One-of-One, Mid-Engined Chevrolet Corvette Prototype to Make Amelia Island Debut in 2020

Although the Chevrolet Corvette was originally conceptualized as a front-engined, rear-wheel-drive two-seater, the idea of a mid-engined variant has never been too far off thanks to men like Zora Arkus-Duntov. He helped engineer and refine America’s sports car for motorsports glory in the 1950s, and he famously dreamt of a mid-engined variant. Numerous prototypes were even created, by Arkus-Duntov and others, to pitch the executives at General Motors. Now, on March 8, a rare example of those efforts—the 1964 GS IIB—will join the Amelia Island Concours for the first time in history to help celebrate the 2020 Corvette C8.

The abstract Chevy will join the show’s specially organized Silver Anniversary Corvette class exhibition, marking the first time it has ever been shown outside its original display at the Petroleum Museum in Midland, Texas. It will be accompanied by other Corvette Experimental Research Vehicles, such as CERV I, CERV II, and Corvette XP-819, all to celebrate the arrival of the first mid-engined Corvette production car.

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The GS IIB came to life as a project at the hands of Frank Winchell, another one of Chevrolet’s chief engineers in the research and development branch between 1959 and 1966. Although Duntov had always envisioned a mid-engine Corvette with CERV prototypes, other engineers often found themselves at odds with him as they attempted to rival his efforts. Winchell was one of them, thinking that he could outdo Duntov’s mid-engined variants with his own lightweight creation as a way to convince GM executives in favor of such a model.

While storied designer Larry Shinoda shaped the car’s sleek and aerodynamic unibody, the team was able to keep the 1964 GS IIB to a weight of just 1,450 pounds by using thin gauge .032-inch sheet aluminum. Its overall layout took inspiration from the original 1962 Chevrolet Corvair Monza GT concept, featuring advanced-for-the-era designs like a fully independent suspension system. Finally, it’s powered by an all-aluminum, 400-plus-horsepower V-8 measuring 327 cubic inches. The lump is mounted mid-rear, driving the rear wheels through a bespoke single-speed automatic.

Despite further R&D from renowned American racer and engineer Jim Hall, Winchell’s project was ultimately canned after GM executives continued facing pressure to withdraw from motorsports over safety concerns and a ban against factory-sanctioned American racing teams. As a result, the one-off prototype became part of Hall’s private Chaparral collection of race cars and has since remained a museum piece.

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“The Mid-Engine Corvette Class is a dream class,” said Bill Warner, Amelia Island Concours’ founder and chairman, in a statement. “Having a historically significant car at The Amelia that’s never been seen in a concours before is a dream for us. Thanks to Chaparral and the Petroleum Museum that dream has come true.”

SOURCE: The Drive

Corvette Engineer Tadge Juechter Talks 2020 Corvette With Autoline

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The 2020 Corvette has been a very hot topic for many enthusiasts since the car’s official reveal earlier this year. Much has been learned, but there is still so much more we’d like to know about this new, exciting Corvette. One of the best ways to find out the truth about many aspects of the car is by going directly to the people who created it. Autoline did just that and brought a 2020 Corvette and its Chief Engineer, Tadge Juechter, into the studio for a not-so-quick Q&A session.

Tadge has been working on the Corvette brand since around 1993. As such, he has seen many changes and advancements in the car’s progression. His humble and amicable personality could easily be overshadowed by the immense depth of knowledge he has about all things Corvette. In this interview, Autoline’s John McElroy joins Greg Migliore and Gary Vasilash in a tag-team Q&A about all things C8.

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  • Being the Chief Engineer, Tadge knows all about the 2020 Corvette. Well, he knows a LOT about the 2021 Corvette too, but he’s pretty tight-lipped about that one!

Tadge not only knows a lot about the new C8 (obviously), but he also has a way of explaining that information devoid of marketing catch-phrases and scientific, engineer-speak. Tadge connects with the typical car guy because he is a typical car guy! This act

becomes all the more evident throughout the video as Tadge gives his explanation as to why various decisions were made throughout the car’s gestation.

The parallels between today and Zora’s era are surprisingly similar. Interestingly, Tadge reports that GM’s head “car guy” at the time, Bob Lutz, said, “If anybody starts work on a mid-engine car, they’re fired!” Clearly, the class between passion and corporate dictates is not relegated only to Zora’s tenure.

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  • Everything from the “squircle” steering wheel to the security measures required by today’s cars is addressed in this video.

Tadge now admits that they were working on the C8 back when the C7 was first revealed, a fact that he gets grilled on by John McElroy, as he asked Tadge about a mid-engine car back then. Of course, Tadge gave a slippery answer that dodged the question, a tactic he used a couple of times in this video as well. When John asked about an all-electric Corvette and an all-wheel variant of the C8.

What Tadge DID share was well worth watching the video though! He not only went into what it took to get management on-board with the idea of a mid-engine Corvette but also what it took from an engineering standpoint to make it all happen. He explains why the C8 coupes rear glass is so thick, and also why the C8 now has adjustable ride-height, even though they’ve wanted to have it on Corvette for generations.

Tadge goes on to explain his personal fears by making the mid-engine Corvette and also gives some idea how much faster the new platform is over the C7 generation. He explains the car’s handling dynamics devoid of only the most necessary physics and informs the panel (and us) how this new platform actually puts less strain on the car’s tires than the out-going model.

Why No Manual?

Of course, Tadge also addresses the question of why the C8 isn’t offered in a manual variant. His blunt reply was, “Because no one is willing to make one at a loss!” For the low numbers necessary, it would be cost-prohibitive to create one for C8. To ease everyone’s mind, Tadge does explain that the thought of no third pedal was a hard one to accept for the entire Corvette team. He even explains that “I’ve NEVER purchased a car in my entire life that wasn’t a manual!” More than just a numbers game, he goes on to explain the various reasons why a manual would wind up bringing more compromises to Corvette than benefits.

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  • By far, the biggest reaction from enthusiasts came from the fact that there is no manual transmission option for the 2020 Corvette. Tadge understands the concern and explains what the team went through to come to that decision.

Audiophiles will appreciate the conversation where Tadge explains that the Bose system in the C8 Corvette is the loudest one ever installed by GM or Bose. He even tells how the folks at Bose truncated the system as they felt it was too loud. To which Tadge replied, “Don’t do that! Let the customer truncate it! Some people like it at 11!”

I’ve NEVER purchased a car in my entire life that wasn’t a manual! – Tadge Juechter, Corvette Chief Engineer

All in all, the interview goes on to show not only the vast knowledge that Tadge has about this remarkable new car, but also why he is so sought-after for interviews. He communicates in such a down-to-earth, and interesting way, that you can easily get caught up in the conversation and forget that this video is over an hour long. Even so, it is a great watch and for those interested in the next-generation Corvette, it brings a vast knowledge of what it took to get to this point, and also what to expect once we start seeing them on showroom floors and on the road. You would do well to invest the time to watch this video. You’ll be glad you did!

SOURCE: Autoline/Bolig

2020 Chevrolet Corvette Officially “Sold-Out” In America

All 40,000 units allotted for the US market are already spoken for.

The start of production for the all-new, rear-mid-engine 2020 Chevrolet Corvette C8 has been moved back from this month to February 2020, but that hasn’t stemmed the tide of customer orders in the US. MotorTrend reports that, according to GM North America President Barry Engle, all 40,000 Corvettes allotted for the US market for 2020 have already been spoken for by Chevrolet dealerships.

The auto workers union strike earlier in the year forced General Motors to rethink its production ramp-up schedule at its Bowling Green, Kentucky assembly plant, and the delay could affect the start of availability in global markets outside the US.

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The Corvette C8 marks perhaps the most dramatic leap for Corvette since the model line’s introduction, as it’s now a rear-mid-engine car. That’s a move that GM has been contemplating for time immemorial, with numerous rear-mid-engine Corvette prototypes stretching back several decades. Placing the engine behind the driver can lead to sharper, more agile handling as it moves the center of gravity closer to the middle of the car.

Needless to say, Corvette fans are onboard, and GM’s first production rear-mid-engine ‘Vette has been hotly anticipated. Engle says that dealers have been encouraged to sell the cars at sticker price, rather than gouging customers for what is clearly a high-demand product, but that dealers are, ultimately, independent.

Source: Carbuzz

Rare Chevrolet Corvette Costs More Than A Bugatti Chiron

You’ll need considerably deep pockets to afford this classic Corvette.

With a starting price of less than $60,000, the 2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray is a performance car bargain. However, if you have considerably more cash to spare, you can also buy this 1967 Chevrolet Corvette for a cool $3.95 million. That makes it more expensive than a Bugatti Chiron. What could possibly make a Corvette so special to justify this eye-watering price?

This 1967 Chevrolet Corvette L88 Coupe finished in Sunfire Yellow is one of only 20 Corvettes fitted with the legendary L88 427 cubic inch, big-block V8 engine. Some were driven on the street, but most were pushed hard on the race track, competing in races such as the 24 Hours of Le Mans, 12 Hours of Sebring, and 24 Hours of Daytona.

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Of the 20 cars that were built, only 10 still survive today. Of these, only three still have an original L88 under the hood. Two of these are convertibles, which makes this the only surviving 1967 Chevrolet Corvette L88 Coupe.

The Corvette L88 option took years to develop and was essentially a factory racing package that could be ordered directly from Chevrolet for a brand-new street Corvette. Its big-block V8 produces over 500 horsepower, and Chevrolet also fitted a heavy-duty four-speed manual transmission, heavy duty power brakes, heavy duty suspension, and a cowl induction L88 hood.

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It’s in excellent condition too considering its age, having undergone a meticulous ten-year restoration and only clocking up 264 miles on the odometer. The current well known west coast Corvette dealer plans to auction this rare L88 next year at auction. The last L88 was at Barrett-Jackson in 2014 for $3.85 million.

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SOURCE: CarBuz

Chevy Loses Money on Every C8 Corvette Stingray Under $80K

An insider indicates the new 2020 Corvette is a loss leader.

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The all-new mid-engine C8 Corvette’s impressive $59,995 starting price is only good for the first year, and unless it goes up by $20,000, Chevrolet will continue to lose money on low-trim cars, a senior GM source told our colleagues at MotorTrend. The price increase for the 2021 model year isn’t much of a surprise, as the base price of a C7 rose nearly $2,000 in its second year and by another $2,000 the following year. While we still don’t know how much the C8’s price will rise in 2021, a more senior GM official says it would have to go through the roof in order to cover GM’s costs.

According to the source, the original budget for the C8 project assumed a starting price of $79,995. This is certainly reasonable considering the enormous amount of work needed to redesign the car into a mid-engine configuration, but that figure is a massive jump from the C7’s base price of $56,995, so to keep customers from revolting, Chevy is taking it on the chin and willingly losing money on every C8 it sells for less than roughly $80,000. The C8’s laundry list of options and dress-up parts no doubt resulted from the hope buyers will load up their cars with extras and turn their $60,000 Stingrays into $80,000-plus Stingrays. The C8 Stingray Z71 3LT we drove rang up at $88,810.

More critical are the base prices of upcoming performance variants, including the Z06 and ZR1. According to the GM source, the sweet spot for profit and volume is between $80,000 and $100,000. Once the car crests six figures, they say, sales volume drops off precipitously. This will be a trick for Chevrolet, because the C7 Z06 starts at $82,990, which doesn’t leave the company much room for an increase without upsetting customers and breaking out of the aforementioned sweet spot. The C7 ZR1, meanwhile, already starts at $135,090, so Chevrolet has more discretion to price the C8 ZR1 knowing full well it will be a low-volume car.

SOURCE: Automobile

Does it look like a Lotus from certain angles?

The 2020 Chevy Corvette changed the game for the iconic model by putting the engine behind the passenger compartment for the first time. We’re still months away from the C8 Corvette entering public hands, but that hasn’t stopped HugoSilva Designs from imagining a new Corvette with a downright sinister widebody kit that does little to quell the Corvette’s already busy styling.

See More Dope C8 Corvette Renderings:

 2020 Chevrolet Corvette Grand Sport Looks Racy In Fan Rendering

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 2020 Corvette C8 Widebody Imagined With Ferrari Testarossa Cues

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 2020 Corvette Shooting Brake Rendering Is Awesome And Impossible

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 Chevy Corvette C8 4×4 Rendering Is The Awesome Rally Supercar We Need

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The trio of renderings shows a lowered and stanced Corvette with the wheels pushed to the corners and new sheet metal to cover them. At the front, there’s an aggressive lower front fascia that hovers inches above the ground. The new front fenders arch over the big wheels tucked underneath. The design probably increases engine and brake cooling.

At the rear, the tires receive new, wider fenders that enhance the car’s already pronounced hips. There appear to be additional vents at the back of the new fenders, likely aiding in cooling. The lower rear fascia is new, while the bumper has carbon fiber accents. The exhaust tips are unique; however, they do maintain the stock car exhaust’s general shape and design. Then there’s the massive rear wing completes the widebody kit. You can see hints of Lotus in the car’s design from certain angles, too, but it’s only a passing resemblance if you squint.

Gallery: 2020 Chevy Corvette Widebody Renderings By HugoSilva Designs

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One aspect of the new Corvette that’s flown under the radar since its debut in July is the aftermarket scene. Tuners and the Corvette go back decades, and they’re not abandoning the mid-engine Corvette just because the engine moved. There will be body kits, intake and exhaust systems, and more for the car when it arrives, allowing customers to customize their ride further or increase its performance.

Right now, the automaker is preparing for the new model’s launch and is seeking new employees to help with it. Production for the Corvette is set to begin in February with customer deliveries following. General Motors missed its self-imposed deadline of beginning production by the end of the year due to the UAW contract strike that lasted six weeks.

Source: HugoSilva Designs via CarScoops

Win A New 2020 Corvette From The National Sprint Car Hall of Fame

To say that the new mid-engine Corvette is Torch Red-hot right now would be an understatement. The new car has demanded the attention of enthusiasts, competitors, and also those who wish to harness the car’s celebrity status to bring attention to their causes and corporation. Many times, not only does the entity benefit, but also those wishing they had one of these new supercars in their garage.

The Knoxville, Iowa-based National Sprint Car Hall of Fame & Museum is one such entity that has made the initial commitment to secure a C8 to be given to one lucky donor. The National Sprint Car Hall of Fame & Museum is the only museum in the world solely dedicated to sprint car racing, and last year awarded a C7 Z06. While this year’s C8 doesn’t have the Z06’s horsepower, it easily makes up for it in style points and mid-engine goodness. It also includes the super-performing Z51 package to make the most of the engine’s migration.

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  • The new 2020 Corvette Stingray has been shown all over the country and if you’re the lucky winner, you could have one for your very own garage!

The new 2020 Corvette Stingray’s LT2 engine brings 495 horsepower and a dual-clutch, eight-speed transmission to the table. The additional Z51 package adds to it with Z51-specific front splitter and rear spoiler, Michelin PS4 tires, FE3 suspension, larger front, and rear brakes, electronic, limited-slip differential, front brake cooling inlets, and a performance exhaust that allows all 495 of those horses breathe.

There has been so much in the news about the new C8 Corvette, up to and including it winning the MotorTrend Car of the Year Award, but all the praise and hype pales in comparison to putting one of these babies in your garage. The 2020 Z51 Corvette Stingray drawing is a fundraiser to support the continued operation of the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame & Museum and by donating to this 501(c)(3) non-profit entity, your name will go into the drawing for a chance to win the world’s newest, mid-engine supercar.

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  • Inside the Corvette, you’ll find GT1 Competition seats with Mulan Leather seating surfaces and perforated inserts, a leather-wrapped steering wheel with power tilt and telescoping column, a Bose 10-speaker, premium sound system, and an 8-inch, color touch-screen with Chevrolet’s latest infotainment system.

Donation levels range from $25 through $1,000 to allow participation at any level and tickets can be purchased until August 15, 2020, at 9 pm (CDT). The drawing will be held on August 15, 2020, at 10 pm (CDT). Participants can purchase as many tickets as they’d like, as often as they want. The Sweepstakes is open to anyone 18 years or older. Citizens and residents of the U.S. and any other country in which sweepstakes are legal may enter this sweepstake. Of course, all federal, state, and local laws and regulations apply.

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  • Performance abounds with the Z51 package, which brings all 495 horses from that 6.2L LT2 engine and controls them better with bigger brakes and suspension.

The winner does not have to be present to win and will be notified on August 15, 2020, by phone and/or email, based on the contact information provided at the time of ticket purchase. The National Sprint Car Hall of Fame & Museum will also post the winner’s name and ticket number on their website after the winning ticket is drawn. Those with the eyesight for fine print can go to the Sweepstake’s Rules page and see the entire listing of rules and regulations.

Good luck to all who participate and may the benefits of this C8 Corvette Sweepstakes be far-reaching for both its new owner and the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame & Museum.

SOURCE: LSX Mag.

Rare Rides: The 1967 Chevrolet Corvette

If you ask anyone who has an undying love for a particular car why they hold it dear, you’ll hear a story. “It was the first car I ever remember seeing;” “The coolest kid in high school had one;” or “I saw one in red and it just did something for me.”

My love for Corvettes is profound and similarly has a story behind it. My uncle Tommy bought a gorgeous, new, white 1978 Corvette coupe when I was nine. He sped me around Cincinnati, Ohio for seven days while I was visiting, once. I decided when that week was over – I would be a ‘Vette aficionado.

My Uncle’s C3 ignited my love affair with “America’s Sports Car,” but as my tastes evolved and matured, I gravitated towards the C2. The sleek lines of the convertibles and nearly absurd elegance of the early split-window coupes get me to this day.

My end-all-be-all Corvette fantasy is the ultimate expression of the second-generation model – the 1967 Chevrolet Corvette L88. You’re not familiar with this monster of American automotive design? Well, you will be by the end of this month’s Rare Rides!

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  • An immaculate example of a 1967 Chevrolet Corvette L88 coupe. (Photo courtesy of Barrett-Jackson Auctions.)

The second-generation Corvette arrived in August of 1962 as a 1963 model and lasted until the 1967 model year. They named it the Stingray because of its low profile and healthy width. It was born from several experimental vehicles that Chevrolet design engineers Zora Arkus-Duntov and Bill Mitchell developed near the end of the first-gen production run.

But, Duntov saw an ultimate potential the first-gen Corvette hadn’t yet reached. He thusly created a Super Sport prototype to push the envelope in search of what it could be.

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  • Duntov’s Super Sport Corvette. (Photo courtesy of General Motors Media.)

Mitchell took Duntov’s effort and further evolved it into another prototype known internally as The Sting Ray Special. They tested the Special in various Sport’s Car Club of America (SCCA) C-Modified class events. Eventually, the team tweaked into a concept called the XP-720.

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  • A clay model of the XP-720 prototype. (Photo courtesy of General Motors Media.)

Duntov and Mitchell’s XP-720 provided the basis for the production C2. It had greater interior space than the original Corvette whilst simultaneously shrinking the overall exterior proportions. A long hood and set-back powerplant aided in weight distribution and were central to the new design, thereby improving handling.

The development of the production vehicle included several advanced features for the time. Among them were independent suspension at all four wheels, hydraulic power steering as an option, and Chevy’s most powerful engine at the time – the iconic 327ci V8.

The car was to be available in a coupe and convertible form. It featured crisp lines – a bold departure from the C1. It also sported vents on the hood and front fenders behind the wheel arches.

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But perhaps the most dramatic stylistic element was the split rear window on the coupes. Inarguably beautiful, the rear glass was a major bone of contention between Duntov and Mitchell. The former argued against it as it added considerable complexity to the manufacturing process and presented a safety issue, while the latter fought for it as an aesthetic statement.

Ultimately, Mitchell won the battle and Duntov the war. The split-window was only around for the first year of production. They replaced it with a conventional window thereafter.

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  • Proud papa: Zora Arkus-Duntov and his creation. (Photo courtesy of General Motors Media.)

Mechanically, the car had all the performance-oriented equipment Duntov ever wanted – save for a mid-engine design. The 327 was the only engine option for the initial model year. Although, it could be had in several variations.

In standard form, the motor developed 250hp and 350 lb-ft of torque. In the L75 configuration, the numbers rose to 300hp and 360 lb-ft. L76 equipped cars pushed out 340 ponies and 344 pound-feet, and the top-of-the-line L84 version afforded 360hp and 352 lb-ft of torque.

A three-speed manual handled the transmission of power to the rear. An optional Muncie M20 4-Speed was available for the 250hp and 300hp engines, and another with different gearing for the 340hp and 360hp engines. An M35 Powerglide two-speed automatic transmission was also an option. A wide variety of differential gearing was available.

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  • The 1963 Corvette convertible. (Photo courtesy of Hemmings Motor News.)

The front suspension consisted of frame-hinged upper and lower control arms with coil springs, shock absorbers, and a stabilizer bar. In the rear were shock absorbers, struts, and transversely-positioned leaf springs.

Brakes consisted of hydraulic drums at all four corners, with power and metallic sintered brakes optional. Covering them were 15×5.5-inch wheels with 15×6-inch wheels optional. You could have them shod with your choice of  6.70 x 15 four-ply, blackwall nylon or whitewall rayon tires.

Seven exterior colors, four interior colors, and three top colors were available. Two wheel choices were available, including cast-aluminum knock-offs.

The arrival of the 1963 Corvette was nothing less than a thunderclap. The automotive press heaped almost universal praise on the car, with outright raves bestowed on its radical styling and superb performance. Duntov added to the hype by publicly stating “For the first time, I now have a Corvette I can be proud to drive in Europe.”

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  • A vintage advertisement for the 1963 Corvette. (Image courtesy of General Motors Media.)

Capitalizing on the unprecedented coverage, GM launched an ad campaign with the slogan “Only a man with a heart of stone could withstand temptation like this.”

The car-buying public bought into the C2 wholeheartedly. Chevrolet sold a record 10,594 Corvette coupes and 10,919 convertibles in the first year.

Aesthetic and mechanical updates were bestowed on the C2 in each successive model year. The 425hp, 396ci big-block was added to the optional engine lineup in 1965. The almighty, 435hp, 460 lb-ft, 427ci lump was added the following year.

Chevrolet and Zora Arkus-Duntov wasn’t done with the C2 yet.

1967 was the last year of the second-gen before it gave way to the all-new C3. Chevy made subtle changes to the car’s appearance.  Most of the exterior trim was removed and the front fender vents were redesigned. The rockers were given a new, flat finish, a single backup light was introduced, and the wheels were given a fresh treatment.

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  • The 1967 Chevrolet Corvette L88 convertible. (Photo courtesy of topspeed.com.)

The top-of-the-line engine offering for ’67, however, was anything but subtle. Sending the C2 off with a bang, Chevy introduced its ultimate iteration of the 427 big-block in the form of the L88.

The L88 was based on the 435hp L89 version of the 427. It was as close to a pure racing engine as Chevrolet had ever bequeathed to a street-legal road car. It featured featherweight aluminum cylinder heads atop a standard iron block.

They had meticulously forged 5140 hardened-steel crankshafts, cross-drilled for lightness and superlative lubrication.

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  • The monster 427ci L88 V8 big-block. (Photo courtesy of topspeed.com.

Eight forged-aluminum pistons were coupled to the crankshaft with Magnafluxed and shot-peened connecting rods. yielded an astonishing 12.5:1 compression ratio. A hi-lift cam and solid lifters also joined the party.

The engine was topped off with an 850-cfm double-pumper Holley carburetor with an aluminum intake at the base of the windshield. A transistor ignition and an aluminum cross-flow radiator were fitted.

The legendary M22 “rock-crusher” four-speed manual transmission was the only transmission option for the L88. It also required the G80 Positraction 4.56 rear axle, F41 suspension, and J56 heavy-duty brakes.

The L88 was also unique as to what standard parts were mandatorily deleted.

The fan shroud was removed, and no emissions system was present. Instead of a PCV valve, a simple tube was installed that vented crankcase gasses directly into the atmosphere through the driver’s side valve cover.

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  • The interior of the 1967 Chevrolet Corvette L88. Note the lack of radio and climate controls. (Photo courtesy of topspeed.com.)

L88 cars also saw several creature comforts deleted. The radio, power windows, automatic engine choke, and cockpit climate control were among them.

The L88 was, quite literally, monstrous by today’s standards let alone those of the late sixties. Ridiculously underrated at 430hp and 380 lb-ft of torque by the factory, bone-stock L88s were actually producing in excess of 560hp. This, in a car with a curb weight of 3,175 pounds!

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  • A close up of the floor console with a unique OEM warning label. (Photo courtesy of topspeed.com.)

It’s no surprise then to learn that the 1967 Chevrolet Corvette L88 was capable of five-second zero-to-sixty times, and quarter-miles banged out in the low-eleven second range. Chevrolet avoided any mention of the L88 package in its literature because its performance was so prodigious and to avoid issues with the authorities. Only a person “in the know” would ever be aware that the option even existed.

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  • An L88 coupe. (Photo courtesy of Mecum Auctions.)

Chevrolet produced only twenty examples of the 1967 Corvette L88 coupe and convertible. The outrageous performance and diminutive production numbers make it one of the ultimate Corvettes. One even sold at auction in 2014 for $3,850,000.

It also makes for one of the world’s foremost Rare Rides.

SOURCE: Street Muscle Mag.

This first-ever L88 Corvette could sell for $3 million

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What does it take to become the most desirable Corvette ever built? How about one of the meanest 427 big-blocks to ever roll out of Detroit and a road-racing pedigree to go with it? Just 20 Corvettes were equipped with the race-bred L88 powerplant for 1967, and this convertible is documented as being the first. After a no-sale at an auction appearance earlier this year when the bid crept past $1.5 million, the first-ever L88 Corvette is headed to Auction, where it could take the title of most expensive Corvette sold at auction.

Chevrolet had a phenomenal year in 1967. The brand launched a new generation of pickup trucks and introduced the world to the Camaro, which debuted the 350 V-8, the engine that would go on to be the standard bearer for the Chevrolet small-block for decades. It was also the final year for the second-generation Corvette, one of the most beautiful cars ever built. As a send-off, Chevrolet gave the 1967 Sting Ray a little-known engine option meant for racing, the L88 427.

The Mark IV 427 big-block debuted in 1966 and boasted up to 450 horsepower in the Corvette thanks to the L72 engine and its solid lifter cam. Later builds of the L72 were labeled as producing 425 horsepower, while no mechanical changes were made, creating a bit of Corvette lore as to why Chevrolet would care to sandbag its power ratings. It wouldn’t be the last time, either.

The L88 engine took the L72’s foundation and added aluminum heads and an even more radical camshaft with 326/334 degrees of duration at .015 lift on the intake and exhaust, respectively, and an equally wild .540/.560 inches of lift. The new heads and forged aluminum pistons set the static compression at 12.5:1–up from 11.0:1 on the L72–and meant the engine would require 103 octane gas for proper operation. With all of its racy parts, the L88 was rated at 430 horsepower, five horsepower less than the triple-carbed L71 that was otherwise identical to the L72. Who did Chevy think it was fooling?

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Each of the 20 L88 Corvettes built in 1967 also came with a bevy of high-performance options bundled with it, including the burly M22 “rock-crusher” four-speed, F41 suspension, heavy-duty power brakes, G81 Positraction differential, performance radiator, and radio/heater delete. It made it a formidable track tool and that’s just what it was used for, as it was raced by Tony DeLorenzo in 1967 with lots of SCCA checkered flags to show for it. In 1968, Yenko Stinger veteran Jerry Thompson also got some seat time as Owens-Corning and eventually Hanley Dawson Chevrolet sponsored the car in competition where it successfully held its own against Cobras. After its race career ended in the early 1980s, Ken and Gary Naber restored the Sting Ray and it began collecting other trophies, this time at car shows. It has won several National Corvette Restorers Society Top Flight Awards as well as the Muscle Cars and Corvette Nationals Triple Diamond award.

All of those accolades, and those are just a sample, mean that this will likely be one of the most talked-about cars at the upcoming auction. The current record for most expensive Corvette is held by a 1967 L88 Coupe which sold in 2014 at Barrett-Jackson’s Scottsdale sale for $3.85M and this car may have a shot at taking the crown.

Its race pedigree is balanced by the fact that it was extensively modified for race use and lead a tough life. Some buyers may prefer an unrestored example, but as far as big-block Corvettes that left the factory with the goal of track domination in mind, few can compare.

SOURCE: CarBuzz  ….Corvette Mike

 

I.E. . It didn’t sell at the recent auction and the top bid was $1 million 800 thousand dollars.

C8 Corvette ZR1

The C8 is still months away from release and the rumor mill is going strong about the new ZR1! It was just July of this year Chevrolet announced the C8, and then the C8 Convertible. The independent magazine reviews didn’t get released until this month, with the C8 getting Car and Driver’s 10Best title. But now that the C8 is old news, the rumor mill is a buzz about the C8 ZR1, not sure what happened to the C8 Z06.

These rumors are said to come from high-placed sources that talked to Motor Trend, and if the rumors are to be believed, the new ZR1 will be electrified and produce over 900hp combined. The power will come from a twin turbo V8, between 4.2L and 5.5L, powering the back tires, and a 115hp (over 880 lb-ft) electric motor powering the front tires. The front-mounted electric motor would increase performance and even perform torque vectoring to better aid the rear axle’s electronically controlled limited-slip differential. This configuration offers numerous benefits, such as improved handling and the ability to put down more power while exiting corners.

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SOURCE: MotorTrend