Here’s the perfect car for Throwback Thursday, especially since today is Thanksgiving.
It’s an especially good day to be thankful for Zora Arkus-Duntov and all that he did to help the Corvette become what it is today.
That’s why it’s appropriate to feature this 1955 Corvette once owned by Zora and likely driven mostly by his wife, Elfi.
Apparently, the Corvette is one of two prototypes built on a 1956 chassis with a 1955 body and was actually titled a “1956 Assembled Corvette.” No one knows if Zora paid for the car or if it was a gift from Chevrolet.
Nevertheless, the Duntovs kept the car until 1962 when they sold it to neighbor Chuck Schank. Interestingly enough, in 1965, Schank ran an ad in Hot Rod magazine trying to sell the historic car. The ad pointed out that the car was a Chevy research experimental prototype and had been completely restored. Schank said in the ad that he had $3,500 invested in the car and would take the best offer. Apparently, he wasn’t pleased with the offers he received and wound up keeping the car another three years.
In 1968, the third owner swapped the engine, repainted the car, and took it drag racing. The next owner, James Dalesandro, apparently realized what he had and restored the car back to its original Harvest Gold with the Yellow/Green two-tone interior, even going so far as to get a letter from Zora verifying the car’s original engine, transmission, and exterior color.
After a series of owners, the car ended up in the collection of Al Wiseman in the late 1990s, and he’s the one who sold it to Michaelis in 2007.
Wouldn’t we all love to go back in time and make a purchase like this in 1965 when we could have bought a real piece of Corvette history for pocket change?
Super Chevy Magazine