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    1956 Chevrolet Corvette Convertible

    Consignment #: 9123 Sign In to View Price


    Vehicle to be offered for Auction sale WITHOUT RESERVE and SOLD to the highest bidder August 14th – 16th, 2014 at Russo and Steele’s 14th Annual Monterey, California Auction. Please contact us for more information.

    In December 1953, engineer and racer Zora Arkus-Duntov wrote a memo to GM management that would have a massive and lasting impact on the future direction of Chevrolet’s Corvette. Following Arkus-Duntov’s forceful argument in favour of ensuring the Corvette’s future success by catering to the growing performance-oriented youth market, the sporty Chevrolet received an infusion of “small-block” V-8 power for 1955, changing the basic character of the car from stylish boulevardier to promising performer.

    Continuing the momentum, a handsome exterior restyling was led by GM’s Bob Cadaret for 1956, featuring the soon-to-be famous side “coves.” Many detail improvements were applied to the Corvette was well, including the addition of external door handles, roll-up side windows. A new hardtop was factory-available, as were optional power windows and a power convertible top, while the basic Corvette interior remained essentially unchanged.

    Building upon the Corvette’s new direction, Arkus-Duntov also proposed that high-performance parts be developed and tested for the Corvette and then made publicly available on the very option sheet presented to Corvette buyers at dealer showrooms. The results began to appear for 1956 in the form of option 469, which added a second four-barrel carburetor for the V-8 engine, resulting in a 15-horsepower increase to 225 total horsepower. Also available was a special high-lift solid-tappet camshaft, which gained instant fame as the “Duntov Cam.” Labeled option 449, it was only available with the 225-horsepower, “dual-quad” engine.

    Underneath, suspension tweaks spurred by Arkus-Duntov improved Corvette handling, so much so that Chevrolet gained the confidence to enter four Corvettes in the Florida International 12-Hour Grand Prix of Endurance, held on the old bomber airfield at Sebring in Florida. One car, entered into the C/Modified class, finished first in its class and ninth overall – an outstanding achievement for the young car and team.

    Just 3,467 Corvettes were built in all for 1956; however, this number represented a strong five-fold increase over the previous model year, ensuring the Corvette’s continued existence. Carrying a base price of $3,958.10, the 1956 Corvette was relatively expensive; however, it was the only true American-built choice for performance-minded drivers during the era. Handsomely finished in Venetian Red with Shoreline Beige coves, this example is one of only 547 examples that were factory-equipped with RPO 426 power-operated windows for their inaugural 1956 model year.

    Other factory options include FOA 101 Outside Air Type Heater, FOA 102 Signal-Seeking Radio, FOA 109 Windshield Washer, RPO 290 6.70-15 Whitewall Tires, RPO 440 Two-Tone Body Paint, RPO 469 225 HP engine with dual four-barrel carburetors, 3-speed manual transmission, RPO 470 Beige soft top, and RPO 419 Auxiliary hard top. Retaining matching numbers, it continues to benefit from an outstanding restoration that began during October 1992 and was completed in October 1995. The restoration is fully documented with pictures and all receipts. Properly displayed in a climate-controlled environment, the Corvette has won numerous awards at local car shows as well.



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