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Corvette Number 002 Found?

by Keith Cornett on October 4, 2006

C1 Corvette Ken Amrick is reporting in the Fall 2006 issue of On Solid Ground that the body from Corvette #002 may have been located. On Solid Ground is the publication of the Solid Axle Corvette Club. Many modifications and oddities about the early Corvette body appear to be consistent with records showing that body No. 002 served as a test car for production Corvettes, including whether the then-developmental small-block V-8 would work in the two-seater. GM records show body No. 002 was assigned duty as an engineering test vehicle (and assigned No. 3951), and was used in various V-8 design tests, as well as cooling system, 12-volt power, Powerglide and exhaust development. The body that was recently found was removed when car No. 3951 received a new body in May 1955. There are some interesting characterists to the body believed to be that of #002. They include: • The body has a one-piece floor, thought only to exist among the first 12 Corvette bodies. • The fiberglass finish is extremely crude, especially in trunk and behind seats, per early cars. • The right-side inner fender has been reworked to fit a 12-volt battery. • The brake pedal arm and emergency brake have differences from any other Corvette. • Several sets of holes in the firewall indicate multiple placements of heater motor and hoses. • The normal exhaust holes were covered with factory-type materials, and there is evidence that extra exhaust holes were cut in rear fenders, as on 1956-’57 V-8 models. An early photograph known to be of body No. 002 shows two sets of exhaust holes, and they are in the same location on the body of the car in question. The earliest known Corvette still existing is No. 003, which has been restored to show condition and sold at the 2006 Barrett-Jackson Auction in Scottsdale for $1 million dollars. Corvette No. 001 is known to have been destroyed in a burn test by General Motors. I’m hoping that there will be more details about this historic find including how, where and when. Keep in mind as well that we are not talking about a complete Corvette, only the original body. We’ll try to post more details when they are released. Source: Old Cars Weekly
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Our friends at DigitalCorvettes.com landed themselves a big one last night, as the first photos of the Blue Devil/Stingray/Z07 Corvette have finally been posted. Head over to read an interview with photographer Chris Doane, who needed 15-20 minutes just to get in front of supercharged ‘Vette to take some photos.

Blue Devil Corvette 1966 Corvette
Source: DigitalCorvettes.com
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Corvette To Display the Chevrolet Bow-Tie?

by Keith Cornett on October 3, 2006

Z06 with a Bow-TieGM’s VP of Design Ed Welburn was on the weekly Autoline Detroit television show and discussed the increasing design synergy across Chevy models with a common design theme becoming obvious in the coming years. The host pointed out that the gold bow-tie emblem doesn’t appear prominently on the Corvette and Welburn responded by saying this is likely to change. “The gold bowtie will be there,” he said. “There is a strong signature grille that we are developing for all Chevys,” Welburn explained. “We will depart a bit in the grille area […] but that bowtie will be there on every Chevy.” Let me tell you two things that Chevrolet won’t do. There will not be an integration of a “common grille theme” on the Corvette, and second, the Chevrolet Bow-Tie will not be a predominant feature on the Corvette. Look at the photo. Because the Corvette depends on a massive flow of air, the design does not lend itself to having a traditional grille period. So yeah, you can bet your ass there won’t be a common grille theme on the Corvette. For 50 years Corvettes have had their own distinct logo. Everyone already knows that a Corvette is made by Chevrolet. The bow-tie is already integrated into the Corvette logo itself. As you can see at DigitalCorvettes.com, owners are already up in arms against the idea. As the photo illustration from CorvetteConti.com shows, it’s a pretty silly thought and should be dismissed by Tom Wallace immediately. Instead of logos and symbols, GM needs to transfer the attributes that made Corvette great (quality, performance and unique style) to the rest of the Chevrolet lineup. Source: Leftlane News Update
Here is a link to Autoline Detroit where the show can be viewed online.
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Corvette Wins Motorist Choice Award

by Keith Cornett on September 27, 2006

The 2006 Chevrolet CorvetteWe must be coming to the end of the year as I am sensing another round of the obligatory “Car of the Year” awards getting ready to be announced. And while I am not sure half these awards are worth the pixels used to promote them, if a Corvette is selected, than it is my duty as an American to report it! First up! The Motorist Choice Award from IntelliChoice.com and AutoPacific. This is a new award created from the surveys of both organizations that created “a new measurement that speaks to both the hearts and minds of car buyers.” Really, the survey boils downs to owner satisfaction with their vehicle combined with an analysis of the vehicle’s cost of ownership and value. Both items that the Corvette has excelled at in recent years. The Corvette was listed as winning the Sports Car category, but get this. There were 29 winning models by segment and class, 12 classes for cars, 7 classes for SUV’s, 8 truck classes and 1 van class. Here’s what each organization said about the Chevrolet Corvette:

AutoPacific Take on Corvette’s Win – The Chevrolet Corvette wins the first Motorist’s Choice Award® for Sports Cars. It also won top honors among Sports Cars in AutoPacific’s 2006 Vehicle Satisfaction Award®. Corvette’s strong image and vehicle reputation are reinforced by great Fun to Drive attributes like power, acceleration and handling. IntelliChoice Analysis – The Corvette, with plenty of horsepower on tap, is a true American “Triple Crown” winner. Not only a Motorist’s Choice and Vehicle Satisfaction winner, but also a repeat 2006 “Best Overall Value of the Year” winner. 5 year ownership costs are equally amazing at just $45,510, well over $6000 below it’s nearest competitor. The Chevrolet Corvette, as much fun to drive as it is to own!
Yep, the Corvette rocks! But if you’re really interested in automotive awards than make sure you stay tuned as we are surveying the automotive landscape in anticipation of the 2nd Annual CorvetteBlogger.com Car of the Year award to be announced in December. Sources: IntelliChoice.com and AutoPacific
Image: CorvetteImages.com
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The Last Corvette to be Sold at Barrett-Jackson

by Keith Cornett on September 25, 2006

The Last Corvette This announcement is really no big news since the Last Corvette’s restoration was completed in January of this year. As anyone that knows anything about this car knows that the final stop is Scottsdale, Arizona. But for those that don’t know what the Last Corvette is, let me do a quick recap. The Last Corvette is a 1967 Corvette Coupe with a 427-390 hp engine and a 4-Speed transmission. The VIN, #22940 was the last Corvette produced of the 1967 model year production run and therefore the last of the 1963-1967 “Midyear” Corvettes produced at the St. Louis Corvette Assembly Plant on July 12, 1967. The Corvette has been on Pro Team’s radar since the mid 90′s, but it wasn’t until 2005 that a deal was reached to purchase the unrestored car for 10x’s the VIN: $229,240.00 Is the last of the 1967 Corvettes that big of a deal? Some say yes. Terry Michaelis of Pro Team Corvettes, who owns the Last Corvette is fond of saying “Sure they made Corvettes after 1967, but who cares” when promoting this Corvette. And according to Craig Jackson, President of the Barrett-Jackson Auction, “Being the absolute final car of a world-famous model makes this one of the most collectible cars in the world.” Well okay. I’ve never subscribed much to the theory that the end of a model run is worth more because it was the last. I can understand being first, but not last. Comparing apples to apples, is a 67 Coupe with a 427/390 worth more than a 1967 L88 or L89? And something else is bothering me about this Corvette. The whole process seems to me to be a slick marketing event put together by some very smart people for only one reason…to make money. A lot of money. I guess if you are putting $229,420 into a Corvette that needs a frame-off restoration, you need a plan to make that money back. I don’t hold that against Pro Team or anyone else associated with this Corvette. It will sure be interesting to see what this Corvette can do when compared to some real highly collectible Corvettes that should be available this year at Scottsdale. In defense of the Last Corvette’s publicity-hungry run-up to the auction at Barrett-Jackson, Pro Team has teamed up with two charities. The Ronald McDonald House and the Chip Miller Charitable Foundation will both benefit from the sale of the Last Corvette from matched donations, and in the case of the Ronald McDonald House, a Name the Final Bid contest. And finally, not to appear totally negative about the marketing machine that is the Last Corvette, there is one element to this unprecedented sales campaign that I am really interested in. Premiering on December 7, 2006 is a six part documentary which chronicles the Corvette’s history and restoration. That series will air on SPEED and is titled American Muscle Car: The Last Stingray. This is will be a real joy to watch as the production quality should be extremely high and the companies that donated time and service are the tops of the Corvette industry including Naber’s Motors in Texas where the frame-off restoration was completed. More information about the Last Corvette can be found at TheLastCorvette.com
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Overhauled ’57 Corvette

by Keith Cornett on September 19, 2006

Chip FooseOverhaulin’ on the TLC Network is airing a new episode this evening featuring a 1957 Corvette. Like the previous Corvette episode, you’ll either love it or hate it. There doesn’t seem to be any middle road for Chip Foose when it comes to him redesigning the American classic sportscar. I am a fan of the show, but I tend to cringe whenever I see the “A Team” yank an original engine and replace it with a crate motor. No photos have yet surfaced of the Overhauled 1957 Corvette, yet one post on CorvetteForum.com claims the following: “Now that the cat is out of the bag, except for the steering wheel and matching engine trim (you’ll see), the ’57 is very nice and the brakes are to die for.” Tonight’s show is titled “Roadies Stole My ‘Vette!” The 1957 Corvette has been in Carl’s family for 46 years. But Carl and his wife are too busy with their family and business. Meanwhile, the Corvette sits in the garage, waiting for the time and money that will one day restore it to its original “cool”. The new episode will appear Tuesday night at 9pm EST. Source: TLC.com via CorvetteForum.com
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Blue Devil Corvette To Run Nuerburgring?

by Keith Cornett on September 14, 2006

A 2006 Z06 Corvette at NuerburgringSoooo, could this be one of the firsts in a series of shake downs for the Blue Devil Corvette? Johnny O’Connell of Corvette Racing fame (#3 car) posted on his web site that he will be test driving some Corvette street cars around the Nuerburgring, a 12.9 mile closed road track in Germany. And how is Johnny prepping for his week abroad? He’s learning the course by practicing on his X-Box! I love it!! From Johnny O’ Connell’s Website:

Every now and then you get to do something really cool in this job. This Saturday I’m headed over to Germany to run some Corvette street cars around the Nuerburgring. I’ve been there once before back when I drove for Panoz, and did do one lap on the long circuit, but this is going to be several days driving on it and should be a blast. I’m getting to know the circuit beforehand by practicing on X-Box, so hopefully will have it memorized before I get there.
This isn’t something new for Chevrolet. Back in 2005, Jan Magnussen, another Corvette Racing driver tested the soon-to-be-released 2006 Z06 on the famed ‘Ring, posting one of the fastest laps ever recorded at 7:43. Also, I might be mistaken, but I am unaware of Chevrolet testing the regular C6 (Non-Z06) Corvette in Germany either. If I am wrong on that, please let me know. Source: JohnnyOConnell.com
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GM Extends Corvette’s Warranty Coverage

by Keith Cornett on September 6, 2006

The new GM Warranty websiteEarlier this year, GM’s Vice Chairman asked readers of the FastLane blog for input on their turnaround. Overwhelmingly, readers pointed to the quality issue as a major concern when buying a GM car or truck. What is telling about GM’s turnaround is the fact that they are listening to their customers and are addressing their concerns. Today GM announced that beginning with the 2007 model year, it will be extending its powertrain warranty in the United States and Canada to five years or 100,000 miles. Previously the warranty was three years or 36,000 miles. The warranty is transferable and has no deductible. GM is also extending the roadside assistance and courtesy transportation programs to five years or 100,000 miles. These changes apply to Corvette as well as every passenger car and truck across GM’s eight divisional brands. In addition to the powertrain warranty, GM still provides three year or 36,000 mile bumper to bumper warranty for the Corvette and other Chevrolets, GMCs, Pontiacs and Saturns. Buicks and Cadillacs get a four year or 50,000 mile bumper to bumper warranty. GM will begin promoting the new warranties during Thursday night’s NFL season opener between the Pittsburgh Steelers and Miami Dolphins. Also, a dedicated web site (www.gm.com/warranty) is available for you to read up on the coverage. Source: GM Fastlane Blog | GM Warranty
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Crikey! Corvette Sting Ray Getting A Bad Rap

by Keith Cornett on September 5, 2006

Since the untimely death of Australian Zoo director Steve Irwin at the hands, er, barb of a stingray was announced Sunday, I knew the comparisons of fish and Vette were bound to happen. As the Beach Boys say, fuel injected Sting Rays are only deadly when you’re a 413. But this was a freak accident and for someone like Steve Irwin who faced death more than once, at least he died doing something he loved. So leave it to the Jalopnik’s to come up with Steve Irwin’s Revenge, a video of a classic Sting Ray loosing it on the strip when racing against a Dodge Viper. Their reasoning? Steve loved reptiles more than a flappy fish. Well, I concur on their final wish. Rest in peace, Steve.

Source: Jalopnik.com | Google Video
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2007 Convertible Price Increase On The Way?

by Keith Cornett on August 30, 2006

2007 Corvette ConvertibleCorvette Forum dealer Ken Fichtner posted a message today that an interim price change is coming on selected Chevrolet vehicles including the 2007 Corvette Convertible. Orders entered into VOMS on or before August 27, 2006 are price protected. Unfortunately, there is no indication on exactly how much the price increase will be. Here is the full text of the post: Subject: 2007 Chevrolet Interim Price Change Effective 8/28/2006
Message #: CHF20060056 Chevrolet will announce revised 2007 model year Suggested Retail prices effective with vehicles produced on or after August 28, 2006. The revised Suggested Retail prices will affect the Avalanche, Aveo, Cobalt, Corvette Convertible, HHR, Malibu, Monte Carlo, Impala, Uplander, Trailblazer, Equinox, Tahoe, Suburban and Express. Dealer invoice amounts will increase accordingly. Dealer discounts remain unchanged. Dealer price schedules will be available in GM Dealerworld under Sales &/Or F&I Tabs effective August 28, 2006. Reference administrative message #VSF20040006 (dated February 26, 2004) for more information regarding this web site. All qualified bona fide sold retail orders entered in VOMS on or before August 27,2006 and delivered to the original customer after that date will be price protected. These units will be invoiced at prices in effect at the date of production; however, the dealer open account will automatically be credited for the price increase once the unit has been delivered. Generally, fleet orders are invoice price protected (i.e., bid center FBC order types, VQ orders). All other fleet orders will be price protected according to the bona fide sold retail price protection policy above. Refer to the price protection effective date on the invoice. Source: CorvetteForum.com
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