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Corvette Assembly Plant Planning Additional Down Time

by Keith Cornett on September 8, 2009

The Corvette Assembly Plant in Bowling Green is planning additional furloughs for workers in the coming weeks. The plant will be idled during the weeks of 9/28-10/05 and 10/12-10/19.

I wrote last week how August Corvette sales were at the lowest levels since the start of the automotive recession. Let’s hope these additional downtimes are preventative and designed to keep inventories low and not indicative of 2010 model year sales.


Source:
CorvetteConti.com

RIP: Corvette C6.R Chassis #003 Dies in Transporter Fire

by Keith Cornett on September 5, 2009

RIP: Corvette C6.R Chassis #003 Dies in Transporter Fire

A Corvette C6.R formerly raced by the Pratt & Miller Corvette Racing team perished in massive transporter fire. Chassis #003 was owned and run by Luc Alphand Aventures, a French-based GT1 motorsports team. The Corvette appeared at Le Mans this year but retired after a major crash.

The team was on its way to the Abli for the upcoming round of the FFSA GT Championship when the fire occurred, consuming the transporter, the car and much of the team’s equipment and spare parts.

Luc Alphand Aventures also owns chassis #004 and will work hard to get it ready for the remaining rounds of the LMS, FFSA GT, and FIA GT championships.

This car was built in 2006 and was run by the factory Corvette Racing team as the #3 car in the ALMS (#63 at Le Mans) that year, as well as a couple races in 2007. Luc Alphand Adventures purchased the car in 2008 and has run it successfully in many of Europe’s great sports car racing series.

The car had four wins to its credit: ALMS @ Road America in 2006, LMS @ Catalunya & Spa in 2008, and FFSA GT @ Nogaro in 2009.


About the Author:
This blog post was written by Chris Draper.
Check out his website at Corvette Info Center



Related:
PK Carsport Corvette C6.R Wins the 24 Hours of Spa
2009 Le Mans 24: Corvette Racing Scores Sixth GT1 Class Win

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Transformer's Sideswipe Concept on Display at the Corvette Museum

One of the many “celebrity” Corvettes making an appearance this weekend at the National Corvette Museum’s 15th Anniversary Celebration is GM’s Corvette Stingray Concept, better known as Sideswipe from this summer’s movie blockbuster Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen.

The Corvette Stingray Concept was heavily influenced by the original 1959 Corvette Stingray Racer which will be displayed this weekend at the Museum as well. The concept made its public debut at the Chicago Auto Show n February along with four other Chevy “Autobots” who appeared in the second installment of the Transformers movie.

“In honor of the 50th anniversary of the original Corvette Sting Ray concept racer, GM Design created an all new Sting Ray Vision that is a homage to the original 1959 concept and continues the long tradition of Corvette Concept Cars,” said Harlan Charles, Chevrolet Corvette Marketing Manager. “This futuristic Sting Ray vision of America’s performance icon was featured as Sideswipe in Transformers 2,” he added.

The Corvette Concept will be unveiled tomorrow on “Corvette Boulevard” inside the National Corvette Museum’s new 47,000 square foot expansion area. The car will be displayed at the Museum until September 9th.

Transformer's Sideswipe Concept on Display at the Corvette Museum


Source:
National Corvette Museum

Related:
[PICS] Transformer’s Corvette Stingray Concept Revealed in Chicago
Corvette Museum to Display Historic Corvette Concepts
Corvette Museum to Raffle One-of-a-Kind 2010 Grand Sport at the 15th Anniversary Celebration

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Indiana Corvette Caravan Gathers at the Indy Motor Speedway

by Keith Cornett on September 4, 2009

Indiana Corvette Caravans Gather at Indy Motor Speedway

Many of the Corvette Caravans that are or have already converged on Bowling Green took a circuitous route in getting to the NCM which allowed owners to see some historic landmarks and show off their love of America’s sports car. The Indiana Caravan was no exception as members took a some parade laps around the Indianapolis Motor Speedway prior to hitting Interstate 65 for the trip South to Kentucky.

These pictures come from Jeff Wagner, a regular visitor to CorvetteBlogger.com. He is pictured below with his wife Renee and his Nassau Blue C5 Corvette:

Indiana Corvette Caravan Indiana Corvette Caravan Indiana Corvette Caravan
Indiana Corvette Caravan Indiana Corvette Caravan  

Thanks for the pictures, Jeff!


Related:
[VIDEO] Corvette Caravans Arrive in Bowling Green
[VIDEO] National Corvette Caravan Stops in Tampa
Corvette Museum to Display Historic Corvette Concepts
Corvette Museum to Raffle One-of-a-Kind 2010 Grand Sport at the 15th Anniversary Celebration

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[VIDEO] Corvette Caravans Arrive in Bowling Green

by Keith Cornett on September 3, 2009

Here is a group of Corvettes from North and Central Texas, Oklahoma and the Gulf States arriving in Bowling Green. The video was shot from the Exit 26 overpass which is just a couple miles south of Exit 28 on I65 where the National Corvette Museum is located.

Check out Mark Leevan’s Corvette Examiner for more caravan videos.

 

[VIDEO] Corvette Racing’s Oliver Gavin Recaps Mosport

by Keith Cornett on September 2, 2009

Want to get to know Oliver Gavin? You can follow him on Facebook and Twitter

 

August 2009 Corvette Sales

by Keith Cornett on September 2, 2009

Corvette sales have sunk to their lowest point since the beginning of the automotive recession which started the second half of 2008. In August, GM delivered 746 Corvettes, down from 966 in July and -82% off the 4,242 Corvettes delivered in the same time period a year ago. For the calendar year (Jan-Aug) there have been 9,210 Corvettes delivered, a decline of -56.3% from 2008 sales of 21,066.

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[VIDEO] National Corvette Caravan Stops in Tampa

by Keith Cornett on September 1, 2009

National Corvette Caravan Stops in Tampa

The Florida leg of the 2009 National Corvette Caravan kicked off their cruise to Bowling Green, Kentucky for this weekend’s 15th Anniversary Celebration at the National Corvette Museum. The Florida Caravan started in South Florida this morning and broke off into two groups with one going through Orlando and the other coming up the west coast to Tampa.

About 100 Corvettes were gathered at Ferman Chevrolet in Tampa this afternoon before heading North. We met with a few of the members and spoke with Ernie Zager who is the Captain of the Florida leg. According to Zager, the Florida caravan will stop tonight just a few miles south of the Georgia border in Lake City, Florida where they will be guests at a barbeque by Bruce and Becky Glueck of Glueck Chevrolet.

Tomorrow morning the group will make their way to Road Atlanta for some parade laps or high speed passes around the Petit Le Mans course. From there, the Florida caravan will drive over to Kennessaw, Georgia where they will meet up with the Georgia Caravan at a Hooters restaurant for dinner. Both groups will spend the night in Kennessaw before making their way to Bowling Green on Thursday.

The Museum has a full slate of Corvette fun planned for the estimated 5,000 attendees that will be in Bowling Green for the 15th Anniversary Celebration. Festivities will include the Corvette Hall of Fame, seminars, historic video presentations, road tours and other grand activities including the official ribbon-cutting for the Museum’s new areas.

Related:
Corvette Museum to Display Historic Corvette Concepts
Corvette Museum to Raffle One-of-a-Kind 2010 Grand Sport at the 15th Anniversary Celebration

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Corvette Ad Watch: 1961 Corvette Catalog Shoot

by Keith Cornett on September 1, 2009

1961 Corvette Catalog Shoot

Former Chevy ad man Jim Bernadin gives us the details from this classic photo shoot for the 1961 Corvette Catalog Folder.

This is the cover of the Corvette Catalog Folder for 1961. It was shot at the GM Proving Grounds near Milford, Michigan. Shooting there was a real challenge because there was so much security involved. Arrangements to shoot there had to be made far in advance and approved by about a hundred people–or so it seamed. Each person to be there had to have been cleared in advance. There was always a wait when everybody arrived at the gate office and had to have their identity checked and approved once more. Then you had to have a special driver to get you around the facility. Only these guys knew all the regulations and could keep you from trouble. Your pre- selected location had to be cleared and closed to other traffic. Someone from Chevrolet had to be with you and responsible for all you did. You were not allowed to see into any of the other divisions buildings.

Our location was a good one in that it didn’t look like the proving grounds. It could have been almost any smaller road in America. The person standing with the camera is Warren Winstanley’s assistant. Warren was the photographer for this and all the other shots in the catalog. The two fellows in the car were models. The rear view was on the cover because it represented the newest thing about the Corvette. Not only was the styling new but there was a real trunk for the first time. The rear styling gave a good look at what the Stingray would be like in a couple of years but nobody knew that at the time. The car isn’t really moving but the illusion of some dust was created by throwing some cement powder at just the right time. I even helped with that on occasion. I had all the fake rally signs made back at our office along with the ’61 sign that eliminated the need for other cover copy. This and the picture to follow are often used in publications about Corvettes. I wish I could remember who wrote the copy–maybe Vic Olsen.

Click here for a larger version. Visit Old Chevy Ads for page two of the 1961 Corvette Catalog Folder.


Source:
Old Chevy Ads

Related:
Corvette Ad Watch: 1953 Corvette is “America’s Sensational Sports Car”
Corvette Ad Watch: Vintage 1960 Corvette Poster

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Corvette Museum to Display Historic Corvette Concepts

by Keith Cornett on August 31, 2009

Corvette Museum to Display Historic Corvette Concepts

Visitors to the National Corvette Museum’s 15th Anniversary Celebration are in for a real treat as General Motors will be loaning for display four Corvette Concept cars from its Heritage Collection. The four Corvettes to be displayed are the 1961 Mako Shark Concept, 1965 Manta Ray Concept, 1973 Aerovette Concept and the 1959 Stingray Racer.

The four cars will be displayed in the new Exhibit Hall, part of the multi-million dollar expansion that was completed this summer. The temporary display begins Tuesday, September 1st and continues through Wednesday, September 9th.

Here are the four One-of-a-Kind Corvettes that will be displayed at the NCM:


Mako Shark – 1961 Mako Shark XP-755 The Mako Shark was designed by Larry Shinoda under the direction of GM Design head Bill Mitchell in 1961 as a concept for future Chevrolet Corvettes. In keeping with the name, the streamlining, pointed snout and other detailing were partly inspired by the look of that very fast fish. The “Mako Shark” was very similar to the 1963 production Corvette it inspired, with some alterations. These included adding two more brake lights in the rear (six total), making the nose of the car longer and more pointed, creating a clear glass roof with a periscope-like rear-view mirror and remodeling the interior.

1961 (Mako) Shark XP-755 1961 (Mako) Shark XP-755


Manta Ray – 1969 Manta Ray In 1969 development began on the Manta Ray, created through a transformation of the Mako Shark II primarily from the cockpit to the rear of this elaborate car. Only the tapered “boat tail” motif remained with the addition of a new and considerably longer rear end in place of the abrupt duck tail. During the winter of 1969-70, the Manta Ray underwent subtle additional changes. These were the last changes to a dream car that had since become reality.

1969 Manta Ray 1969 Manta Ray 1969 Manta Ray


AeroVette – 1973 Four Rotor XP-882 AeroVette In 1976, the 1973 Corvette 4-Rotor concept was taken out of storage and renamed the Aerovette. The double rotary engine was replaced with a transversally mounted 400 CID V8 engine. Bill Mitchell, Vice President of Design, lobbied for the Aerovette as the next Corvette and GM chairman and CEO, Thomas Murphy actually approved the Aerovette for 1980 production. In the end, management decided that they were selling every fiberglass bodied, front engine V8 “traditional” Corvette they could build, so why make a huge risky investment in a mid-engine car. The Aerovette project was cancelled.

1973 Four Rotor XP-882 AeroVette 1973 Four Rotor XP-882 AeroVette 1973 Four Rotor XP-882 AeroVette


Stingray Racer – 1959 Stingray Racer XP-87 Bill Mitchell wanted to build a Corvette racecar capable of beating Europe’s best. With an AMA ban on manufacturer-sponsored racing, the project had to be privately financed and the design could not have any recognizable association with Chevrolet. With Mitchell’s own time and money heavily invested into the project, he contracted Larry Shinoda to assist in the development of the revolutionary concept. Combining the 1957 SS chassis with the new fiberglass body resulted in a sleek and muscular roadster. Mitchell’s Stingray was completed in 1959 with the engineering help of Zora Arkus-Duntov. Accomplished SCCA driver Dick Thompson raced the Stingray and piloted it to two consecutive class championships. At the end of the 1960 season, Mitchell retired the Stingray from competition, detuned it, added a full windshield and passenger seat, drove it on the street and exhibited it as an experimental show car.

1959 Stingray Racer XP-87 1959 Stingray Racer XP-87 1959 Stingray Racer XP-87


Sources:
National Corvette Museum
Photos via Remarkable Corvettes

Related:
Corvette Museum to Raffle One-of-a-Kind 2010 Grand Sport at the 15th Anniversary Celebration

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