If you’re in the market for something fun that’s guaranteed to hold its appeal for a very long time, it’s hard to go wrong with a vintage Corvette. America’s favorite sports car is finally commanding the respect it deserves. And with awesome classics like this clean ’62 roadster offering red carpet street appeal for weekend warrior money, it’s not hard to see why. A perfect blend of classic virtues and everyday drivability, this handsome C1 is a first rate exercise in old school charm and vintage swagger. If you’re looking for that rare trifecta of ‘low maintenance’, ‘fun to own’ and ‘great investment potential’, this ‘62 Chevy is your best bet!
Well-known cover queen for Cragar’s 2011 product catalog, and featured on BF Goodrich’s 40th anniversary posters, this contoured roadster’s solid, fiberglass body has been massaged to better-than-new condition, layered in dynamic Roman Red paint and sealed in a glossy clearcoat shell. Like most C1s, the car was originally assembled at GM’s new-for-1954 St. Louis manufacturing facility; and like most restored C1s, its fit and finish presents much better now than it did 52 years ago. In fact, judging by the looks of this Chevy’s smooth fuselage, there’s no evidence it has ever seen any kind of catastrophic damage. And today, the car rolls as one very cool classic that, thanks to its hot drivetrain, can be proudly shown and reliably driven day in and day out.
1958 to 1962 was a banner era for the Corvette, as Chevrolet wanted to prove its new flagship could run with the best cars in the world while retaining classic style that would eventually bear an American icon. At the front of this sensational drop-top, a satin black grille rides between round, red-trimmed headlights, extravagant header ornamentation and small, chrome-trimmed parking lamps. In front of that grille, an intricate bumper bends around dramatic fenders which frame sporty cross-flag emblems in sharp stainless trim. Between those fenders, a sculpted hood leads the eye to a classy wraparound windshield that’s cleared by bright stainless wipers and capped by either a fresh black top or body-matched roof. At the back of that hood, lightweight doors hang small mirrors and traditional chrome handles above ribbed rocker trim. And at the back of those doors, a sculpted ‘ducktail’ decklid hangs a translucent Corvette roundel above a chrome tag bracket, familiar Corvette tail lights and a second chrome bumper that bends around equally dramatic quarters.
Hoist this Vette’s sculpted hood and you’ll find a mean, 327 cubic inch Chevrolet V8 that produces roughly 340 horsepower! At the top of that stout small block, a low-profile air cleaner forces wind into a coated Edelbrock carburetor that’s juiced by a coated mechanical pump, a polished Edelbrock filter and a tightly braided hose. At the base of that carburetor, a high performance intake hangs a chrome-capped distributor between polished and finned valve covers. At the base of those valve covers, Belden Performance Plug Wires snake around old school ‘ram’s horn’ exhaust manifolds. And in front of those manifolds, a traditional V-belt spins a chrome alternator between a chrome filler cap, an old school Harrison overflow tank and a clean, body-matched fan shroud. Aesthetically, the Roman Red mill and its assortment of finished and polished accessories provide a natural complement to the car’s Roman Red body. And details like a modern flex fan, a big aluminum radiator and a reproduction Delco battery ensure this C1 runs every bit as good as it looks.
Park this tail hauler on a lift and you’ll find a fully sorted undercarriage that, while clean, is certainly no stranger to the road. The car’s solid floor is covered in a seamless coat of Roman Red paint, which serves as the perfect backdrop for its satin black X-frame. At the center of that floor, a stainless, true-dual exhaust system utilizes a correct crossover and vintage, glasspack-style mufflers to weave an aggressive full throttle roar into a low RPM growl. Just aft of the aforementioned small block, a rugged Muncie 4-speed and GM drop-out rear end sail a posi-traction differential around big, 3.70 gears. Under that rock-solid drivetrain, a completely rebuilt suspension is equipped with tight manual steering and manual drum brakes. At the corners of that suspension, painted Cragars twist 215/65R15 BF Goodrich Radial T/As in front of 235/60R15 BF Goodrich Radial T/As. And everything, from this Vette’s fresh fluid lines to its steel scatter shield is ready to hit the road.
Inside this red hot drop-top, a clean vinyl interior is built around sturdy factory buckets that have just enough break-in time to provide an exceptionally comfortable ride. In front of those seats, a textured dash hangs a full array of rebuilt gauges between a small rearview mirror, a vintage Wonder Bar radio and a stylish clock. At the base of that dash, high quality carpet, which is protected by color-keyed floor mats, serves as the perfect plane for a billet-framed Davis floor shifter. At the edge of that carpet, pristine side panels hang fresh chrome hardware, bright power window switches and low-mounted armrests on small, simple doors. In front of the driver, a large-diameter steering wheel spins speed-drilled spokes around a chrome, Corvette-branded horn button. And behind the passengers, a fully finished trunk features enough storage space for quick weekend getaways.
If you’re looking for a unique classic that mixes a great restoration with unmatched style and instant fun, this Chevy deserves your full attention. It’s spectacular from every angle. It plays to a level of nostalgia that everyone can appreciate. And, whether you’re setting up at a show or just spending Saturday afternoon on the town, it’s guaranteed to be the center of attention!