Corvettes on Craigslist: Former L82 1979 Corvette Backyard Find


Corvettes on Craigslist: Former L82 1979 Corvette Backyard Find

Who would have thought a 41-year-old Corvette selling for just $2,000 would draw so much interest?

But then again, the ’79 does hold the distinct honor of being the most popular Corvette ever produced, to the tune of some 53,807 examples that left the St. Louis factory.

Now, “popular” doesn’t necessarily translate into “the best,” but it does indicate that folks – like this writer – were especially crazy about Corvettes back then, especially when they listed for just a tad over $10,000 and could be outfitted nicely for another $2,000 to $3,000 in options.

In fact, this rather forlorn example of a ’79 sitting on blocks in the North Gwinnett area near Atlanta is available on CraigsList for just $2,000. Back in the day, this was probably one sharp-looking Corvette and even featured the most powerful engine available – the 225 horsepower L82 V8.

Corvettes on Craigslist: Former L82 1979 Corvette Backyard Find

Unfortunately, just like the tires, that engine is long gone. However, a rebuildable 350 engine is available from the seller for $300, and he points out that the transmission does come with the purchase. Having had to replace a transmission in an ’88 Corvette convertible many years ago, I’m not so sure that’s a good thing, however. A set of original rally wheels is also included, or you can choose four of the upgraded aluminum wheels for another $800.

Not much more information is provided about the car, but from the photos included with the listing, the body appears to be in decent condition, though we’re concerned about the distinct possibility of rust underneath since we don’t know how long it’s been sitting out in its current location.

Though it definitely has a long way to go to make it back to its glory days, the car has managed to draw quite a bit of interest in the comments section on

Corvettes on Craigslist: Former L82 1979 Corvette Backyard Find

Folks like Steve R: “Cheap is relative. Driver quality late-70s Corvettes aren’t expensive. At this point all this Corvette is is an overpriced parts car. It’s likely only a beginner that hasn’t done their research would be enticed by the relatively low entry point.”

Ike adds: “SAT Exam question: If a 1979 Corvette leaves its blocks at 9:35 in the morning at a cost of $2000, how long will it take the new owner to spend $10,000 on a failed restoration project and re-list it on Craigslist?”

But Darrun is more optimistic: “To those that think this is an overpriced parts car … You haven’t bought very many used C3 parts. Although it may not be the ideal project for a NCRS restoration, some young guy with ambition could certainly make a neat driver, and get into a Corvette cheap.”

Corvettes on Craigslist: Former L82 1979 Corvette Backyard Find

Al takes it to an even more nostalgic level, saying: “If I was 14 again, I’d buy it for $1500. And spend my summers sanding down, comb the papers & CL for cheap parts. By the time I’m 16 hopefully have it prepped for paint & have a nice ride for HS. My best friend done the exact same thing. Took his paper route money at 14 in ’74, bought for $400, a ’68 Camaro SS, the which we know now, rare, L-89 eng w/alum heads 396/375 M-22 4sp conv. Blue w/ white top, blue int. He done exactly that, spent summer sanding down & repainted at 16. It orig had that white band around the nose with that side spear stripe along the side & door, now sports the dual factory looking stripes on hood & decklid. Wish I could share a pic, as he still has it looking cherry in his dads garage in Stratford, CT although, a pilot now for AA in San Diego the last almost 30 yrs, flies back twice a year to take off the trickle charger & drive it around a week. Some kid today can get that same joy with this one.”

Personally, we’d love for this Corvette to make it all the way back, but there are too many other examples out there for not much more money that would give someone a better starting point. On the other hand, if you’re going to replace the interior and do a repaint anyhow, why not go with the cheapest car you can find like this one?

What do you think?

Craigslist via

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  1. I sold my turn key “Beater quality” 78 L82 4Spd 5 years ago for 3k,also my 85 & 90 turn key for the same price. It was time for a change. It was getting expensive to maintain 3.Used the cash to buy a 93 40th Aniv, rag top/ 6Spd witch is my 8th Vette & probably my last.
    You could put a 4×4 frame under that 79 like the 76 that was posted here.

  2. I still own a ‘79 silver/white leather L48 auto I bought for $10,125 in the summer of 1987 with 20K miles on it, (3rd owner). It was my daily driver for many years. I have every piece of delivery day paper work except window sticker & build sheet (which may be on top of fuel tank). I also have every repair receipt including oil changes ( every 3K) since ‘87 and don’t want to add them up, LOL! A retired mechanic friend is rebuilding carb & new interior lighting as I type. Matching power train that has never been rebuilt, 100K plus miles now. Not rare but C3 has been a world of fun for myself, kids and family. Still get compliments every time I talk it out and been in a ton of parades over the years, 1 great repaint 15 years ago. BTW, the vette pictured here for sell is one of only 13% of the 53,807 that was optioned with the D80 Indy type front & rear spoilers. I think it is a parts car, as many better candidates are out there. You would have more in this car than it would ever be worth. JMO.

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