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Friday’s Featured Corvettes For Sale

by Keith Cornett on December 14, 2007

If you are looking to make a deal on a new or classic Corvette before the holidays. this is probably the last week to do it. Below we are featuring six of the over 500 Corvettes available at our classified ads website, www.VetteFinders.com.

1960 Corvette Convertible For Sale 1967 Corvette Coupe For Sale 1974 Corvette T-Top For Sale
1960 Convertible
$55,900
1967 Coupe
Email for Price
1974 T-Top
$13,500
 
1996 Corvette Coupe For Sale 2003 Corvette Hardtop For Sale 2007 Corvette Convertible For Sale
1996 Coupe
$15,990
2003 Z06
$34,000
2007 Convertible
$49,995
Selling Your Corvette? Now is the time and VetteFinders.com is the place to reach more qualified Corvette Buyers. Corvette Classified Ads are only $25 and run for 3 months. You can post unlimited photos and you have access to make any changes at any time.
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VetteFinders.com Related:
11/02/07: Friday’s Featured Corvettes For Sale Technorati Tags:
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Corvette Racing Will Return To ALMS GT1 in 2008

by Keith Cornett on December 13, 2007

Corvette Racing will return to the ALMS in 2008Whew! Corvette Racing announced that they will be returning both factory backed GT1 Corvette C6.R’s to the American Le Mans Series in 2008. In addition to the ALMS 12 race series, the team will be competing at the 24 hours of Le Mans. Since the team returned to the track in 1999, they’ve won seven consecutive GT1 Manufacturers and Team Championships, plus six straight Drivers championships in the ALMS. Corvette Racing currently owns the ALMS record for class victories at 57, plus 40 1-2 finishes.

“Corvette Racing was conceived as a long-term program to showcase the performance, technology, and value of Chevrolet’s world-class sports car,” said Mark Kent, director of GM Racing. “Since the team’s competition debut in 1999, Corvette Racing’s success in top-tier road racing has produced a strong return on our investment, paying dividends in marketing, engineering, technology transfer, personnel development and other areas of our business. Corvette is now a performance icon that’s recognized around the world, and Corvette Racing’s continued participation in the ALMS and the 24 Hours of Le Mans will be an important element in the global celebration of GM’s 100th anniversary in 2008.” “Our decision to compete in all 12 rounds of the ALMS schedule in 2008 reflects our commitment to our sponsors, our suppliers, and to Corvette enthusiasts worldwide,” said Steve Wesoloski, GM Racing Road Racing Group manager. “There is a reason why thousands of Corvette owners attend Corvette Corrals at ALMS events and why the autograph line at Corvette Racing is the longest in the ALMS paddock: Racing is an integral part of Corvette’s history and heritage, and we are continuing that tradition.” “Experience teaches us that motorsports is cyclical, and the GT1 category is currently in transition,” Wesoloski observed. “Would we like to see more competition in GT1 in the ALMS? Absolutely! But in the absence of season-long competition, we are absolutely committed to controlling our own destiny. We are pushing hard to develop our chassis and powertrain, to refine our race strategy, and to continuously improve every element of the program. We know that the competition at Le Mans will be intense, and we will use the ALMS series to hone the race cars, the drivers, and the team to prepare for it.”
Corvette Racing will be testing two new Compuware Corvette C6.R race cars in February. The 12 race series kicks off March 15th at the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring. Related:
Corvettes to Compete in ALMS GT2 Class in 2008 Technorati Tags:
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Corvette’s 2008 Indy Pace Car Unveiling Date Set

by Keith Cornett on December 12, 2007

The Corvette has been chosen yet again to pace the world’s greatest race, the Indianapolis 500. On December 27th the curtain will be raised on the 2008 design and you can be there as part of a National Corvette Museum fundraiser. The NCM was given 19 tickets to the event and they are being sold for $100 each. The ticket admits you to the Indiana Convention Center/RCA Dome in Indianapolis to witness the unveiling of the newest Corvette pace car. The event also includes a Chevrolet Exhibit with displays of a Chevrolet Corvette Convertible, a Camaro Convertible and of course the 2008 Indianapolis Pace Car. There is also mention of a surprise display called the Flying Corvette. We will have to wait and see what that is all about. Finally lunch will be provided to participants in the ballroom, which is your chance to “mix and mingle” with representatives from GM and Chevrolet. Tickets to the event can be reserved at the National Corvette Museum’s website. Click here for details. Related:
Corvette Z06 Chosen to Pace 50th Daytona 500 in 2008 Technorati Tags:
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Decoding a Corvette’s V8 Casting Numbers and Engine Stamps

by Keith Cornett on December 11, 2007

Back in September I wrote about how documentation was the must-have option when buying a classic Corvette. That article focused on mostly the paper trail: dealer invoices, build sheets and tank stickers. Today the focus is on the engine and the clues available for verifying authenticity. While the term “Matching Numbers” in its simplist form is various serial numbers and codes located on key parts and their relationship to a particular year of Corvette, it’s the engine block that is the most important part of the matching numbers equation. Unfortunately, as Corvette values rise, so do your chances of buying a Corvette with altered numbers being passed off as an original. As my favorite mantra goes when purchasing a Corvette, knowledge is power, and the more you can learn about documenting a Corvette prior to purchase, the less likely you will get burned with buying a Corvette of questionable lineage.

A series of codes and stamps are located on the engine block that will allow you to identify it as being manufactured specifically for a Corvette. There are dates of manufacture and the engine’s original application if you just know where to look. As the year’s progressed and engine options increased, the numbering and casting system obviously changed and became more specific. For the examples provided, I will be referring to the 327 ci 300 hp small block V8 in my 1966 Corvette.

Chevrolet Smallblock V8 Casting number and engine stamping locations 1966 Corvette 327 ci V8 Engine Casting Number 1966 Corvette 327 ci V8 Engine Stamp

Casting Numbers
The casting number is a sequence consisting of raised numbers that was cast into the engine block when it was made. What’s a bit tricky here is that casting numbers on Corvette blocks can also be found on other engine blocks made by GM. Casting Numbers are important to the engine documentation process because certain numbers were used for Corvettes and some were not. Also, the numbers are specific to the size of engine in the Corvette. 283′s, 327′s and 427′s all had their own casting numbers specific to individual years, so for the process of documenting a Corvette engine, the casting number will be used to confirm that that block was used in a Corvette and that it was available during the same year the Corvette was manufactured, and finally, it was unique to a specific engine size. The casting number on Chevy V8′s is located on the drivers side of the engine where the block is connected to the bellhousing. It can be a bit hard to see with the ignition shielding in place but the numbers are fairly large. The casting number on my 1966 is 3858174 which is identified as a 327 ci V8 block. That block casting number was also used in 1964-67 passenger cars including the Chevelle and Camaro as well as Chevrolet trucks.

Casting Dates
The cast date symbolizes the date of manufacture of the block. Dates are coded beginning with a letter representing the month. Letters began with “A” for January through “L” for December. The next section of digits represents the day of the month and is either 1 or 2 digits in length. The final single digit represents the year. Corvette casting dates only show the single digit for the year. If the block contains two digits for the year, then it was a block manufactured at the Tonawanda engine plant and therefore is not a Corvette block (Corvette engines were almost exclusively built in Flint, Michigan). Cast dates on small block V8′s can be found on the passenger side of flange where the block is connected to the bellhousing. I found this number difficult to locate. On 1965-67 big blocks, the cast date is located on the passenger side of the block where the starter is attached. The cast date on the block in my 1966 is “E 5 6″, which decoded stands for May 5, 1966. If you are trying to document an engine, the casting number would confirm the size of the engine and its intended recipient, and the date code would confirm that the block was used in Corvettes.

Engine Stamping
Engine stampings evolved in the early years of the Chevrolet V8 engine. In 1955-56, it was simply a continuous serial number, but one that didn’t match the serial number of the Corvette. It was then followed with F for Flint, where the Corvette engine was manufactured and then the year (F55 or F56). The final two letters indicated the original application of the engine. Application Codes usually indicated engine size, type of fuel delivery (Injection or carburetion) and transmission. As engine options grew, so did the number of application suffix codes. In 1957, the serial number was dropped and instead the stamp contained the letter F for Flint, a three to four number sequence for month and day of assembly and then the two letter engine suffix code. Beginning in 1960 the stamp included the serial number of the car it was installed in. The 327 engine in my Corvette contains the following number sequences: 6122891 F0518HE. Decoded, the first sequence is 6 for the year (66) and then the VIN sequence of 122891. The second stamp decodes F for the Flint Plant, May 18 is the engine assembly date and the HE suffix code stands for a 327 ci 300 hp with a manual transmission.

So there you have the basics of decoding engine numbers for the purpose of documentation. Please note that there are some exceptions to the information contained above. In 1965 it is said that there was a shortage of 327 blocks from the Flint plant, so Chevrolet used some engine blocks from Tonawanda. Those engines would have a T instead of F on the stamp, as well as the full year in the cast date. There are several publications that contain a breakdown of engine codes and sequences. The NCRS also provides a publication that details how engines were stamped and therefore, may help you identify restamped engines.

Related:
The Must-Have Option When Buying A Classic Corvette
Five Factors That Drive Corvette Values – Options

 

November 2008 Corvette Sales; 2008 Corvette Price Increase

by Keith Cornett on December 7, 2007

General Motors released the Corvette sales figures for November 2008. Production over the last couple of months has averaged around 2,450 which is about 300 units less than 2006. Total calendar sales (January through November) just broke the 3,000 mark at 30,771. Production in 2007 continues to lag last year’s production by 8%.

Month Calendar Year-to-Date
Month 2007 2006 % Change Months 2007 2006 % Change
January 2,234 2,579 -16.8% Jan-Jan 2,234 2,579 -16.8%
February 2,784 3,058 -9.0% Jan-Feb 5,018 5,637 -11.0%
March 3,158 3,655 -16.7% Jan-Mar 8,176 9,292 -12.0%
April 3,227 3,516 -0.6% Jan-Apr 11,403 12,808 -11.0%
May 3,300 3,317 -4.3% Jan-May 14,703 16,125 -8.8%
June 3,055 2,938 0.1% Jan-Jun 17,758 19,063 -6.8%
July 2,377 2,794 -11.4% Jan-Jul 20,135 21,857 -7.9%
August 2,877 2,990 -3.8% Jan-Aug 23,012 24,842 -7.4%
September 2,837 3,056 -3.5% Jan-Sept 25,849 27,903 -7.4%
October 2,484 2,761 -13.5% Jan-Oct 28,333 30,664 -7.6%
November 2,438 2,773 -12.1% Jan-Nov 30,771 33,437 -8.0%
On a related note, both Corvette Conti and the Corvette Blog have reported a slight increase in 2008 Corvette prices. Coupes and Convertibles are going up by $115 bringing the prices to $46,225 and $54,565 respectively. A destination charge of $825 is included in these figures.
Source:
General Motors Related:
October 2008 Corvette Sales
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Back in October when the new 2009 Corvette ZR-1 was let off its chain for a couple of hot laps around Monterey’s Laguna Seca raceway, we were able to see the copilot holding what appeared to be a video camera. Now the good folks at Corvette Quarterly, the official publication of Corvette, has uploaded the video so that you too can experience the estimated 650 ponies from the new supercharged LS-9.

Click to view the 2009 Corvette ZR-1
Damn, that car is fast. From the beginning, Corvette Racing’s Johnny O’Connell gets on it and doesn’t let go until the end. Thanks, Corvette Quarterly! That was fun!
Source:
Corvette Quarterly Related:
Video: Corvette ZR1 at Monterey’s Laguna Seca
More Corvette ZR-1 Video from Laguna Seca
Corvette ZR1 Video: Manual Transmission and Other Observations
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Corvette Makes Car & Driver’s 2008 10 Best Cars List

by Keith Cornett on December 4, 2007

The 2008 Chevrolet Corvette ConvertibleIf it seems like Corvette is always making Car and Driver’s annual 10 Best Cars List, that’s because it has earned a spot on the coveted list for seven years straight. Calling the Corvette a poster car for continual development, the new 2008 Corvette boasts 22 significant updates over last year’s entry. Car and Driver’s staff focuses more on the improvements they say are dynamic to the driving experience. While they liked the upgrades to interior, especially the wrap-around leather option, it’s the upgrades to the steering, manual shifter and the clutch that won them over for the seventh straight year. Oh and let’s not forget the fact that Corvette’s mid-cycle upgrade included the new 6.2 liter LS3 engine that expands the horsepower envelope from 400 to 430. Everyone loves more ponies and the 2008 Corvette delivers. Car and Driver calls the Corvette one of the world’s best high performance buys. Here is the full list of cars that made Car and Driver’s 10 Best List for 2008: BMW 3- Series
Cadillac CTS
Chevrolet Corvette
Chevrolet Malibu
Honda Accord
Honda Fit
Mazda MX-5
Mazdaspeed 3
Porsche Boxter/Cayman
Volkswagen GTI
Source:
Car and Driver Related:
Kelley Blue Book Includes 2008 Corvette Z06 in Top 10 Resale List
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In 1965, as in previous years, General Motors and Chevrolet were touring the country showing off their latest products to the masses at car shows and the company-sponsored motoramas.

Marketing was concerned that the Corvette, in its third year of the fabled midyear body style, might be looking a bit aged and so they set out to create a display that became a mechanical marvel.

Selecting a 1965 Corvette Coupe from the assembly line, the car was shipped to a specialty display making company where it was fully disassembled and then operated on to create the one-of-a-kind Corvette display we see in the video.

Mounting the body to elevator arms, the coupe would rise off its chassis, exposing the car’s running gear. The frame was painted in bright yellow while the engine, transmission and other mechanical parts were finished in red. Cutouts were created to display the inner workings of the car. A series of motors would operate moving components of the car allowing visitors to see exactly how the 375 horsepower fuel injected 327ci was powered.

After its life on the show circuit, whereabouts of the car were unknown. It was found in South Africa in the mid ’90′s and returned to the United States where is was purchased a short time later by Al Wiseman.

This 1965 Corvette is unique in many regards, especially considering the fact that it contained the last of the fuel injected engines. With only 4 miles showing on the odometer, it truly is a time capsule.

Back at the auction, bidding was steady and deliberate and finally the last bid of $640,000 was called. With the addition of the 10% buyers commission, total price of the 1965 Chevrolet Corvette Cutaway Autorama Display was $704,000. The buyer of this unique Corvette was Detroit’s Showdown Muscle Cars.


Source:
RM Auctions

Related:
Video: Matched Set of 1953/2003 Corvettes sell for $390,500
Video: Zora’s 1955 Corvette Sold By RM Auctions for $134,750

 

Here is something that you don’t see everyday and in the words of the auctioneer, it’s probably something that will never be duplicated! We’re talking of course about the matched set of Corvettes that was sold at Saturday’s RM Auctions Al Wiseman Collection in Tarpon Springs, Florida. Al had a 1953 Corvette with the serial number of #39. When the 50th Anniversary Corvettes were produced in 2003, Al lobbied GM quite hard for about a year and was successful in buying serial number #39, which was doing duty as a test mule. Topping off the collection was a commemorative 1953 Corvette pedal car from Pedal Cars USA produced to celebrate the Corvette’s golden anniversary. This unique Corvette pedal car also is number #39 in its series.

The 1953 Corvette has been in Al’s collection for around 5 years and has just completed a full concours quality restoration. Al was no stranger to 1953 Corvettes. Back in 2002 he teamed up with Chip Miller of Carlisle Productions to restore serial #158. That Corvette, dubbed “Restoration Celebration”, was restored to better than perfect condition and the proceeds from the sale of that car were donated to charity.

Interestingly, the sale of both of these 1953 Corvettes ended up in the hands of the same buyer…Terry Michaelis of Proteam Corvettes.

And while the buyer and seller of both 1953 Corvettes remained the same, what has changed in the last five years is the prices commanded for the first year of America’s Sports Cars. #158 was purchased for $170,000 in 2002 while 1953 Corvette #39 brought in $390,500 just five years later.

Yes, this auction of the 1953 Corvette had the bonus of a serial numbers-matching 2003 50th Anniversary Corvette Roadster, as well as the kids commemorative pedal car, but it was the 1953 Corvette that drove this sale home.


Source:
RM Auctions

Related:
Video: Zora’s 1955 Corvette Sold By RM Auctions for $134,750

 

RM Auctions was in the Tampa Bay area this weekend to auction off the collection of antique and classic cars belonging to noted automotive collector Al Wiseman. Included in the auction was this very significant 1955 Corvette Roadster that belonged to Zora Arkus-Duntov, Corvette’s first Chief Engineer.

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