Can you tell 1960s Chevys from 1960s Fords?


By: Bambi Turner

6 Min Quiz

Image: sv1ambo via Wiki Commons

About This Quiz

Can you tell an Impala from a Galaxie, or an early Mustang from a first-generation Camaro? Do you remember what a Corvair looked like, or a Falcon, and which brand made each model?

We’ve assembled a collection of photos of 1960s vehicles from both brands. Each had its own unique style in that decade, although one could argue there were some similarities here and there. If you think you know 1960s Fords from Chevys like you know coffee from tea or beer from wine, then put your memory and skill to the test by taking this quiz. 

The 1960s was a time of bold automotive design, huge showroom successes and experimentation that produced a plethora of eye-catching models and memorable driving experiences. Both Chevrolet and Ford pushed the envelope to capture a greater share of the market, developing vehicles that included new mid-size entries, sporty coupes, “personal luxury” models and, of course, muscle cars. Pickup trucks, too, began to offer more style and comfort.

So, here goes. Glance at each photo and tells us whether the vehicle you see is a Chevy or a Ford. After your selection, you’ll learn a bit of history about each model, some of it surprising. 

After taking the quiz, forward it to friends to see if any can beat your score.

Good luck, and have fun!

Is this full-size car a Ford or a Chevy?

The Caprice began as a luxury trim option on the Chevrolet Impala in 1965 before it became an independent model. A 1967 model is shown.


What brand is this sport coupe?

Yup, it’s another Mustang. This one is a 1967 High Country Special, a regional special edition Ford created for Colorado dealers. It was just a cosmetic upgrade in conjunction with blue, green and gold exterior colors. All told, fewer than 1,000 were sold from 1966-1968.


This was a best-seller in its day ... but from Ford or Chevy?

As baseball legend Yogi Berra once said, “It’s déjà vu all over again.” Here’s yet another 1964 Chevy full-size model, this time the Impala. Named for an African antelope, the Impala appeared in 1958 as a sporty upscale model. Afterward, the badge identified the top-line Chevy until the Caprice arrived for 1965 (first as an option on the Impala).


Ford or Chevy?

Ford’s Mustang started the pony car segment when it came out in 1964 (as a 1965 model), with a price tag of just around $2,400. A redesign for 1967 (shown) gave the Mustang a bolder look, and it was slightly larger, too.


This should be easy ... Ford or Chevy?

It’s the Chevy Corvette, of course, a Sting Ray model from the C3 series (also known as third generation) made from 1963-1967. This is a 1966 model customized with a hood scoop from a ’67 version.


You know this one, right?

Ford was ready to celebrate when the 1965 Mustang, introduced in April 1964, was chosen as the pace car for that year’s Indianapolis 500 race. To mark the occasion, the company produced 185 replica hardtops, all white with blue and white interiors, complete with pace car logos.


Go on, you must know who made this muscled-up sports car. Who made it?

It’s a 1969 Chevy Corvette, nicknamed “Astrovette” that Chevrolet leased to NASA astronauts for $1 per year. The odd paint scheme on this one reveals that it’s one of three that went to the crew of Apollo 12, which traveled to the moon in November 1969.


Do you know which company made this car?

Chevrolet used the Biscayne name for the lowest trim line of its full-size model from 1959-1972, although it shared its chassis and body with the Bel Air and Impala. The car was named for Biscayne Bay in Miami, Florida. This is a 1964 model.


Now we're just playing with you. Go ahead, name this car's maker.

Sure, it’s another first-generation Ford Mustang, but this one is pretty special. It’s a 1966 Anniversary Gold Edition, one of 50 made to celebrate not an anniversary, but the one-millionth Mustang built. The package was largely a selection of popular options combined with Anniversary Gold paint. Few are known to survive.


What's the make of this '60s muscle car?

Chevrolet introduced its Chevelle mid-size model for 1964, and it became popular quickly. The upscale trim line was called Malibu, and a Super Sport option revved up style. For 1965, the first SS 396 muscle car version arrived, and a 1968 redesign gave the car a sleeker look, especially the coupe with its “Coke bottle” shape.


Alright, and who made this wagon?

Chevrolet used the Kingswood name for the middle trim line of its full-size station wagon through the 1960s, below the Kingswood Estate. The latter featured more luxury and imitation exterior wood panel trim. A 1969 Kingswood model is shown.


This was a very popular car in its day. Is it a Chevy or a Ford?

The Malibu started off as a top-of-line trim model on the Chevelle when it was introduced in 1964. A customized 1966 model is shown, wearing the hood from the SS 396 version. The Malibu name continued through 1977, replacing the Chevelle badge completely on the downsized 1978 model.


It's a classic muscle machine, but is it a Chevy or a Ford?

Ford went wild making special performance versions of its Mustang in the late 1960s, including the Mach 1 introduced for 1969 (shown). Others introduced that year were the Boss 302 and Boss 429, along with redesigned Shelby GT350 and GT500 models.


Ford and Chevy both made car/pickup mashups. Whose is this?

Although the idea of a half-car, half-pickup model dated way back to the 1920s, Ford made the concept popular in the U.S. with its Ranchero, introduced in 1957. Three years later, Ford moved the Ranchero model to the compact Falcon platform, boosting its sales. The Ranchero’s only competitor in the U.S. was the Chevrolet El Camino, which outsold and outlasted it in the market.


Surely, you know this one by now.

And now it’s back to Chevy’s Camaro. This is a 1967 model, but without the RS package and its distinctive hidden headlights. The ’68 looked pretty much the same but added side marker directional lights in the fenders, deleted the front vent windows and had rectangular rather than round directional signals in the grille.


Another pickup, another brand to identify ... Ford or Chevy?

The 1969 Ford F-100 Contractor Special pickup came equipped with heavy-duty suspension, oversize swing-out mirrors and offered an under-hood generator to provide jobsite power.


And finally, name the brand of this high-powered muscle coupe.

What's better than a 1969 Camaro? How about one souped up by a racecar driver? In 1967 and 1968, racer and Chevrolet dealer Don Yenko was one of several Chevy dealers to swap out the Camaro’s optional and already potent 396 cubic-inch “big block” V8 for the Corvette’s 425-horsepower 427 cubic-inch version. For 1969, Yenko and other dealers were able to special-order the 427 engine installed in Camaros right at the factory through Chevy's Central Office Production Order (COPO) program. Yenko would then add his own stripes, “Stinger” hood and “Yenko Super Car” graphics.


This one was very sporty, but was it a Chevy or a Ford?

Chevrolet introduced its Camaro sport coupe for 1967 as a response to Ford’s astoundingly successful the Mustang. The optional Rally Sport (RS) package added a special front grille with hidden headlights, slightly different taillights, interior upgrades and RS badges. The RS package could also be combined with the SS and Z/28 performance option packages.


Do you know if this car is a Ford or a Chevy?

Ford manufactured the mid-sized Torino from 1968 to 1976. Named for the city of Torino, Italy, the car started as an upscale trim package on the Fairlane before it was made into an independent model in the ’70s.


What brand made this little car?

Chevy’s Corvair compact was pretty radical when introduced for 1960. The “air” in its name was for an air-cooled, rear-mounted flat-six engine, several years before Porsche introduced the 911 model with a similar configuration. Chevy offered the Corvair in sedan, coupe, convertible and wagon styles, along with a sporty Monza trim line (shown). The wagon was dropped in a major 1965 redesign.


In the '60s, you'd see this utility van everywhere. Did Ford or Chevrolet make it?

Introduced in 1961, Ford’s Econoline was a “forward control” van, meaning the steering wheel was ahead of the front wheels. The Econoline’s inline-six-cylinder engine was located between the front seats under a cover, a configuration copied a few years later in vans from Chevrolet and Dodge.


Think you can identify this convertible?

Chevrolet’s Chevy II was a simple compact when it came out for 1962, offering an upscale trim level called Nova. A year after the model was redesigned for 1968, the “Chevy II” portion of the name was dropped, and all versions were called Nova.


This pickup has room for the whole crew. Is it a Chevy or a Ford?

You’ll probably recognize this one from about nine questions back. It’s a Ford F-series pickup from the 1960s, but this one is the 1965 heavy-duty F-250 crew cab. In 1965, the F-series got an all-new frame with Ford’s “Twin I-Beam” independent front suspension.


Did Chevrolet or Ford make this brawny-looking muscle car?

Ford introduced the Fairlane-based Cobra for 1969. This mid-size muscle car was powered by a standard 428 Cobra Jet V8 making a conservatively rated 335 horsepower. For 1970, the model was redesigned and carried the Torino Cobra name.


Was this coupe from Chevy or Ford?

Inspired by Henry Ford's own Fair Lane estate in Michigan, the Fairlane name was used on a series of Fords from 1955-1970, starting out on large cars and then moving to a new mid-size model in 1962. (A 1963 model is shown.)


Know which company made this car?

Chevrolet used the Townsman name on its deluxe wagon model in the 1950s, retiring it in 1957. In 1969, the Townsman name returned for three years as a trim line between the low-line Brookwood and deluxe Kingswood. A 1970 model is shown.


Chevrolet or Ford ... which carmaker built this sporty little car?

The 1960-1970 Ford Falcon was available in sedan, coupe, wagon and convertible models. The huge success of this compact Ford was partially due to ads featuring Charlie Brown and the rest of the Peanuts gang through 1965. (A 1964 model is shown.) For 1966, a major redesign gave the Falcon a larger, boxier body.


Do you know whether this '60s pickup is a Ford or Chevy?

Ford introduced the fourth-generation of the F-series pickup in 1960. This generation was the first half-ton F-100 to sport a Ranger option, complete with bucket seats. A 1967 remodel resulted in an F-100 that was wider and heavier, with more trim and options.


Which brand's name would you expect to see on this station wagon?

Ford inexplicably called the middle trim line of its full-size wagon “Country Sedan” in the 1960s and 1970s. Below it was the Ranch Wagon, and above it was the better equipped Country Squire, complete with imitation wood exterior trim. A 1967 Country Sedan is shown


Which auto maker made this rugged off-road SUV?

Ford introduced the compact Bronco SUV in 1966 as a competitor to the Jeep CJ-5 and International Harvester Scout. A redesign in 1978, based on the F-Series pickup, made the Bronco larger and more competitive with the Chevy Blazer.


Which auto maker built this '60s classic?

Inspired by the burgeoning space age, Ford introduced the Galaxie name (intentionally misspelled) for 1959, using it on full-size models until 1974. Upscale versions were called Galaxie 500, XL and LTD, the latter eventually becoming its own distinct model and replacing the Galaxie altogether.


Now, name the brand that made this pickup.

And here’s another look at the Ford F-series’ key competitor, the Chevrolet C/K pickup from the mid-1960s. A “C” badge designated rear-wheel drive, while a “K” indicated four-wheel drive.


Is this pickup from Ford or Chevy?

Chevy produced its beloved C/K line of pickups from 1960-2000 before replacing the line with the Silverado. The C-10 (shown) was a half-ton truck. The “C” designated rear-wheel drive, and “K” meant four-wheel drive.


Is this big luxury coupe a Ford or a Chevy?

Introduced in 1955, Ford’s Thunderbird started as a two-seater and famously grew into a larger four-seat coupe for 1958. As competitors appeared by the early 1960s, a subsegment emerged, sometimes called “personal car” or “personal luxury car.” A 1966 Thunderbird is shown. Later models were even bigger.


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