The Chevy S10 hasn't been in production since the last one rolled off the assembly line in 2004 and has been one of the most highly sought pickups mutilated in the Mini Truckin' custom car scene since its birth in 1982. Seeing this all most perfect specimen on the open road is a rare sight to see.
Chevy introduced the S10 in 1982 just as the demand for compact trucks was growing. It was available only in the standard single cab and six-foot bed but was offered in rear-drive, 4WD, and several trip packages. It was available with standard 1.9L 4-cylinder or V-6 engine. The S10 was slightly larger than the current Luv but smaller than the C10 pickup. The front of the S10 featured two single rectangular headlights with amber corner lights. The grille had three rows of six rectangular segments with the Chevrolet Bow Tie in the center. Some standard features included a four-speed transmission, bench seating, and dual outside rearview mirrors. It was offered in three trim levels: standard, Sport, and topline Durango. There were hundreds of extra dealer options you could add to the S10, such as a chrome front grille for the extra price of $53.
In 1983, Chevy entered its "Year II of a New Era for Chevy Trucks" campaign. To answer the demands of the ever-growing fan base of buyers for the S10, an extra-cab and 7 1/2-foot long-bed alternative was added to the options. The body color featured a two-tone paint scheme. Unfortunately, we were unable to locate what colors were available. Added was a new engine option, a 2.0L 83-hp L-4. The 4WD models were updated with new independent front suspension using computer-matched torsion bars. Base price started at $6496.
The pickup didn't change much in 1984 besides an updated front grille and better rust prevention, but still outsold itself over the previous year. More features and options were added to the growing list. Added to the 4x2 models were sport suspension, new odometer, new ignition wiring buzzers; the cable clutch was replaced with a hydraulic type, and a 2.2L diesel 4x2. The trims featured:
Durango: Color-keyed floormats, courtesy lights, and custom cloth/vinyl bench seats.
Tahoe: Added carpeting, gauges, and a right-hand visor mirror.
Sport Package: Included Tahoe package with Sport steering wheel, sport cloth bucket seats with center console.
Exterior colors: Silver metallic, Forest white, Light blue metallic, Galaxy blue, metallic, Doeskin tan, Indian bronze metallic/Desert Sand metallic, Apple red, Cinnamon red, and Satin black. (I'm going to guess these colors were on the 1982/83 trucks aswell)
For 1985, still no big changes to the model other than the exterior badges were enlarged on the fenders and the Chevrolet logo that ran across the tailgate was replaced with a smaller logo located in the lower corner. A new 2.5L engine with EFI was now standard in the 4x4 model. This year, the two-tone paint schemes separated by the mid-beltline on the truck was introduced to the S10 line.
Little was changed in the terms of cosmetics in 1986, this year featured more technical advancements such as a high-tech instrument cluster, EFI was standard on both 2.5L and 2.8L engines boosting power by nine percent, and optional throttle Body Injection system for the V-6.
The S10 was renamed T10 in 1987 and confused customers resulting in a drop of sales across the truck lineup. The S/T10 featured a makeover.
Can you guess what year the S10 I spotted on the road is?
Sources: "Chevrolet Chronicle" by the Auto Editors of Consumer Guide; "American Light-duty Trucks" edited by James T. Lenzke