How Many SS396's Based On Body Style Were Sold?

For the model years 1966 through 1968, this is easy since the SS396 was a separate series all its own.  The 1966 and 1967 model years were either series numbers 13817 for the sport coupe or 13867 for the convertible. For 1968 ONLY, the SS396 El Camino had its own series as well (13880) while the sport coupe body style changed from a "17" designation to a "37" designation while the convertible retained its "67" designation.

For 1969 and 1970 model years the SS396 Equipment became an option so there is no way to tell by either the Fisher Body Number plate (a.k.a. trim tag, cowl tag, firewall tag) or the VIN. The 1969 model year was unique in that the SS396 Equipment option could be ordered on any Malibu sport coupe, convertible, or pickup (13637, 13667, or 13680) but could also be ordered on both the 300 Deluxe coupe (13427) and 300 Deluxe sport coupe (13437) series as well. For 1970 the SS396 option was relegated to the Malibu sport coupe, convertible, and pickup.

Chevrolet did not keep, or at least did not release, information on how many of any particular body style were sold with what specific options in 1969 and 1970. So, there is no known figure on how many of the 86,307 1969 or 53,599 1970 Chevelles were ordered in what series and/or body styles. The same applies to how many H.D. 4-speeds, close ratio 4-speeds, base 4-speeds, Positraction, vinyl tops, radios, etc., there are no records showing a breakdown by particular body style or in combination with other options.

How many of a individual option and what series and/or body styles they were available in is known for regular production options; combinations of any two or more options are not. Exterior paint colors sold were a choice the consumer made and not technically an option so even the overall number of red/blue/green/etc. Chevelles, Chevy II, or Corvettes is not known. Toss in an unknown number  with RPO ZP3 special order paint, and you now have an unknown to factor in. While something simple like the number of Chevelles sold with bucket seats (RPO A51) is known for a given year, the colors of those seats and the body styles they were installed in is not known and it's not known how many went into 136xx Malibus or 138xx SS396 series or how many went to sport coupes, convertibles, or pickups.

Many of these 1-of-xx figures come from an appealing and colorful production poster by Chevelle enthusiast Dan Carr. This poster has production figures for 1968 to 1972 Chevelles and Dan breaks down the figures in a very unbiased way (mathematically) in an attempt to show how many of a body style would, statistically, have been ordered with various SS and non-SS specific options; mainly which SS package, transmission types and cowl induction hoods for 1970 through 1972. With Dan's permission the following excerpt from his explanation on how certain figures were determined is presented here.

The same methodology applied to any option like the LS6 engine can be applied to the SS396 option (in 1969 and 1970) as well. First you must calculate the percentage of a given body style the option could be ordered against the entire production number for a given year. Then take that percentage times the number of SS396 options sold. For example, in 1969 the total number of series/body styles the SS396 could be ordered is 346,406 Chevelles (total of all the possible series/body styles).

1969
13427 - 5,620 units
13437 - 7,181 units
13637 - 286,162 units
13667 - 8,443 units
13680 - 39,000 units

1970
13637 - 289,622 units
13667 - 7,141 units
13680 - 41,057 units *

For example, if one takes the number of 1969 13427 300 Deluxe coupes (5,620) and applies it to the total Chevelles possible to have ordered the SS396 option (346,406) one finds the 13427 300 Deluxe coupe is about 1.62% of the total possible to have been ordered with the SS396 option in 1969. Now take that 1.62% of the number of SS396 options sold (86,307) and one gets 1,400 possibilities so one could conclude, mathematically, that there were 1,400 1969 300 Deluxe coupes built in 1969.

1969
Series/Body Style Total Possible Percentage Total SS396 Mathematically Possible
13427 300 Deluxe coupe 5,620 346,406 1.62% 86,307 1,400
13437 300 Deluxe sport coupe 7,181 346,406 2.07% 86,307 1,789
13637 Malibu sport coupe 286,162 346,406 82.61% 86,307 71,297
13667 Malibu convertible 8,443 346,406 2.44% 86,307 2,104
13680 Malibu pickup 39,000 346,406 11.26% 86,307 9,717
1970
Series/Body Style Total Possible Percentage Total SS396 Mathematically Possible
13637 Malibu sport coupe 289,622 337,820 85.73% 53,599 45,952
13667 Malibu convertible 7,141 337,820 2.11% 53,599 1,133
13680 Malibu pickup 41,057 * 337,820 12.15% 53,599 6,514

* Includes 329 known to have been exported to Canada.

Again, it should be stressed that the above "Mathematically Possible" figures are not true production numbers. They represent a percentage distribution of SS396 options distributed equally based on the number of a particular series/style for a given year.