The Mark IV Chevy Big-Block Becomes a 427!
Dateline: 9.2.15 – The year 1966 was a banner year for Corvettes for several reasons. It was the best sales year for the short, five-year run of the C2 Sting Ray with 27,720 cars built, and convertibles outsold coupes -17,762 convertibles (64%) and 9,958 coupes (36%). This was back in the days when convertible Corvettes actually cost LESS than coupes. The coupe’s base price was $4,295, while the convertible’s base price was $211 less, at $4,084. My, how things have changed! Not only was 1966 the best sales year of the C2 Corvettes, it was the best year ever for Corvettes to that date. The car had come a long way from its breakout year in 1956 when 3,467 Corvettes were sold.
But the big news was under the hood. The Mark IV big-block arrived mid-year in ’65 as a 396 and the 327 Rochester Fuelie was phased out. For 1966, the Mark-IV big-block was opened up to its intended size, the magical 427-cubic-inches. Continue reading
Dan Gale & Zora Arkus-Duntov’s Dream Comes True, After a TON of Work
Dateline: 9.2.15 – There are many car museums in the world but nothing like the National Corvette Museum. Located in Bowling Green, Kentucky, just a quarter-mile from where Corvettes are built, customers can not only tour the assembly plant, they can take in Corvette history at the museum. Starting in 2001, Corvette customers could take delivery of their new car at the museum (option RPO R8C) and get the full royal treatment. The museum was the dream of the late Dan Gale and Zora Arkus-Duntov. In 1986 the Library, Archives, and Museum Committee was formed and Gale was one of the charter members. Duntov wanted a place to store the artifacts of Corvette history.
Obviously, a lot of money needed to be raised and in 1991 Gale was elected as president of the NCM’s board of directors and headed up the “Capital Campaign” Continue reading
August 31, 1992 – Dave McLellan accepts early retirement and steps down after 18 years as the Corvette’s second Chief of Engineering.
General Motors had a mandatory, “retirement at 65” policy, so as Corvette Chief Engineer Zora Arkus-Duntov was nearing retirement in January 1975 the big question was who would be chosen to fill Zora’s big shoes. Duntov was not consulted about his replacement and McLellan would not have been his choice, but Dave was definitely the man for the job. McLellan was an Alfred P. Slone Fellow with a degree in engineering and management. The ‘70s was not a fun time and there were serious issues to be dealt with besides horsepower, racing, and mid-engine designs. There were emissions and quality control issues, as well as the implantation of a new assembly plant and an all-new Corvette to be designed and developed.
When the C4 Corvette came out it received rave reviews – “The Best Vette Yet!” and under McLellan’s leadership kept getting better and better every year. By the late 80s, performance was back to late 1960s levels, Continue reading
The First Z06 Corvette Was a Race Car!
Dateline: 8.30.15 – The original Z06 was Duntov’s “racer kit” for the then-new 1963 Sting Ray. Unlike modern Z06s, there was no flash to the first Z06, it was strictly hardware designed for the racetrack – no badges, special body panels, or designations at all! But considering the official “we don’t race” policy of GM, 199 1963 Fuel Injected Corvettes with heavy-duty brakes and suspension, wasn’t anything in GM’s big picture. But, if you wanted to race your Corvette in ’63, it was everything, and Duntov made sure you got what you needed.
Thanks to the SCCA rules that allowed the 2000-pound Cobra to race against the 3100-pound Corvette, even with the Z06 racer kit, the Vette was at a serious disadvantage. Continue reading
Corvette Timeline Tales: NCM inducts James Jeffords, Myron E. Scott, & John A. Cafaro to the Hall of Fame
August 30, 2002 – National Corvette Museum, inducts James Jeffords, Myron E. Scott, and John A. Cafaro into the Hall of Fame.
Dateline: 8.30.15 – The Corvette has lasted longer than Harley Earl, Ed Cole, Zora Arkus-Duntov, and Bill Mitchell ever imagined back in the 1950s, thanks to the continuing passion of men and women that understand the soul of the Corvette. The National Corvette Museum’s Hall of Fame induction ceremony has become a much-anticipated annual event in the Corvette community, as a “Thank You” to those that have carried the flame forward.
James “Jim” Jeffords was two-time SCCA B-production champion and pioneered the successful use of Duntov’s first “racer kit” the RPO 684 that helped him be unbeatable in 1958 and 1959 driving the Nickey Chevrolet “Purple People Eater” 1958 Corvette.. Jeffords also drove Jerry Earl’s 1956 SR-2, as well as some of the top sports cars of the day including a Scarab, a Maserrati Birdcage, and Jaguar. Continue reading
The 33rd edition of Corvettes at Carlisle, Comes to a close!
Corvettes at Carlisle is a Corvette Happening! The sights, the sounds, the carbon fiber, fiberglass, and wax. With almost 63 years of Corvette history spread out over 82 acres, to take it all in is a marathon. Today, thanks to the wonder of YouTube you can at least get a sense of what the event was like.
Can’t be at the 2015 Corvettes at Carlisle Show? Here are a few video reports.
Thanks to the wonderful world of YouTube, Corvette lovers around the world can at least see and hear some of the sights and sounds of the 2015 annual Corvettes at Carlisle show.
There are two more videos… Continue reading
Al Paer and his 1967 427 Corvette prove that it can be worth getting good grades in high school!
Dateline: 8-29-15 – There is a handful of cars that endear themselves to their owners; Corvettes, Mustangs, Shelbys, GTOs, and several others. But what makes Al Paer’s story so sweet is that Al has owned his 1967 427/435 Corvette roadster since he was in high school! Because Al was getting good grades in school, his Dad let him drive his ’62 Pontiac Tempest. In 1967, Al’s Dad let Al trade in the Tempest for a new ’67 427/435 Corvette Roadster. WHAT’A DAD!
Al has made the ’67 Roadster his own. He has added Hooker Header side pipes, L88 aluminum heads, performance camshaft, aftermarket chrome wheels, a front chin spoiler, Continue reading
1954 Motorama Chevrolet Nomad (Corvette): The Original Corvette “Station Wagon”!
Dateline: 8.29.15 – Unlike the Pontiac, Buick, and Olds ’54 Motorama cars (Corvette wanna-be’s), Chevrolet designers did something totally unique and in retrospect, way ahead of its time. Using a 115-inch wheelbase Chevy station wagon chassis, Earl’s designers and stylists took the complete ’53 Corvette design and stretched it. From the front cowl and windshield forward, it was a production Corvette. Then the doors and back end were stretched to fit the nine-inch longer chassis. The rear fenders were straight off the ’53 Corvette. (scroll down for the video of the 1954 GM Motorama)
The ’54 Motorama Nomad was one of those designs that just looks right at first glance. Obviously not a sports car, the Nomad was a balanced blend of trim sports car styling with the full utility of a station wagon.
“Practicality” was a big sales feature in the ‘50s. Continue reading
Wil Cooksey shares his life story and career in GM and building Corvettes.
Dateline: 8.29.15 – Yesterday we told you about the 2015 Corvettes at Carlisle show and that Wil Cooksey is one of the special guests for the event. Actually, ever since Wil put on that stunning, explosive burnout display back in 2007, he’s become an almost permanent fixture of the Corvettes at Carlisle show.
On April 5, 2013 I had the pleasure of interviewing Wil Cooksey on my Far Out Radio program. The YouTube version of the program is below.
Very Rare C3 Corvette Barn Find – Super Nostalgia!
Dateline August 2015 by Jerry Heasley as republished from SuperChevy.com
Tony Back is so elated with his Vette Rare Find, a month has passed and he hasn’t cleaned the ’72 T-top coupe. “Five or six people have come by my house and said, ‘I hear you found a barn find. You mind if I take a look at it?’” Back is happy to show his treasure but as he explains, “Everybody around here says the same thing, ‘Why haven’t you washed the car? I couldn’t stand that.’” Back tells them the truth. “Once I wash that car, it will never be that dirty again.” In other words, the treasure-find appearance will be gone. Continue reading
The Biggest Corvette Party on the East Coast is ON!
Dateline: 8.28.15 – Corvettes at Carlisle is one of the top three Corvette events. The annual four-day event is situated on 82 acres, in beautiful, rural south east Pennsylvania, just down the road from the Carlisle Army War College. The 82 acre fairground is in a huge bowl shape with “Corvettes only” in the infield. It is absolutely, Corvette sensory overload!
Special guests include…
- TEAM CHEVROLET – Designers, engineers and builders of the Corvette. This is your chance to talk with Team Chevrolet, ask questions and get answers right from the experts! They are also hosting seminars every hour Friday and Saturday in the Team Chevrolet Tent.
- DAVE MCLELLAN – Retired Corvette Chief Engineer
- WIL COOKSEY – Retired Corvette Plant Manager Continue reading
It’s not about numbers,
it’s about PASSION!
Dateline: 8.27.15 – Carlos Lago at Motor Trend arguably has one of the coolest jobs of our time – driving and hot-lapping modern and classic cars, and getting paid to do it and HAVE FUN! Carlos says it all up front. The Camry is an appliance, the 1966 Corvette Sting Ray Coupe with a 4-speed, knock-off aluminum wheels, and factory side pipes is what you WANT to drive, it’s what you LUST to drive! (Make those side pipes BARK and GROWL!)
Not much is known about the Corvette other than the obvious – it’s a small-block with a four-speed and everything is stock, right down to the car’s weakest point, the painfully skinny bias-ply tires. The tires just killed the Corvette’s lap time. The Camry turned in 1:37 @97-mph compared to the Corvette’s 1:44 @ 83-mph. Continue reading
Corvette Timeline Tales: August 22, 1957 – GM designer, Peter Brock submits sketches for a new Corvette design – VIDEO
GM designer, Peter Brock submits sketches for a new Corvette design and Chief of Styling, Bill Mitchell, approves and orders Styling to proceed with Brock’s design.
Peter Brock was one of the youngest designers ever hired by GM Styling. Ed Cole was the new general manager at Chevrolet and after the success of his small-block Chevy engine design, he wanted to make a follow-up splash by introducing the entire 1960 Chevrolet line of cars equipped with a transaxle, including an all-new Corvette. A transaxle would improve weight distribution and yield more front seat interior space. Continue reading
Car Guys bench race the 2015 Z06 Corvette
Dateline: 8.27.15 – When gals get together to “talk” it’s called a “Coffee Klatch”, or a “Gabfest”, or “Ladies Tea.” But when car guys get together to talk cars, it’s called, “Bench Racing.”
They start by saying and asking, “The 2015 Corvette Z06 is a ton or car for the money, but is it the right ton?” Mike Spinelli from After/Drive hosted a 20-minute bench racing session with Travis Okulski of Jalopnik and Jason Harper of Automobile magazine and Time, Inc. All three lads spent time exploring the limits of the C7 Z06 and hoping that the car’s data recorded has a one minute statute of limitations. (pssst… they ALL seriously exceeded the speed limits – big surprise) Click the Read more link to see the video. Continue reading
K. Scott Teeters Corvette art prints are available in our Amazon Store!
Thursday, is our day to honor the fourth generation Corvettes. If your desire is a cheap Corvette, then the concept of a C4 daily driver looks rather promising. A slightly beaten and sufficiently dirty C4 won’t need much care and will reward you with the sound of a V8, the practicality of that glass hatchback and the versatility only a targa roof can provide. Parts availability is brilliant and no matter what anybody says, you’ll be driving the most important Corvette of them all. Just don’t buy an ‘83. Continue reading
K. Scott Teeters Corvette art prints are available in our Amazon store!
Wednesday, the third day of the week is our day to honor the third generation Corvettes. Vettes from 1968 to 1982 are also referred to as “Shark” Corvettes because they were styled after the awesome 1965-1966 Mako Shark II show car.
If you are looking for an entry level Corvette, the newer C3 Corvettes can be purchased at very reasonable prices for several reasons. First, Chevrolet sold STACKS of them. Sales of the 1976 to 1981 Corvettes were astonishing with each year selling OVER 40,000 cars per year! The only ever year to experience similar sales was the first year of the C4 Corvette, 1984. Continue reading
Bowling Green, Kentucky- 568 days after the ground opened and swallowed eight Corvettes.
Dateline: 8-25-15 – The National Corvette Museum made a major announcement today. On September 3, 2015 the museum will have their Grand Re-Opening of the Skydome at 8:45am CT. If you can’t be there, worry not because the event will be shown via the museum’s webcams and will be on YouTube! But here’s the cool part, not only will the 1992 “One Millionth” Corvette be unveiled, but all eight car will be positioned exactly where they were when the ground opened up on February 12, 2014. The One Millionth Corvette, the 2009 ZR1 Blue Devil and black 1962 Corvette will be fully restored and the remaining five cars will be displayed, as they were when recovered. Continue reading
By Brent Davis as republished from CorvetteOnline
CNN Money has listed the 10 most valuable Corvettes according to their research, using the mean sold price. Starting with number 10 and increasing in value we have listed each of the cars along with a bit of tech and specifics about each model. We understand that there may be some very unique or special editions that can draw higher dollar figures, but this list tried to cover the more well known Vettes. Continue reading
Corvette Timeline Tales: August 20, 1954 – Chevrolet races 1953 Corvette at a NASCAR-sanctioned Raleigh Speedway.
The Corvette was a race car almost from the very beginning!
Yes, these were the first Chevrolet-built Corvette race cars. They don’t look familiar because in this promotion photograph the cars had yet to be decorated. The young man to the left and in the back is Bill France, Jr. in 1953 Corvette VIN #211 and the man on the right and in front is Joe Hawkins in 1955 Corvette VIN #1399. The names of the bathing beauties are not known. Back in the NASCAR’s early days they had a “Sports Car Series,” sometimes called the “International Class” that ran as support races for the Grand National races.
Terry Michaelis, owner of ProTeam Corvette has fully restored the 1953 version and meticulously researched the two cars, stitching together the history of these two forgotten Corvette racecars. Back in the day, working under the direction of three-time Indy 500 winner, Mauri Rose and Chevrolet chief engineer, Ed Cole, the Chevrolet Engineering Department did an admirable job turning the struggling Corvette into a racer. Continue reading