Video: 1971 Bowtie Wagons Made Passenger Cars Cool
Clearly, Chevy was already on the advance of station wagon design by 1958 when they introduced their Biscayne based, Brookwood station wagon. For that model year, the mid priced Brookwood was offered exclusively as a four door with such available color schemes as the “Aegean” and “Tropic Turquoise” two tone.
By ’59 however, Chevy made Biscayne their least expensive series by completely dropping the entry level Delray from the lineup. This left the Brookwood as Chevy’s least expensive station wagon, but the wagon was now available in two or four door versions, with the two door becoming the basis for the ’59 El Camino.
The formation of the first El Camino in the late ’50s wasn’t the only design benchmark introduced through Chevy’s station wagon lineup. The “Brookwood” name was dropped for 1962, and by the ’69 sales year Chevy’s wagons ranged from the now least expensive Brookwood to the Kingswood Estate models.
As our Bowtie wagon commercial from 1971 shows, station wagons in the Chevy tradition evoked a sense of style while maintaining functionality. For the ’71 sales year, Chevy station wagons could be ordered with such amenities as a “vanishing” tailgate and a walk-in, two way tailgate for the midsized Chevelle versions.
The full sized and Chevelle wagons could be ordered with a luggage rack, and the two way tailgate on the Chevelle made it easy to step right into the car’s seating space. Also unique to the ’71 wagons was the louvered tailgate, as this was the only production year that featured it.
Station wagons weren’t always so “cool,” but Chevy made strides even in the ’70s to change the image of the utilitarian car. We seem to dig on older wagons. Will we ever see a wagon with the Chevrolet bow tie again?