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Vehicle to be offered for Auction sale August 13th – 15th, 2015 at Russo and Steele’s 15th Annual Monterey California Auction. Please contact us for more information.
For the triumphant final production years of the first-generation, solid rear-axle Corvette, styling was significantly updated in 1961 with a smart new rear-end treatment predicting that of the upcoming Corvette Sting Ray, plus a simplified blacked-out grille out in front. Further refinements for 1962 included the elimination of 1950s-era two-tone exterior finishes. Less decorative and more purposeful in appearance, the final C1 edition was a hot seller when new and today, fine examples remain perennial collector favorites.
While it took until 1955 for Chevrolet’s revolutionary small-block V-8 to occupy the Corvette engine bay, a myriad of engine and powertrain combinations was available by 1962. The basic 327 cubic-inch V-8 offered a high 10.5:1 compression ratio, a four-barrel carburetor, and a no-maintenance hydraulic valvetrain to deliver a stout 250 bhp and startling all-around performance belying its relatively mild specifications. Comfort and convenience options were abundant, and exterior color choices now numbered seven distinctive hues.
As always, the Corvette figured prominently in competition, with the Briggs Cunningham team earning a class victory at Le Mans in 1960. On America’s road circuits in SCCA competition, “The Flying Dentist” Dr. Dick Thompson took the 1961 B-Production crown for 1961, followed by the A-Production title for 1962, confirming the Corvette’s growing competition prowess. The Corvette was particularly effective at the growing numbers of drag strips nationwide in the Modified Sports and “Gasser” ranks, with “Big John” Mazmanian’s blown, Candy Red-painted C1 remaining particularly unforgettable.
Wearing its original black/yellow California plates, this 1962 Corvette Roadster is a matching numbers example that was purchased from the elderly prior owner three years ago. A repaint in matching Roman Red lacquer was performed during the mid-1980s and remains very presentable. The complete interior remains original, as does the red hard top, wheels, hub caps, seat belts, glass, chrome, and wiper/washer. The engine and transmission are original and original ancillary items include the ignition shields, air cleaner, and the original aluminum radiator and cooling fan. Correct convertible top frame with white top installed in the 90’s but functioning perfectly, as does all chrome fastening hardware.
The Consignor reports the Corvette starts on command and runs and drives as it looks. All gauges, radio, clock, and interior lights are reported to function perfectly, the frame still shows its factory-stencilled VIN, and the factory-installed body shims remain in place. Following acquisition, the clock and Wonderbar signal-seeking radio were rebuilt, the original exhaust was replaced with a new factory-correct system from the manifolds to the tailpipes, the worn original shocks were replaced with correct Delco units. Rebuilt mechanical items include the brakes, the original master cylinder, and the distributor; new items include the breaker points, distributor cap and rotor, spark-plug wires, belts, hoses, heater coil, and fuel tank. All fluids were changed, a vintage-style tar-top battery was installed, and the original carpets were cleaned and shampooed. If you are looking for a late-model ‘C1’ Corvette that is ready to buy and enjoy, this is it!