Article Contributed by Steve Burns
Our final preview of select Barrett-Jackson Corvettes ends with Lot #1256. This rare 1971 LS6 Coupe will cross the block on Saturday, January 22nd live on Speed TV. An LS6 Corvette is more rare than a L88 equipped Corvette. Only 188 cars escaped St. Louis with the 425hp, 454 CI motor compared to 216 L88’s.
Due to a labor strike which shortened the 1970 model run, 1971 was essentially an extension of 1970. Updates that year were mainly cosmetic except under the hood. Rising insurance and gas costs and were slowly starting to eat away the muscle car market. In response, GM lowered the compression ratios on the available engine in 1971, but still had one more surprise in store. The legendary LS6 found its way over to the Corvette. The stump pulling aluminum head big block added 22% ($1,221) to the coupe’s base price of $5,496. Needless to say, not too many people opted for that powerplant.
Chevrolet assembled 21,801 Corvettes in for the 1971 model run. Of those, less than 1% (188) were equipped with RPO LS6, the 425hp 454CI big block. This Arizona-kept example has been in storage since 1987 and shows just 19,542 actual miles. The Mulsanne Blue on blue vinyl, 4 speed coupe is highly documented including a recent NCRS Top Flight award. Other documentation includes the Protect-O-Plate, sales brochures, bill of sale, and numerous service records. The current owner states that it still wears the original paint, interior, and engine compartment. The undercarriage still shows the frame stencil markings.
The market is finally catching on to low mile, unrestored cars. Factor in the LS6, documentation, awards, and all the Barrett-Jackson pageantry and we’re sure to see this one bid very quickly into the six-figure range. So tune in to Speed this Saturday January 22nd to see how much this rare Corvette sells for.
Stay tuned to CorvetteBlogger.com as we’ll begin highlighting some of the more memorable Corvettes auctioned at 2011 Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale event in the next couple of days.