Monday, October 10, 2011


Corvette by William 74
Corvette, a photo by William 74 on Flickr.
Hard to believe, but the Chevrolet Corvette wasn't a successful car when it was introduced in 1953. Rushed into production after making the rounds of various auto shows as a concept, the Corvette received mixed reviews. It looked fantastic, and the first examples sold well, but it soon became apparent that GM's new sports car was more of a cruiser than a racer. It was slower than people expected, and it was beset with quality issues such as water leaks and body panel fit due in part to GM's use of fiberglass for the outer body panels.


These issues were fairly quickly resolved, and the '54 model year cars were better built, and offered more colors to boot. But the Corvette was still a modest performer with it's six cylinder sedan engine, not the sort of powerplant that enthusiasts expected. This changed in 1955, when GM introduced it's new V-8 engine, which naturally found it's way into it's sports car as well. Sales perked up, and did so even more in 1956 when the car gained new styling, roll up windows, and other refinements.

This slightly down at heel example is a '55, with a V-8. I photographed it at a show-it is completely original, having been put in a garage in 1966 and not taken out till recently.


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