1956 Bel Air

Prepare to be captivated by the extraordinary tale of the awe-inspiring ’56 Bel Air, elegantly infused with the raw power of an LS engine. This iconic muscle car, with its timeless design and exhilarating performance, epitomizes the essence of American automotive excellence. From the moment your eyes meet its striking silhouette, it becomes abundantly clear that this meticulously crafted masterpiece is destined to leave an indelible mark on both the hearts of enthusiasts and the annals of automotive history. Brace yourself for an exhilarating journey as we delve into the remarkable world of the LS Powered ’56 Bel Air.

The Story Behind the Car

Dave’s ’56 Bel Air has been in his family for generations. It all began when his grandfather purchased the car brand-new back in the 1960s. Over the years, the car was driven by Dave’s father during his high school years and continued to be passed down within the family. It’s a rare and heartwarming sight to witness a car that has remained in the same family for so long, as it’s a tradition that is becoming increasingly uncommon.

Initial Condition of the Car

When Dave inherited the ’56 Bel Air, it was in a rather ratty condition. The car had been sitting around in various backyards and garages, with its exterior covered in primer and its interior stripped down to the basics. Despite its worn-out appearance, Dave saw the potential in restoring this family heirloom and bringing it back to its former glory.

Dave’s journey with the ’56 Bel Air took a significant turn when he met Ralph from RMD Garage at a local car show. Impressed by Ralph’s expertise and passion for automotive restoration, Dave decided to entrust his beloved Bel Air to RMD Garage for a complete transformation. It was the beginning of a remarkable collaboration between Dave and the skilled team at RMD Garage.

Engine Upgrades

During the restoration of the ’56 Bel Air, the focus extended beyond the engine to the chassis and suspension. The car now sits on a Roaster Shop chassis, providing a solid foundation for improved handling and stability. RMD Garage collaborated with experts from Roaster Shop to ensure that the chassis was tailored to the specific needs of the Bel Air.

Additionally, Wilwood brakes were added, replacing the original ones, to enhance the car’s stopping power and ensure better overall safety on the road.

Inside the car, the attention to detail is evident in the meticulously designed interior. The seats were sourced from a Lexus and then modified to fit the Bel Air, offering both comfort and functionality. The upholstery was custom-made, using high-quality materials, resulting in a sleek and sophisticated look. Modern amenities were integrated into the interior, including air conditioning and a Kicker stereo system, ensuring a comfortable and enjoyable driving experience. The interior also features custom gauges from Classic Industries, further adding to the overall aesthetic appeal of the car.

Chassis and Suspension Enhancements

Dave and the RMD Garage team recognized the importance of enhancing the car’s performance by upgrading the chassis and suspension. They collaborated with Roaster Shop, known for their expertise in chassis fabrication, to achieve the desired results.

The ’56 Bel Air was equipped with a modern Roaster Shop chassis, which provided a solid and reliable foundation for improved handling and overall driving experience. The four-link suspension system further enhanced the car’s control and stability, allowing for a smoother and more enjoyable ride.

By incorporating the expertise of Roaster Shop, Dave and the RMD Garage team ensured that the ’56 Bel Air would have a well-engineered and high-performing chassis and suspension system. These upgrades not only enhance the car’s driving dynamics but also contribute to its overall appeal and value as a classic vehicle. The collaboration between RMD Garage and Roaster Shop highlights the commitment to excellence and attention to detail displayed throughout the restoration process.

Brakes and Wheels

Braking power is essential, especially when dealing with a car that has undergone significant performance upgrades. RMD Garage opted for a Wilwood brake system, installing six-piston calipers for maximum stopping power. To add a touch of style, the calipers were custom-painted to match the car’s design. As for the wheels, they chose Race Line Fugitive wheels, which perfectly complement the Bel Air’s muscular appearance.

Exterior Modifications

RMD Garage dedicated significant effort to refining the exterior of the ’56 Bel Air, aiming to create a sleek and timeless appearance. They carefully removed unnecessary emblems and features, resulting in a cleaner and more elegant look for the car. This process involved meticulous attention to detail, ensuring that every modification contributed to the overall aesthetic.

The transformation of the exterior was further accentuated by a stunning paint job. RMD Garage opted for a custom color combination of Ruby Ice and Vanilla Cream, which added a modern touch to the classic design of the ’56 Bel Air. The chosen colors were carefully selected to complement the car’s lines and contours, enhancing its visual appeal.

In addition to the exterior modifications, RMD Garage paid special attention to the engine bay. Kin Dig covers were installed, providing a polished and finished appearance to the engine compartment. These covers not only served as a stylish addition but also showcased the level of detail and craftsmanship that went into the build of the ’56 Bel Air.

Overall, the exterior modifications performed by RMD Garage transformed the ’56 Bel Air into a stunning and refined classic car. Through careful removal of unnecessary features, the application of a custom paint job, and the installation of Kin Dig covers, the exterior of the car was successfully streamlined while preserving its timeless charm.

Interior Revamp

The interior of the ’56 Bel Air received a remarkable transformation, combining contemporary comfort with the car’s classic aesthetics. RMD Garage sought out custom leather seats from a Lexus, elevating the level of luxury and ensuring a comfortable ride for the occupants. These high-quality seats not only provided superior comfort but also added a touch of sophistication to the interior.

To enhance the overall ambiance, a satin finish was applied to the interior surfaces. This treatment served a dual purpose by reducing glare and creating a refined and polished look. The satin finish accentuated the classic design elements of the ’56 Bel Air while giving the interior a modern and elegant feel.

In terms of functionality, the restoration included the addition of a restomod air conditioning system with custom vents. This upgrade ensured that the interior remained cool and comfortable, even during hot weather. Classic Industries gauges were also installed, providing accurate and stylish instrumentation to monitor the car’s performance.

To pay tribute to the car’s heritage, RMD Garage made sure to retain the Bel Air logo in the rear seats. This small but significant detail served as a reminder of the car’s iconic status and added a nostalgic touch to the interior design. Additionally, an Arm Resto logo was incorporated into the restoration, further personalizing the interior and showcasing the craftsmanship of the RMD Garage team.

In summary, the interior restoration of the ’56 Bel Air successfully merged modern comfort with classic charm. The inclusion of custom leather seats, the application of a satin finish, and the addition of functional upgrades such as the air conditioning system and gauges all contributed to creating a luxurious and visually appealing interior. By retaining key design elements and incorporating thoughtful details, RMD Garage transformed the interior into a harmonious blend of timeless style and contemporary convenience.

Trunk and Audio System

The trunk of the ’56 Bel Air received custom-made metalwork, showcasing RMD Garage’s dedication to detail and craftsmanship. Keyholes were shaved for a sleek and seamless look. For the audio system, Dave wanted simplicity without compromising on sound quality.

RMD Garage installed a Kicker audio system, delivering excellent audio performance while maintaining a clean and minimalist aesthetic. A Borla exhaust system was also added, providing an enhanced engine sound that complements the car’s powerful presence.


Dave’s decision to restore his inherited ’56 Bel Air led to an incredible transformation, thanks to the collaboration between RMD Garage and other skilled professionals. The restoration process breathed new life into the classic car, merging modern performance enhancements with timeless design. Today, the ’56 Bel Air stands as a testament to the passion and dedication of those involved in its restoration, a cherished family heirloom ready to be enjoyed for generations to come.

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