Value-priced Corvette convertible. Great original color combination, nice original leather interior, two tops, A/C. GM crate V8 with 290 horsepower, new exhaust, new shocks, and more. Affordable and ready to cruise!
There’s no need to fuss about pedigrees in a 1974 Corvette and this one is most certainly a driver, so don’t expect to be winning Bloomington Gold. On the other hand, it’s an original code 56 Bright Yellow car and the vivid paint just screams off the curvy Stingray bodywork. It’s an older repaint that shows its share of bumps and bruises, but none of the detract for the eyeball this car has going down the road. We don’t believe this car has ever been disassembled and certainly never wrecked, so body lines are good and it still carries its original 1974-only 2-piece rear bumper. The doors close easily and line up well, the headlight doors sit flush thanks to new actuators, and the hood sits just proud at the latches, something that’s easy to adjust if it bothers you. It shines up nicely and there’s no denying that this is the kind of car that gets noticed. And now that the C3 is getting some respect, it gets noticed for all the right reasons.
The black leather interior is largely original and in very good condition. Sure, there are signs of wear and a little stretching on the driver’s lower cushion, but no splits or tears and it’s still easy to settle in behind the wheel. Once you’re there, you’ll find a tilt steering column, a full array of fully operational gauges, and a quick-shifting TH400 3-speed automatic transmission that’s virtually indestructible. This car also offers factory A/C, which isn’t working but the system is complete and could probably be made to work without a massive investment. Overhead there’s a black convertible top that’s in good condition with some cloudiness on the rear window, as well as a optional factory hardtop that seals it up in inclement weather. Not bad.
The engine is a 350 cubic inch GM crate engine installed about 10 years ago. They tell me it’s rated at 290 horsepower, which is considerably more than the original L48 and it gives this yellow roadster an entirely new personality. It starts easily, of course, and with a hydraulic cam inside it idles nicely and stays cool in traffic, but there’s a big hit of torque just off idle that launches this ‘Vette far better than any of its stock siblings. There’s also plenty of urge at any speed and it doesn’t run out of breath like the original. It’s not going to eat any big blocks, but for a ‘70s ‘Vette, this one is a blast to drive. It inhales through its original cowl induction air cleaner assembly and the ignition is still covered by original shields, so it looks quite correct under the hood. Like the rest of the car, it’s not detailed for show but pretty engines don’t get used, so don’t sweat it. Lots of new parts mean it’s ready to enjoy, and that’s entirely the point of this car.
Underneath, more of the same: a little grungy but 100% operational and ready to rock. The TH400 shifts crisply and with 3.08 gears out back, this Corvette has good long legs for highway cruising. Newer shocks, fresh bushings on the front sway bar, and a new exhaust system with chambered pipes that sound spectacular, all add up to a car that doesn’t ask for much in return for having fun. No frame rot, either in the kick-ups ahead of the rear wheels or the “birdcage” and it sits right on 15-inch Rally wheels wearing fat white-letter radials.
The bottom line is this: a ready-to-use vintage Corvette convertible for under $20,000. The upgraded engine makes it very entertaining to drive and the hardware is nigh indestructible, so don’t think twice about going out and having fun. Let the pedigree guys fret over numbers and trophies, you’ll be out enjoying the sun, the sound, and all that torque. Call today!
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