Cohort Outtake: 1976 Chevrolet El Camino Club Cab – Tax Evasion Special

Chevy El Camino 1976 club coupe side

T.Minor posted these pics taken by Ofer Paz of a five-seater El Camino in Israel. And why would anyone bother to do this, instead of say just buying a Malibu coupe? It’s not for the cargo-hauling ability. T.Minor explains: 

Chevy El Camino 1976 club coupe rq

This is Israel’s version of the “Chicken Tax” – sort of. These El Caminos were at the time considered as commercial vehicles and were taxed very low, so people used them as a cheap way to get a US-made car (still desirable at the time). It did not matter for the purpose of tax law whether it was a two or five seater, hence the obvious modification. Later the administration caught up to this and changed the law so it made no sense to modify these.

Chevy El Camino 1976 club coupe fq

Thanks for the explanation; makes perfect sense. Now there’s one more thing that needs explanation: how come the Chevy bowtie on the front grille is bigger than every other ’76 El Camino that I can find images of?

Chevy El Camino 1976 wiki

It’s a minor point, but I notice silly little stuff like this. Was there a tax break for that too?