carlo SS at Daytona in 1983 when he laid down a 200+ MPH qualifying effort. That bubble back window funneled air down force on the rear deck and proved to be the fix that the Monte Carlo teams needed as those cars went on to dominate in the 86-87 seasons. Last of the real "stock cars" IMO as the MCSS used a factory front and rear fascia, hood, trunk and windsheild (when teams still used glass ones).

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  8. I own two unusual Monte Carlo Areo Coupes. The first a 1986 that was delivered to the Charlotte Motor Speedway with a group Areo coupes for the race and the drivers were given the car to drive for race week. This car has two window stickers. One for Chevrolet Motor Division Charlotte, N.C., the other Beasley Cross Chevrolet, Kannapolis, N.C. which sold the car to the original owner, from who I bought the car from. This car was sold new with a few hundred miles and were driven by Dale Earnhardt from what I was told. The car is all original with a couple thousand miles. Car two is the Budwiser car that
    Terry Labonie won Winston and many races. This car was bought by Carl Dwiggins from Junior Johnson the following week after its last race. It is as it was raced. This car is in our museum. Thank you. Jimmy Morrison Concord,N.C.

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