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Z06 Best Bang for Buck

by Keith Cornett on September 29, 2005

duPont Registry names list of Best Exotic Cars. Most cost six figures. One costs seven figures, but the Corvette Z06, at $65,800 is named “Best Bang for the Buck”. You know you are in good company with names like Bugatti, Lamborghini and Bentley. Now add Chevy to the list. At $65,800 the Corvette Z06 seems out of place next to these other makes costing several times its price. But when you look at the numbers: 505 hp, zero to 60 under 4 seconds – the Z06 is right at home. While the Corvette is the least expensive car to make the list of Best Exotics, the most expensive (and probably most exotic) is the Bugatti Veyron. The 1,001 horsepower zero-60 time of 2.4 seconds costs $1.2 million. Other cars to make the list include the BMW M6 and the Rolls Royce Phantom. Click here for the article at

2005 Corvette Production Stats

by Keith Cornett on September 27, 2005

The first production year for the C6 officially came to a close on September 8, when the last 2005 Corvette came off the end of the assembly line. A total of 37,372 cars were built during the model year, with no ZO6 production. Coupes proved to be more popular than ever with 72 percent of total production and convertibles taking the remaining 28 percent. The most popular exterior color was Black (21.4 percent), followed by Light Tarnish Silver (18.4 percent), Victory Red (15 percent), Luxo Blue (10.1 percent), Magnetic Red (9.1 percent), Sunset Orange (8 percent), Millennium Yellow (5.4 percent), White (5.3 percent), Precision Red (3.5 percent), Velocity Yellow (2 percent) and Red Jewel (1.9 percent). Most convertible customers opted for the black top (86 percent), with only 11.3 percent choosing beige followed by 2.7 percent who chose gray. Interior color options are as follows: Ebony 60.9 percent, Light Cashmere 24.5 percent, Steel Gray 10 percent, and Cobalt Red 4.6 percent. Once again proving most popular, automatic transmissions accounted for 60 percent of the cars. Six-speed manual transmissions accounted for 17 percent, while 23 percent opted for the six-speed with the Z51 option. Export cars, other than Canada and Mexico, totaled 4.7 percent. Other popular options included: Memory Package (92 percent), Passenger and Driver Reclining Bucket Seats (98.4 percent), Telescoping Steering Wheel (87.3 percent), Polished Aluminum Wheels (72.5 percent), OnStar (52.5 percent), Heads Up Display (92 percent), and XM Satellite Radio (58.6 percent).

Ecklers Video Series

by Keith Cornett on September 26, 2005

Our friends at Ecklers Corvette Parts called us last week to tell us about the launch of their how-to video series. The videos are designed to help Corvette owners understand how easy it is to install, upgrade or repair parts on their own Corvettes. The first videos in the series will provide C6 Corvette owners with step-by-step procedures for installing three brand-name aftermarket exhaust systems: B&B, Borla and Corsa. The 10 minute videos culminate with hosts Mike Wilson and Randy Irwin starting the Corvettes and revving the engines so viewers can hear the sound of each upgraded exhaust system. We think this is a great idea and is part of the natural evolution of the Corvette parts retailers to allow potential buyers the opportunity to see and hear the finished system, as well as help novice backyard mechanics like myself the opportunity to observe the install to see if it is a true do-it-yourself job. Here are the first videos in the Ecklers series: B&B C6 Route 66 System
Borla Stinger II Sport S-Type
Corsa Sport Exhaust System We hope these videos prove to be a success and we would like to see more, not only for the new model vettes, but classics as well. Hey Mike, how about a video on restoring the foam and seat covers for my 66 convertible?

Corvette Barn Find

by Keith Cornett on September 25, 2005

It seems that everyone has heard the story of the old Corvette stored in a barn for years because the owner thought Vettes were a good investment. In fact, there was a county song a couple of years ago from David Ball called “Riding with Private Malone” that talks about the mother that lost her son in Vietnam and so she kept his 66 Vette in a barn. Corvette Fever keeps the barn car dream alive with an article documenting the find of 5 rare Corvettes that were stored for over 20 years. The Corvettes were in an old service station and barn in Brooks, California. All the cars were hauled up here from Southern California 20-plus years ago to be tucked away as investments by a fellow who’s now in his eighties. The Corvettes included a 56, two ’63 split-window coupes, and two ’67 coupes. The blue ’56 was a hot rod. The red ’63 was a numbers-matching 75K-mile car with a 250hp engine, Powerglide, power steering, power brakes, and windows. The green ’63 was a numbers-matching 300hp/327, with an add on fuel-injection unit. The silver ’67 was a 51K-mile, original-paint, numbers-matching, 327/300hp four-speed car. The yellow ’67 was a 327/300hp numbers-matching automatic with 48K miles, A/C, and power steering. When the family decided to sell them, Charlie Lillard was there within the hour. He was able to reach an agreement with the owners to buy them all, including the parts they had accumulated over the years. All the cars have now found new homes. Four of the five Corvettes ended up going to Musclecars Northwest in Renton, Washington. I have to say that the adventure of finally buying the Corvettes was well worth the effort.

Corvette Values: 1978 Coupe

by Keith Cornett on September 21, 2005

GS From Oklahoma submitted this 1978 Coupe to Corvette Values: 1978 Corvette T-Top Coupe. VIN 1Z87L8S4123XX, Dark Blue with Midnight Blue leather interior. 20,234 Original Miles. L48 Original Motor, Automatic Transmission, Power Brakes, Power Steering, Power Windows, Factory A/C, Original Factory Aluminum Wheels, Tele Steering Wheel, AM/FM Stereo, Rear Defrost, Sport Mirrors. Condition is Excellent. Full Documentation including Service Records, Original Warranty Card, owners Manual. The 1978 Corvette production year was interesting with more than 50% of the production representing two special models, the Silver Anniversary and the Pace Car. The remainder of the production line was termed the “standard model,” this is the model submitted. Based on the VIN #1Z87L8S4123XX, it was built early in the 1978 production year. It is powered by the standard 350, L-48 motor that is coupled with an automatic transmission. The motor is original and makes this a matching numbers Corvette. This Corvette is unique with only 20,238 original miles. In addition, it is equipped with most of the options that were available during the 1978 model year. Included are power windows and door locks, cruise control, rear window defogger, air conditioning, sport mirror, tilt-telescopic steering column, AM/FM radio and aluminum wheels. This Corvette is Dark Blue in color and the original paint is termed in good condition. The interior has Dark Blue Leather seats which along with the door panels and carpeting are in excellent condition. Mr. Steven’s Corvette has excellent “curb appeal” with its dark blue paint and contrasting optional aluminum wheels. Documentation plays an important role in determining the originality and value of a Corvette. In possession is previous owner history, service records and the original warranty card and owner’s manual. We place a value of $15,000 on this low-mile 1978 Corvette. In addition, the one year average price appreciation factor is +8%. This value is substantiated by recent sales at major Corvette auctions in the US, including Bloomington Gold and Corvettes at Carlisle 2005 events. Submissions:
Send your submissions to with “Corvette Values” in the subject line. We can’t answer them all, but if we find your Corvette interesting to both us and our visitors, we may use it. Feel free to submit a photo as well.

Auburn Auction Results

by Keith Cornett on September 19, 2005

Kruse International has posted the results of the auction that took place in Auburn, Indiana August 31-September 6. What’s interesting about this auction was not so much what sold, but what didn’t sell. Of the 85 Corvettes listed, only 37 were listed as SOLD. While many of the low-end bids were rejected, several cars received significant bids but remained unsold:

1961 Convertible$80,000
1967 Convertible$97,000
1967 Convertible$90,000
1987 Callaway$31,000
Some may say the reason for the many no-sales is that Corvettes tend to do better at predominately Corvette only auctions. I happen to agree. I also believe that Corvette sellers have become well aware of the upswing in pricing and have priced their Corvettes accordingly. These owners would rather take the no-sale at an auction and try to sell their Corvettes elsewhere than lose the premium value they are seeking. There were some good buys at the Auburn Auction:
1957 Convertible$34,700
1964 Convertible$20,200
1979 Coupe$4,600
1984 Coupe$4,300
1990 Convertible$9,600
Click the More link to view the full auction results.

Auburn Auction Results
August 31-September 6

1957 Convertible$34,700
1959 Convertible$39,750
1961 Convertible$39,000
1961 Convertible$39,500
1963 Coupe$51,500
1963 Coupe$59,000
1963 Grand Sport Replica$59,000
1964 Convertible$20,200
1964 Convertible$47,000
1964 Coupe$29,250
1964 Convertible$27,000
1965 Coupe$37,800
1965 Coupe$46,000
1966 Convertible$40,000
1966 Convertible$32,600
1967 Convertible$99,000
1967 Coupe$38,000
1969 Convertible$31,250
1969 Coupe$26,700
1973 Convertible$22,750
1974 Coupe$19,100
1976 Coupe$17,000
1978 Coupe$10,500
1978 Pace Car$17,700
1979 Coupe$4,600
1980 Coupe$9,250
1981 Coupe$7,250
1982 CE Coupe$22,250
1984 Coupe$4,300
1984 Convertible$6,000
1985 Coupe$4,150
1986 Convertible$12,200
1990 Convertible$9,600
1990 Coupe$8,250
1991 ZR-1 Coupe$18,500
1994 Coupe$11,000

Bids that failed to result in a sale

1961 Convertible$80,000Final Bid
1964 Grand Sport Replica$29,500Final Bid
1965 Convertible$38,500Final Bid
1965 Covette Race Car$22,000Final Bid
1965 Corvette Race Car$20,000Final Bid
1966 Corvette$49,500Final Bid
1966 Convertible$41,000Final Bid
1966 Convertible$40,000Final BId
1967 Convertible$97,000Final Bid
1967 Convertible$90,000Final Bid
1968 Convertible$42,000Final BId
1968 Convertible$44,000Final Bid
1968 Convertible$24,000Final Bid
1968 Convertible$25,000Final Bid
1968 Convertible$23,500Final Bid
1968 Coupe$10,700Final Bid
1969 Convertible$21,600Final Bid
1969 Coupe$25,250Final Bid
1972 Coupe$11,700Final Bid
1972 Coupe$14,300Final Bid
1972 Coupe$10,000Final Bid
1972 Coupe$40,000Final Bid
1973 Convertible$10,000Final Bid
1974 Coupe$4,950Final Bid
1978 Coupe$6,300Final Bid
1975 Convertible$21,000Final Bid
1976 Coupe$12,250Final Bid
1979 Coupe$8,700Final Bid
1980 Coupe$13,000Final Bid
1981 Coupe$5,000Final Bid
1981 Coupe$9,300Final Bid
1982 Coupe$6,500Final Bid
1984 Coupe$19,000Final Bid
1985 Coupe$12,000Final Bid
1986 Convertible$13,000Final Bid
1987 Callaway Conv$31,000Final Bid
1987 Callaway Conv$15,000Final Bid
1989 Coupe$5,000Final Bid
1990 Coupe$25,000Final Bid
1990 Convertible$14,500Final Bid
1992 Coupe$7,200Final Bid
1993 Coupe$15,000Final Bid
1996 Coupe$13,100Final Bid
1999 Convertible$21,500Final Bid
2001 Convertible$25,000Final Bid
2002 Coupe$24,000Final Bid
2003 Convertible$30,000Final Bid

Saving the Sting Ray

by Keith Cornett on September 16, 2005

We’re talking about the Original Sting Ray, Bill Mitchell’s personal car that he drove for years around the Detroit area. This original Sting Ray started out as racer and ended up as a GM concept car at the 1961 Chicago Auto Salon. Nearly every important engine – from the 283 to the 427 has powered her, but years of inactivity have taken a toll. Corvette Magazine goes inside the restoration of one of GM’s most important post-WWII designs and talks with the people who have returned the original Sting Ray to her former glory.

Corvette Values: 1972 Convertible

by Keith Cornett on September 14, 2005

SB of New Jersey Submitted this 1972 Convertible to Corvette Values: 1972 Corvette Convertible, VIN 1Z67K2S5214XX. 2 Owner Car. 350 ci, 4 Speed transmission, Yellow with Cloth Black interior, Black Soft top. Power Steering, Factory A/C. $10,000 on Engine/Mechanicals spent within last year. Exterior is original paint in street driven condition. Interior and Chrome are in good condition. This 1972 Convertible is one of 6,508 convertibles manufactured. Based on the VIN it was assembled in the second half of the production run. (21,400 of 27,004 total) The VIN indicates the engine is the base 350 cubic inch engine: Fifth Digit = K: 350 ci 200 hp. A 4-speed transmission was also included in the base model. The Corvette is Sunflower Yellow with Black cloth interior and a black soft top. Only 5% of Corvettes were painted Sunflower Yellow making this a rare color choice for 1972. The exterior paint is original and in street driven condition, with some chipping and cracking. The interior is listed a good condition. The Corvette features wanted conveniences like factory A/C and power steering. The owner has had the Corvette since the late 70′s and is the second owner. Most documentation including history and service/repair receipts have been saved. We place a value of $18,500 on this 1972 Convertible. In addition, our pricing data shows a 14% appreciation in average price during the past year. Submissions:
Send your submissions to with “Corvette Values” in the subject line. We can’t answer them all, but if we find your Corvette interesting to both us and our visitors, we may use it. Feel free to submit a photo as well.

Awesome Street Sign

by Keith Cornett on September 12, 2005

Today I had to go visit a client over in Clearwater to pick up some graphic files for a website I’m working on. The client works out of a house on Corvette Drive! The street sign was so cool, I had to take a photo. I drove down the block looking at the house numbers but I was in the 700-900 blocks. When I got to the end, the street merged into another. How cool would it be to have a house at 427 Corvette Drive? Or take your pick: 283, 327, 350, 454 or 505? The client I visited has a ’63 split window coupe. When I asked him if he bought the house because of the street name, he just smiled…

Katrina’s Corvette Flood

by Keith Cornett on September 10, 2005

You just the knew this topic was coming. Thousands of vehicles sitting submerged in the streets, driveways and garages of New Orleans. What will happen with all those cars including Corvettes that were damaged by the flood waters of Katrina? Automuse has an excellent legal analysis on the laws of Louisiana and how automobiles are branded as “flood” cars. For a vehicle to receive the “flood” brand, it must be declared a total loss by the insurance company and issued a salvage title. The “flood” brand on the salvage title indicates the car was totaled as a result of water damage. However, for a car to be considered a total loss, it must have sustained damages equaling 75% or more of the market value as determined by the NADA handbook. But what about all those cars, including Corvettes that sustained “some” water damage, but did not reach the 75% threshold? While the good news is that Louisiana law requires disclosure to the buyer of a vehicle if it sustained water damage, the downside is that cars that sustained some water damage but not enough to be a total loss, will have clean, unbranded titles. Unfortunately Mississippi doesn’t require buyers to be notified of a car’s water damage, but does require cars that are total losses to be re-titled as a salvage vehicle. So what will happen with all those Corvettes that were damaged? C1′s to C3′s may be had at some decent “restorable” values from insurance companies or brokers who resell salvage vehicles. C4′s and above? Forget about it. With all the electronics that post ’82 Corvettes contain, they are more likely to have costly damage to those key components and aren’t worth the cost of repairs. One of the lasting effects of Katrina may be the public’s avoidance of purchasing pre-owned Corvettes from the Gulf region as well as the sales boon that I am sure Carfax and other title reporting sites will have. Caveat emptor…