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.
Back in the day, the argument between the two camps was finesse and agility vs raw power, with both sides “sniffing” at one another. It was a ton of fun! Both cars deliver an exhilarating driving experience. In the end, our lucky dog host had to go with the Corvette for its sheer power and visceral entertainment.
Enjoy the video, it’s a blast from the past!
I have to share this with you because the Marlboro Maroon Corvette in the motor Trend video is the dead ringer for the story I want to share.
Summer 1967, I’m 13 years old, and a car guy. When you’re too young to drive, you do the next best thing, you build model cars. I was already into Corvettes and knew that the new ’68 Corvette would be based on the Mako Shark-II show car. It was an exciting time for a young car guy – muscle cars were so cool, at the drags Super Stock was hot, and there was a new Vette coming up.
My local hobby shop was Satler’sTrains & Hobbies, in Westmont, New Jersey. There was a cool “older guy” named Bruce that worked at the store (he was probably all of about 24-years old). Well, Bruce had a 1967 427/435 Corvette Roadster, Marlboro Maroon with side-pipes. The car in the above video is a dead ringer for Bruce’s Vette. During that summer when my pals and I was out and about on our bikes, if we weren’t too far away and it was close 5:00 closing time, we’d peddle over to Sattler’s in hopes of seeing Bruce start up his Vette. Most of the time we missed him, but one day we got lucky.
A few of us “just happened to be” out behind the store one hot afternoon when Bruce was leaving to go home. “Hey Bruce!” We all chimed. Bruce smiled and said, “Hey fellows!” He knew full well why we were there. One of us wanted to sound smart and asked, “Hey Bruce, is that the 427/400 with the three-duces or the 427/435 solid-lifter 435 engine?” (Fairly impressive for 13-year-olds) “435, guys.” He said as he was getting into the car. After he closed to door and opened the windows, Bruce put the key into the ignition and with a quick twist of the key, the Corvette CAME ALIVE.
“AH-RUMP-RUMP-RUMP-RUMP… AH RUMP-RUMP-RUMP-RUMP… AH RUMP-RUMP-RUMP-RUMP…” The L71 427/435 sounded like nothing else I’d ever heard, barking, and gurgling through the factory side pipes. I’d read about those chambered “mufflers” that were more like straight pipes. It was the peak experience of my 13-year old life to that point.
Bruce was quiet and cool. He put on his sun glasses, carefully backed out of his parking spo,t and pulled on to the street – but not before blipping the throttle a time or two. There was a traffic light at the corner of Haddon Avenue and Cuthbert Boulevard and Bruce sat there waiting for the green light, while the big 427/435 was filling the air with its wonderful sound. Of course, we were all hoping that he’s rev that 427 up, drop the hammers and blast off!
Naw. He gently pulled away, wound it up in first gear, caught a gentle second gear, and rumbled on home – wherever that was.
We were all dumbfounded – open-mouthed and bucolic – or at least I was. And I remember thinking to myself,” WOW! I’ll bet that’s what sex is like.” – Scott
I have a large collection of 1967 Corvette art prints and laser-etched prints at my Illustrated Corvette Series website, HERE.