It’s been nearly a quarter of a century since this 1963 Split Window Corvette was restored, but this example of the one-year-only Sting Ray remains in very nice condition.
The owner, who lives in the Newburgh, New York area, has decided now is the time to sell his car after 26 years of ownership. By the way, all three previous owners are from the same area, he says.
He’s asking $99,000 for the Sting Ray, which apparently is a garage queen as he says he’s just taken it to local shows.
While cars from the northern region of the United States sometimes suffer from rust, this one is still said to have a “great frame,” perhaps an indication of the level of car it’s received during its lifetime since leaving the St. Louis factory going on 60 years ago.
Only 10,594 coupes were produced during 1963, and this one is finished in a rare color, Saddle Tan. No one seems to know just how many were produced like this, with the Corvette Black Book listing figures for just three of the seven colors available – 4,612 in Riverside Red, 3,516 in Sebring Silver, and 3,475 in Daytona Blue. Numbers for Tuxedo Black, Silver Blue, and Ermine White are also unknown.
This car is said to retain its matching numbers 327/250 horsepower engine that was completely rebuilt in “96 or 97 with all stock original internals,” hooked to an M20 4-speed manual transmission with 350 positraction rear end rebuilt with all new clutches. However, the cast valve covers, aluminum intake manifold, and open-element air cleaner are apparently not correct for that year.
The body-on restoration in 1997 included new paint, hood, and grills, with all body emblems and bumpers rechromed. The car also has new brakes and tires, new ’63 Corvette wheel covers with spinners, and new stock exhaust front to rear, along with new headlight motors.
The car isn’t completely stock, with a rolled and pleated saddle interior having been installed, apparently during the restoration 25 years ago. Despite the age, though, the seats, dash, instrument panel, carpet, and headliner still look great.
Overall, this seems to be a nice example of a rare split-window coupe, which was replaced with a single pane of glass the next year in a nod to chief engineer Zora Arkus-Duntov’s wishes. While the color is rare, we wonder if that fact will actually hurt the number of potential customers. There’s a reason why unusual colors aren’t very prolific when a car is new – most buyers prefer the more common shades like red, silver, black or white. How about you?
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