1966 Chevrolet Corvair Monza With A Rear-Mounted Engine

This 1966 Chevrolet Corvair Monza hardtop received an engine transplant. The engine bay was moved from the front to the rear and a Chevy 350 was mounted in it. The builder who did the transplant probably did it just to prove he can.

It is an unusual build, to say the least, but that doesn’t mean that the engine transplant was a failure. It offers a different but fun driving experience. A stock Monza has a curb weight of about 2,500 lbs. and the Chevy 350 produces more power and torque compared to the standard Corvair flat six even with a turbo charge.

The engine transplant was completed through an SBC conversion using a completely solid and rust-free Monza from California. The builder who did the conversion is unknown but he is surely skilled enough to successfully do such an unconventional build. It is also unknown as for when the conversion was done. Little is also known about the origin and condition of the 350 engine. There is no info if the engine is made of cast iron or not, which would probably useful to determine the weight distribution of this Monza. The 350 is significantly heavier than the Corvair flat six and the rear axle was not originally designed to handle all of that weight so the builder probably reinforced the rear to handle all of that added weight without messing up the handling.


What probably makes this build unconventional is that the Small Block Chevrolet conversion kit does not include Corvair V8 conversions. Although there are conversion kits that allow a large Chevy V8 engine to be mounted on the small bodied Porches such as the mid-engine Porsche 914, and those conversions are more common than people think.

Corvairs that have been modified to support powerful V8 engines do exist but every one of them have the engine up front. This rear mounted Corvair is probably the only one in existence. The engine bay now features a radiator to cool the large Chevy engine. Originally, Corvair was simply air-cooled which would not have been enough for its new found power.

But based on the looks, this Monza comes in a bright red finish with wide black racing stripes that extends from the front hood to the trunk in the rear. It has a great stance and rides on Boyd Coddington chrome wheels on all fours.

Overall, this Monza presents in a great condition and runs smoothly without any hitch. The powerful V8 engine is matched by a 4-speed manual transmission. Other features include leather upholstery and a complete factory instrument cluster. Purist will surely not like this build but the automobile community is huge, so surely there will be more than a handful of people that will love to test out this unique Monza.


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