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I've noticed two variations of the center console (horseshoe shifter) on automatic transmission-equipped Chevelles in 1970. In one version, the gear indicator (i.e. P - R - N - D - 2 - 1) is on the console itself and the other version has that indicator located at the bottom of the speedometer and the console is blank. Is the latter version part of the available U14 "Special Instrumentation" option or what's the deal?

Thanks in advance for the replies ...
 

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In my SS 396 1970 El Camino, I have the TH400 tranny and the horseshoe shifter with the P,R,N,3,2,1 indicator in the console. My build date is the 4th week of April.
 

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The latter souunds like a column shift setup. Buckets & console could be ordered as they were an option while the bench seat was standard. Is it possible someone wanted a column shift car with buckets & console? Absolutley. There are a couple of scenarios here. Someone (like a GM exec) may have ordered a bucket/console car with floor shift with the indicator on the speedo. Someone at one point in time changed the speedo gauge itself with one from a column shift car. You may have an oddball setup there or someone who simply slapped a set of buckets & console without changing everything over. The U14 special instrumentation are the tach and gauges, nothing to do with the shift indicator setup. Do you have pictures of this you caould send me? I would like to check it out.
 

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Originally posted by BlueSS454:
The latter souunds like a column shift setup. Buckets & console could be ordered as they were an option while the bench seat was standard. Is it possible someone wanted a column shift car with buckets & console? Absolutley. There are a couple of scenarios here. Someone (like a GM exec) may have ordered a bucket/console car with floor shift with the indicator on the speedo. Someone at one point in time changed the speedo gauge itself with one from a column shift car. You may have an oddball setup there or someone who simply slapped a set of buckets & console without changing everything over. The U14 special instrumentation are the tach and gauges, nothing to do with the shift indicator setup. Do you have pictures of this you caould send me? I would like to check it out.
I'll take some pics when I get home. It's definitely an interesting setup. The car was originally a white interior, with bucket seats & center console, and during it's last restoration a black interior was installed. The gear indicator on the speedometer correctly indicates which gear I'm in when I move the horseshoe shifter. The panel on the console where the indicator normally is, is blank. I contacted the previous owner who had the car for the last 20 years or so, and said he only changed the color of the seats and door panels; he says the gear indicator was as I see it now when he bought the car in the early 80's.
 

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Okay, here are the pics -- one of the console and one of the speedometer with the gear indicator. If it is a hybrid of a steering-column shifter setup which has the gear indicator in the speedo, and a console shifter which I guess doesn't normally have the indicator in the speedo, I still like it. It works properly (meaning the gear indicator moves when you move the horseshoe shifter) and is unique. Anyways, as requested here are the photos:



 

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My 71 Buick Skylark GS convertible is like that. Has a factory installed horseshoe console shifter with the indicator in the speedo cluter.
 

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Very interesting! My gut feeling is that this is a home-brewed setup. I don't ever recall seeing such a thing on a Chevelle from the factory. Interesting that the previous owner says it was like that from the early 80's - but that leaves 10 to 14 years or so for someone else to have possibly changed it.
 

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Originally posted by Bill Pritchard:
Very interesting! My gut feeling is that this is a home-brewed setup. I don't ever recall seeing such a thing on a Chevelle from the factory. Interesting that the previous owner says it was like that from the early 80's - but that leaves 10 to 14 years or so for someone else to have possibly changed it.
My wife and I are the 4th owners of the car. The second owner of this Chevelle is the silent partner of the "Corvette Mike" dealership in Southern California and is pretty reputable. He has stated that he did the only restoration on this car, and that it was original prior to the restoration -- including this odd console/gear indicator setup. I guess we won't know for sure unless I can possibly locate a build sheet in the car. :rolleyes: Even still, I don't know whether such an item would even be on the build sheet.
 

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it is a common trait. the stearing colum is for a foor shift . although most consoles will also have the markings on the console above the black backing plate. when you put the car in park it locks the steering wheel. this is why the general built it that way. it does look kool seeing the shift collar move when you shift the horseshoe.
 
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