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Technical Information
Is it a Real SS?

The 1970 Monte Carlo brochure reads as follows for the SS454 model:

“Monte Carlo SS454 includes a 360-hp Turbo-Jet 454 V8, Automatic Level Control, G70 x 15 wide-oval white stripe tires with 7”-wide rim wheels, heavy duty chassis components and SS exterior identification.”

This page is to provide information about the First Generation Monte Carlo SS.

The Monte Carlo SS454 was only made in 1970 and 1971.  The 1970 SS could be distinguished from a non-SS Monte Carlo by the emblems on the lower fenders of each side.

ss_emblem2.JPG (17777 bytes)

In 1971 the SS added additional markings on the rear of the car.  This included having the "BY CHEVROLET" tag replaced by "SS", chrome strips added to the top of the rear panel below the trunk, the rear panel painted black and a rubber bumper pad.

71SSback.JPG (10771 bytes)

These emblems are the only way to tell an SS Monte Carlo from the outside. 

The best way to check to see if a car is a real SS is the build sheet.  The build sheet will have the Z20 option listed - Monte Carlo SS.  There is no indication of the SS option in the VIN or data plates on U.S. built Monte Carlos. Canadian built 1970 and 1971 SS454 Monte Carlos will have the Z20 code on the cowl tag. See the GM Restoration Packet page for a Canadian built 1971 SS454 option list.

buildsht.JPG (12557 bytes)

All SS Monte Carlos in '70 and '71 were 454s and all 454s in '70 and '71 were SS cars.  So, if there is a numbers matching 454 in the car, that is a good indication it is a real SS.  The VIN should match the serial number on the engine.  The engine serial number is usually found on the machined surface of the block just forward of the right cylinder head.  It may also be found on a pad on hte side of the block near the oil filter.  The serial number will start with "CRN" for '70 and "CPD" for '71.

All SS’s definitely have:

1. Automatic Level Control

G67 - Automatic Level Control – compressor under the hood, leveling valve mounted on rear, air shocks and air shock protector plates on rear.

The compressor is mounted on the inside of the left inner fender. 

compressor.jpg (17108 bytes)

The leveling valve in mounted on the body and attaches to the left rearend control arm.

SS Leveling valve

The shock protector plates are bolted to the rear just inboard of the lower shock mounts.

shock_plates.jpg (15297 bytes)

Also look for the black plastic air line along the left frame rail.  The line was held in place with clips on the brake lines.

2. Rims and Wheel Covers

Either the PH1 - 7”  x 15” rims with wheel covers (1970 only) or the ZJ7– 7" x 15" Rally wheels (1971 standard 1970 optional). '70 SS pictured below with the wheel covers.

PattonsSS.JPG (16902 bytes)

3. 454 Engine

LS5 - 454 V8 – 360hp (no proof of the LS-6 450 hp cars – but we’re hoping…)

ss_engine2a.JPG (29112 bytes)

4. Turbo Hydromatic 400 Transmission

M40 – TH400 automatic transmission

5. White Stripe Tires

P90 – G70 x 15 white stripe tires

6. Heavy Duty Battery

T60 – HD battery

7. Front and Rear Sway Bars

F41 - Front and Rear anti-sway bars - the front sway bar is 1-1/8" diameter (standard is         15/16" diameter). There is also a plate welded to the bottom of the rear control arms ("boxed"  control arms).

8. Dual Exhaust

N10 – dual exhaust - same tips as SS Chevelle


No SS’s have:

1. Fender Skirts

T58 - fender skirts (due to the 7” wide rims)

2. Manual Transmission

M20 – 4 speed transmission – (no proof yet of any in existence, show us your build sheet)

3. LS6 Engine

LS6- 450 hp 454 – please prove me wrong, until then…

4. Convertible Top

Convertible roof – again, no documented proof, lots of tales though…


An SS may have:

1. Rally Wheels

ZJ7 - Rally Wheels  - 7” x 15” (again, standard in '71, optional in '70)

2. Center Console

D55 - console - NOT part of the SS package, if it is present it should have the burlwood top that matches the dash.

3. Bucket Seats

A51 - Bucket Seats - NOT part of SS package, some SS454 cars were built with bench seats.

4. Positraction Rear End

G80 - 12 bolt positraction rear – 2.56 was the standard ratio for the 70 SS and the 3.31 was the standard ratio for the 71.

5. Special Gage Package

U14 - Gage Package - NOT part of the SS package, SS cars may have warning lights instead.

6. Power Steering

N40 - Power Steering - not all SS cars had it.

This page is maintained by Dave Mau and Leo Konik.  If you have any information, comments or questions, please contact Dave or Leo.  Some of the photos above were obtained from various sources.  We have attempted to contact the owner of each photo but we were still was not able to contact everyone.  If we have used one of your photos and you wish to have it removed, please let us know and we will do so immediately.