We came into this auction delayed by one of SPEED’s copius commercial breaks so we didn’t get the usual analysis one would expect for a Corvette of this rarity. The 1970 ZR-1 Corvette package was the small block replacement for 1969’s L-88. Two other specially equipped big blocks were planned and then scrapped, leaving the ZR-1 to carry the high performance mantle for the model year. The ZR-1 option was described as a Special Purpose Engine Package and came equipped with a 350 ci 370 hp LT-1 engine, M22 4-speed heavy duty transmission, heavy duty power brakes and a special aluminum radiator. Only 25 of 1970’s 17,316 Corvettes were built with the ZR-1 option.
On this particular 1970 ZR-1 Corvette, the commentators question the exterior paint and quality of body preparation and one mentions that what Corvette collectors are most likely looking for was the “combination of equipment and provenance”. That’s exactly what was missing from this sale. It’s our opinion that the seller didn’t do a good job on selling the rarity of the Corvette through the use of documentation, and it’s the lack of documentation that makes claims of rarity suspect. The description of the Corvette on the Barrett-Jackson website also makes no claims to originality or numbers matching and the only document mentioned is a photo of the tank sticker.
A little more than a week ago, Proteam’s Terry Michaelis ranked his A-List of Corvettes and the 53 Corvette ZR-1’s produced from 1970-1972 made the Top 10 with a price point between $150,000-$250,000. If the Corvette is indeed original, the buyer should attempt to add “paper” to the Corvette through NCRS and Bloomington judging.