Corvette Odd-Ball: Was the 1938 Adler Trumpf Rennlimousine the Genesis of the Iconic Sting Ray’s Roof?
Was Corvette Designer Larry Shinoda Inspired by an Old German Pre-WW II Racecar?
The lineage runs like this. In 1957 Chevrolet’s new general manager, Ed Cole (the engineer credited with the design of the small-block Chevy engine – the greatest, longest-in-production engine in Detroit history) decided that by 1960 ALL General Motors cars would use a transaxle to improve weight distribution, handling, and to open up interiors for more space. It was call the “Q-Chevrolets” and yes, there was to even be a Q-Corvette.
Young designer Peter Brock came up with a concept sketch that delighted styling chief, Bill Mitchell. A scale model, then a full-size clay model were created for review. One glance at the Q-Corvette and there’s no denial – it’s a prehistoric Sting Ray. Unfortunately for the Q-Corvette, the entire Q-Chevrolet collapsed on the weight of the tooling cost of the transaxles, so Peter Brock and Bob Veryzer’s Q-Corvette was dead in the water. But not for long… Continue reading
1963 C2 Z06, 2001 C5 Z06, 2006 C6 Z06 & 2015 C7 Z06
As a salute the success and rave reviews of the new C7 Z06, my new prints show the original, 1963 Z06, the C5 2001 Z06, the C6 2006 Z06, and the C7 2015 Z06, available in three unique graphic treatments – Brushed Metal, Diazo Blueprint Paper, and Kraft Paper!
The Z06 has worked out to be one of the most interesting stories in Corvette lore. What started out as an obscure “for racers only” RPO option that hardly anyone knew about, has become GM’s flagship performance car. This is nothing less than astonishing. Heck, even General Motors’ CEO Mary Barra just got herself a black-on-black Z06 convertible. I was joking with Doug MacDonald (Dave MacDonald’s brother), “You think the workers might have been a little nervous bolting together The Queen Mary’s Z06? NO PRESSURE, guys! HA!” Kidding aside, it’s good to see that she has good taste!
Up to the end of April 2015 Chevrolet reported 8,206 Z06s sold. That number already beats out the C6 Z06’s best sales year from 2007 when Chevrolet sold 7,760 Z06s. With a total-to-date (as of the end of April 2015) of 31,377 Corvettes built, 2,618 were Z06 models, that’s 26.18% of the 2015 production so far. The plant has a full two more months of figures to announce, as production of the 2015 Corvettes ends on June 22, 2015. (Check out the 2015 Z06 TV Commercial, click the “Continue reading” link below)
Here’s What Corvettes Mean To People
The other day Joe Pruitt, the Event Coordinator/Owner of the National Corvette Homecoming event contacted me to tell me about their new event video by Efran Films that covered the National Corvette Homecoming 2014 event. This is a very touching video that captures what Corvettes mean to people. As we know, they’re not just “car” they’re something else. Actually, the people in the video say it perfectly. This video has heart! Enjoy! – Scott
Mannington, New Jersey, Du Pont Safety Consultant, Gary Ricketts’ Pro Street ‘65 Sting Ray Coupe
South Jersey lifetime resident, Gary Ricketts came of age at the tail end of the muscle car era, with the party peaking before he got his driver’s license in 1971. Like most teenage car guys his age, he got to watch his favorite muscle cars duke it out at tracks such as Atco Raceway, Englishtown, Maple Grove, and Cecil County Drag-O-Way. When it comes to cars, what a young man is exposed to usually sets their taste in performance cars for a lifetime. Continue reading
Late 60’s Corvette-Porsche Rivalry on Video
Dateline: 2-10-15 – Motor Trend has taken the car magazine experience to a whole new level with their video productions. And having the videos up on YouTube is just too sweet. This video was published last August and somehow I missed it. What’a matchup: The 1967 427/435 Corvette Sting Ray Roadster vs the 1968 Porsche 911 L.
Both cars are period perfect. What the Corvette has in brute force and beautiful stereo-music booming from the factory side-pipes, the Porsche makes up for in better braking experience thanks to the 911’s low weight and agility due to quicker steering. If you go strictly by the numbers, the Corvette slams the 911L. However, the driving experience isn’t just about 0-60 and ¼-mile times. Continue reading
October 5, 1966, the Running Mako Shark-II Debuts at the Paris Auto Show
Forty-Nine years ago today, October 5, 1965, the automotive press got to see the first, running Mako Shark-II show car at the Paris Auto Show in France. The non-running full-size model of the Mako Shark-II had been shown in April ’65 at the New York Auto Show and was a knock-out. The response was so overwhelming, Chevrolet brass quickly decided to build a running prototype for the next phase of development.
As V.P. of Design, Bill Mitchell laid out what he wanted the next Corvette to be. See if you can follow this.
He wanted the following; “a narrow, slim, center section and coupe body, a tapered tail, an all-of-a-piece blending of the upper and lower portions of the body through the center (avoiding the look of a roof added to a body), and prominent wheels with their protective fenders distinctly separate from the main body, yet grafted organically to it.” Continue reading
Corvette Racing Legend, Dave MacDonald Inducted Into National Corvette Museum Hall of Fame
Dateline: 9-27-14 Auto racing legend Dave MacDonald was inducted into The National Corvette Museum Hall of Fame on August 28, 2014, in Bowling Green, Kentucky. MacDonald’s induction took place 50 years after the extremely talented young driver was tragically killed in his rookie race at the 1964 Indy 500 that also claimed the life of driver Eddie Sachs. After the race, an investigation determined that there was, “No driver error.”
MacDonald learned his driving skills in Southern California behind the wheel of several championship-winning first generation Corvettes. A gentle, quiet family man off the track, MacDonald was known as “The Master of Oversteer” and a fierce competitor. His driving skills were such that they attracted the attention of two other legends in auto racing of that time, Corvette Chief Engineer Zora Arkus-Duntov and Carroll Shelby. MacDonald drove prototype test cars for Duntov and was eventually hired by Shelby to drive Cobras professionally.
His induction into The National Corvette Museum’s Hall of Fame was well deserved and more than a little overdue. Regardless, Dave MacDonald now has a prominent and permanent place in Corvette history.
I have written extensively about the life and times of Dave MacDonald and have had the pleasure of getting to know the MacDonald family. I have Dave MacDonald’s younger brother Doug to thank. Many years ago I created a piece of line art for VETTE Magazine as a column filler “spot art” illustration. Later I included the illustration as an art print on my IllustratedCorvetteSeries.com website and mistakenly titled the print, “Dave MacDonald’s 1961 Corvette Racer.”