The fellow who’s credited with the innovative design of the 1969 Corvette exterior door handle certainly put his creation to good personal use over the past half-century.
The designer, who worked nearly 40 years at General Motors, retired as head of design staff at the GM Tech Center in 1983, but not before he had bought a 1969 Corvette brand new on Oct. 15, 1969. He’s owned it ever since.
This one-owner Stingray is now being auctioned on ebay.com, with bidding set to expire on Tuesday, June 30. So far, nine bids have increased the offering to $12,100, still below the reserve amount.
“Even at 95 years old, he was an excellent steward to have had the ownership of this Corvette for 50 years,” the listing reads, “and now his family hopes to find someone to provide the care that he did.”
The car is described as a “simply unaltered/unrestored original,” and it will go to the new owner in the same condition as when the sellers, ClassicAuto Showplace, found it.
“Please note that this Corvette has not been detailed, prepped, or cleaned up,” the listing says. “This is exactly as it came out of the original owner’s garage to us.”
The car has just 43,768 miles on the odometer, an average of only 875 miles per year. The seller notes that it was started and driven short distances on a regular basis every year.
This survivor is said to have been well cared for by its original owner, used sparingly over the years, and kept in his home garage on a carpeted floor.
Naturally since it hasn’t been restored, the Riverside Gold paint is not perfect, with various flaws and untouched chips visible in photos, but no major body flaws or damaged areas are present.
The interior, meanwhile, is described as “excellent and original,” with everything still working, including “the very cool fiber optic interior lights for the blinker and outside light functions.”
You can listen to the car cranked up and running on a YouTube video that accompanies the listing. In the untouched engine compartment is the numbers matching 350/300 horsepower engine connected to the M-40 Turbo Hydra-Matic automatic transmission. The smog pump has been removed at some point but will be included with the sale. This Stingray is also equipped with power steering/brakes, AM/FM radio, and soft ray tinted glass.
Under the body, the frame looks to be solid, though a rust prevention undercoating applied when new has begun to deteriorate with time, causing age-appropriate scaling.
Since the car is a one-owner, obviously many original documents are still present, including the Protect-O-Plate, owner’s manual, AM/FM radio instruction booklet, original sun visor wrap guide for the new GM ignition lock system, and engine starting procedures.
What do you think about this piece of Corvette history with a direct link to the man who actually designed the exterior door handle? Would you leave it as is with its flaws or totally restore the car?
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