I have a 67 el camino malibu with a three speed column shift 396 engine. How many were made?

Asked by Feb 13, 2019 at 01:48 PM about the 1967 Chevrolet El Camino

Question type: General

1 Answer

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We had a Chevy dealership in the family up into the "90s, and I built racing engines from 1965 to 1970, while in college. I'm not 100% certain, but as I recall, the 3-speed Saginaw transmission was available only with the I6 and 283 V8 engines. It might have been available with the 250 ho 327 (as with the full size Chevys), but I've never seen one, nor would I expect one to hold up to the added torque of the 396; you'd continually blow synchro's, and their snap rings are a pain to install. The 396 was available with the standard 3-speed Turbo Hydramatic automatic, or the Muncie M-20 base 4-speed stick. The only upgrade was the M-21 transmission. As you have a column shifter, I believe you have an original car that was not a 396. This can be problematic, as the front suspension was strengthened to carry the extra weight of the Rat motor. You should check this out with Chevrolet, Chevelle, or El Camino car clubs. You might look up on-line VIN decoding sites, but for "67, you can only find whether it was a 6 or 8 cylinder that was put into your car, and the VIN won't tell you which transmission. If the car hasn't been messed up too much, you might find a production sheet under the carpet; they weren't meant to remain with the car, but a lot of them were. This will list all the options included in assembly..... If it's an original 396, I can't imagine how much work it would be to put in a column with a shifter for the 3-speed stick, or why anyone would do it. So if you have additional documentation beyond the VIN that says 396, you "might" have an original 3-speed stick. But again, I've never heard of this combination. Good luck.

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