NEW PRICE! One of only 190 Grand Sport convertibles built, one of only 137 with black leather, one of only 76 with F45 suspension. 15,313 original miles, two owners, clean CarFax. Exceptional investment-grade Corvette.
Admiral Blue with Arctic White stripes and red hashmarks was exclusive to the Grand Sport and was the only way you could get it. By 1996, after 12 years of production, they’d pretty much perfected the C4 so build quality is exceptionally good throughout and the paint has a shine that belies its age. Obviously few buyers used their Grand Sport as daily transportation, and that’s obviously the case here—we’re pretty sure this car has never been wet. All the paint is original, there are no dings or chips, not even on the nose, and even the chin spoiler is remarkably bereft of scrapes and scratches. This one is beautiful in every way, and there are likely lower-mileage cars out there, they probably aren’t any nicer.
You could choose black leather or torch red, and black seems like the safe choice. Custom interior touches include ‘Grand Sport’ embroidery on the seat backs, but for the most part it sticks to the same formula that made the C4 such a comfortable cruiser. The combination of analog and digital gauges was an effective way to convey important information and you’ll note that the LT4 engine has a 6250 RPM redline, up 500 RPM over the LT1. Just about everything was standard, including power seats, windows, locks, and mirrors, a powerful climate control system, an AM/FM/cassette/CD stereo system, and a trip computer. The driver’s seat shows some very minor comfort marks, but certainly no damage and a set of carpeted floor mats with red piping were added to keep the carpets looking their best. A white top was the only choice, and it’s the model of folding top simplicity, stowing under the rear deck in seconds. A heated glass rear window is standard, too.
Mechanically, the Grand Sport carries the most powerful small block V8 up to that time, adding 30 horsepower to the LT1’s 300. Bigger injectors, a revised camshaft, more compression, larger vales, and roller rockers all contribute to the LT4’s rev-happy nature. The redline was raised and there’s noticeably more punch at any speed, particularly in third gear, and the Grand Sport is still formidable in this age of 600 horsepower Corvettes. The LT4 is easy to recognize with its red intake manifold and plug wires, and a ‘Grand Sport’ badge on the throttle body. Obviously this one is completely unmodified and given its status as an A-list collector’s item, it hasn’t been raced or abused. Turn the key and it springs to life instantly, idles relatively smoothly (remember those upgrades), and makes plenty of oil pressure. The exhaust system still has its original catalytic converters and mufflers, so it’s 100% legal in every state, and OEM reliability is unaffected. This car will run practically forever.
The only transmission available with the LT4 was the ZF 6-speed manual, one of the slickest gearboxes you’ll find behind a small block V8. Out back, there are 3.45 gears on a limited slip, and that’s plenty of gear for the torquey 350 to get it rolling with authority. Towering overdrive gears on 5th and 6th mean that it just loafs along at highway speeds and if you’re careful, you can pull down 25 MPG on long trips. Nice, right? This car is also equipped with the optional $1695 F45 adjustable suspension, which narrows the production range down to just 76 Grand Sport convertibles so equipped. Corvette brakes have always been powerful and are still carrying their factory brake pads, and the exhaust has a nice growl that never gets annoying. 17-inch A-Mold wheels from the ZR1 were part of the Grand Sport package, this time painted gloss black and wearing Goodyear GS-C tires, which are indeed original-issue (we recommend replacing them if you’re going to drive the car extensively).
Grand Sport convertibles are obviously a rare commodity and they rarely come up for sale. The ZR1 seems to be struggling to find its way onto collectors’ must-have lists, but a Grand Sport convertible will always be a first-rate collectable, and you don’t have to love Corvettes to want one. Great cars will always be great, and that’s never been more true than with this Corvette’s unique combination of style, rarity, and performance. Call today!
For more details and photos, please visit www.HarwoodMotors.com
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