That's simple. If the VIN starts with 117 or 118 it's a real SS. 117 is a 6-cylinder SS and 118 is a V8 SS. Also, don't go by the cowl tag, only the VIN. If the VIN looks tampered with then walk away.
For earlier Novas it is different but for 1965 thru 1967 Novas, the VIN breaks down like this:I thought that non-SS V8 cars could also have a 118 VIN? Such as a 67 283 powered Sedan......what about non SS coupes? I am suddenly more confused....I thought the 118 just designated it as a V8?