Thank you! The point I've made repeatedly....If 4 speeds were to have been used in 57 passenger cars there would have been a shifter available. he only shifter in the 57 Chevy Master Parts Book is for Corvette, and there was only one place to mount that shifter and that was the 3 bosses at the very back of the tail housing, placing the shifter UNDER the seat,. I saw a 57 that had a Corvette shifter in the 60'sand the seat had been cut back with a cove to fit the shifter. The car still had the column shifter sticking up as a decoy.
Bob Drennan had a black 57 BA hardtop with a dated 57 4 speed but I later found out where the 4 speed came from. It was a slick job and it fooled a lot of people for a lot of years. I still have a tracing of the shape of the shifter. I copied it by welding 2 59 and later shifters together, for a car I built for Bob Wingate, in 79 or 80. I later found out he had sold it as an original 57 4 speed car, even though the trans was a 1960 4 speed with the 5 boss tail housing, to move the shifter forward, to clear the seat. Wingate eventually went to jail, but not for that deal.
I have original 1957, 1960, and 1962 Master Parts Catalogs. The 4 speed shifter and linkage parts for the passenger car start with 1958. There's a 4 speed shifter for '57 Corvette, but not passenger car.
IMO - end of story. Even if it didn't make it into the 1957 catalog, it would have certainly be in the 1960 version.
I got into it some years back with a smug little twit who insisted he bought a 4 speed '57 brand new from the dealer. When I challenged him on it - repeatedly - he finally admitted he had the dealer install it. So fine - he did drive off the lot with a 4 speed - but the factory didn't deliver the car to the dealer with a 4 speed. But, that's just the kind of smug, know-it-all the guy was. (I knew him, but couldn't stand him.)
And, yes - I've read the article in the Chevrolet Service News as well. Yes, it says both Corvettes and passenger cars. But, the subsequent parts catalogs disagree.