1970 Corvette Stingray

The Chevrolet Corvette Sting Ray was first introduced as the second generation Corvettes came out and they have been produced ever since. This article features the 1970 Corvette Stingray which was a third generation Chevrolet Corvette.

Third generation Chevy Corvette

Third generation Chevy Corvette

 

The first generation, referred to as the C1's, ran from 1953 to 1962. The second generation Corvette's were produced from 1963 to 1967 and are known as the C2's. The third generation Chevy Corvette were called the C3's and were produced from 1968 to 1982.  Chevrolet used the word Sting Ray (two words) for the second generation Corvette models and the word Stingray (one word) for the third generation cars.

Many might say that the Corvette was the most popular high performance sports car ever built. While this may surely be true, there are those who consider true sports cars as being something from Europe regardless of the fact that the Corvette's performance is considered superior. Corvette owners may also be a part of the largest active sports car owners group in the world. Pick a city and you'll have an easy time locating Chevy Corvette clubs.

1970 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray

1970 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray

The car featured in this article is the 1970 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray, a third generation Corvette. Although the engine and chassis was from the second generation models, the interior and body was new. Also new for the third generation Corvettes was the T-Top Coupe.

A good number of design changes were made since the car's inception in 1953. The first Corvette's were rushed into production in late 1953 primarily due to the great reception the concept car received earlier that year at the New York Auto Show. As a result of the rushed production there were a lot of things that could be added and tweaked in later models.

The 1970 Corvette Stingray

If you're talking about Corvette's the two subjects to explore are style and performance. The fiberglass body came with big flared fenders and stylish vent grilles, two things that many classic Corvettes are known for. The first flared fenders came out with the 1970 models. The Corvette's interior had newly designed seats along with wood grain paneling. The year 1970 also saw the Corvette offered in more colors.

New Stingray emblem above side grille

New Stingray emblem above side grille

As far as performance is concerned, the 1970 Chevrolet Corvette was advertised to go from Zero to 60 MPH in 5.7 seconds. Horsepower available with the 1970 models could reach 460 horsepower.

1970 Chevy Corvette Specifications

There were three engines to choose from with the 1970 Corvette Sting Ray.

Most of the 1970 Corvettes were built with big block engines although the Chevy small block LT 350 cubic inch was offered and could produce 370 horsepower. Another small block 350 cubic inch engine offered delivered 350 horsepower.

The big block Chevy engine was a 454 cubic inch V-8 that delivered a spectacular 460 horsepower. All three engines had cylinders at ninety degree angles with each cylinder having two valves.

1970 Corvette Stingray flared fenders

1970 Corvette Stingray flared fenders

The transmissions offered with the 1970 Corvette was either an automatic or a three or four speed manual. If you were performance minded chances are that you preferred the manual with it's high performance clutch.

The exhaust tips were shaped rectangular with the 1970 models and the word Stingray appeared on the side of the car.

Racing equipment could also be ordered that included brakes, stabilizing bars and special suspension.

The 1970 Chevy Corvette Stingray's wheelbase was 98.0 inches, overall length of 182.5 inches, width of 69.2 inches and height of 47.8 inches.

The Corvette Stingray's weight was about 3,400 lbs which when matched with the horsepower delivered by the big or small block Chevy engine gave you quite a ride.

The third generation Chevrolet Corvettes were a bit heavier than the second generation having various gadgets added such as fiber optic light monitors and pop up windshield wipers just to name a few.

Production figures for the 1970 Corvette were 10,668 coupes built and 6,648 convertibles.

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The 1962 Chevy Corvette

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1970 Corvette Stingray rear with Corvette circle emblem

1970 Corvette Stingray rear with Corvette circle emblem

The 1962 Chevrolet Corvette Collector's Car

Just about any Chevrolet Corvette built is a collector's car. Some obviously more than others. Generally the Sting Ray's (second generation) are more valuable than the Stingrays (third generation). The Corvette (C3) auction price or selling price of course also is influenced by the car's condition, mileage and degree of restoration performed.

As of this writing,  several 1970 Stingray's have been offered in the high $40,000 range. Auction results for the 1970 Chevy Corvette Stingray indicate a high price of about $180,000 (2008) for a finely restored model and low prices below $10,000 for an non restored car. The average auction sales price over the past five years has been in the $45,000 to $90,000 range for a finely restored 1970 Corvette. Current economic conditions will of course also influence sales and auction prices.

1962 Chevy Corvette

 

The Chevrolet Corvette, like the 1962 Chevy Corvette featured in this article, was General Motors competitor against the Ford Thunderbird as well as the European sports cars. The one thing everyone can say about the 1962 Corvette was that it looked great and had terrific V-8 power. Some might say that the 1962 Corvette had the best engine of it's era.

1962 Chevy Corvette

1962 Chevy Corvette

While the Chevrolet Corvette was designed with rigorous attention to the bottom line and production feasibility, When the first Corvette was introduced, it’s only real purpose was to be part of GM’s Motorama exhibit at the New York Auto Show in 1953. The Corvette debuted as a concept car.

It was the excitement generated by this fiberglass sports car that convinced GM to offer it to the public. The car was essentially rushed into production in late 1953. It's been said that the first few hundred 1953 Corvettes were hand built at a truck assembly plant in Flint Michigan.

Initial sales didn't live up to expectations but GM decided to keep the nameplate going and future design changes obviously made the Chevy Corvette into a household name.

The Chevy Corvette and the Ford Thunderbird

It's been said that General Motors wasn't really convinced that the Corvette would be a permanent part of their car line. When Ford came out with the Thunderbird in 1955 to great acceptance, GM knew that the Corvette was here to stay for a while and it competed head to head with the Thunderbird.

1962 Chevrolet Corvette dashboard

1962 Chevrolet Corvette dashboard

In reality the Thunderbird was a somewhat different car than the Corvette. The Thunderbird had a blend of sports car and conventional passenger car attributes while the Chevy Corvette looked a bit more like a true sports car. The Thunderbird in a large way came across as a luxury sports car.

The Corvette models that were built from 1953 to 1962 were actually built on a 1952 sedan chassis. These were called the C1 Chevy Corvettes.

The first Corvettes had a 150 horsepower, 235-cubic-inch six cylinder engine and a two speed automatic Powerglide transmission (Option). The six cylinder models were discontinued after 1954. Beginning in 1955 all Chevy Corvettes came with eight cylinder engines.

1962 Corvette front end

1962 Corvette front end

1962 Chevrolet Corvette Specifications

The 1962 Corvette engine was a small block 327ci 250hp V-8.  Offered as an option was a  327ci 300 hp, a 340hp and a 327 ci 360hp Fuel Injected V-8 engine.

The 62 Chevy Corvette had a 102.0 inch wheelbase. The car's length was 177.2 inches and width 70.4 inches. The height with the hardtop was 52.2 inches.

The Corvette's curb weight was 3.065 lbs.

The automatic Powerglide transmission was offered as an option. The manual transmission was a four speed.

Chevrolet Corvette rear emblem

Chevrolet Corvette rear emblem

The 1962 Chevy Corvette was offered in seven different colors. These included Tuxedo Black, Ermine White, Honduras Maroon, Roman Red, Fawn Beige, Almond Beige and Sateen Silver.

The 1962 Corvette was similar in appearance to the 1961 model with the exception of  trim changes. Most notable these included that the cove area on the side of the car was no longer trimmed in chrome. It also could not be painted a different color as the previous models could. The chrome strakes in the cove were replaced with a new grill. The car's insignia located in the cove was the cross flags emblem. The front grille of the car was now painted black as opposed to the earlier chrome and the front cross flags emblem was enclosed by a circle. The emblem on the trunk was the same as in previous years.

The dashboard on the 1962 Chevrolet Corvette was unchanged from the 1961 dash.

The 1962 Chevrolet Corvette new car base price was about $4,000.

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1962 Corvette Collector's Car

New cove work on side of 1962 Chevy Corvette

New cove work on side of 1962 Chevy Corvette

Classic Chevrolet Corvettes were and are great collector cars. The first generation Corvettes, the C1 models, are very popular.

The 1962 Corvette, fully restored and in excellent condition will sell as of this writing for perhaps $60,000 plus. A 1962 Corvette fuel injected model could bring in $100,000. Earlier Corvette models in fine condition will sell for more perhaps in the range of $60,000 to $100,000 plus depending on year, exact model and overall restoration.

(Article and photos copyright 2013 AutoMuseumOnline)

The First Corvette / American Sports Car

 The Chevrolet Corvette and Route 66

1962 chevrolet corvette

The 1962 Chevrolet Corvette

The combination of strong automobile sales in the 1920's along with the Federal Aid Highway Act of 1921, which called for the networking of roads, made the popular Route 66 a dream highway. Route 66 was in it's heyday in the era prior to the development of the Interstate Highway system in the 1950's and 1960's. The highway came along much before the first Corvette American sports car yet the historic road today often brings back memories of the first generation Corvettes.

The Interstate highway legislation of 1956 created the Interstate System. During it's glory years, the historic Route 66 allowed people to head west out of the dust bowl states of the 1930's. During the 1950's it ushered in the era of driving out west on vacation. In large part due to the popular television series Route 66, the Chevrolet Corvette became a representative of the freedom to hit the open road. The Corvette derived it's name from the small, maneuverable fighting frigate by the same name.

An American Sports Car

1962 chevy corvette

Corvette interior and dash

While the Chevrolet Corvette was designed with rigorous attention to the bottom line and production feasibility, When the first Corvette was introduced, it's only real purpose was to be part of GM's Motorama exhibit at the New York Auto Show in 1953. The public was excited about this new fiberglass sports car when unveiled in New York. With eager buyers waiting on the sidelines, General Motors offered the new Corvette American sports car for sale a mere six months after the Motorama.

Chevrolet Engines

The first Corvette models built between 1953 and 1962 were solid axle cars. Their chassis were essentially those of a 1952 sedan. The cars were built in Flint Michigan and St. Louis Missouri. Today, Chevrolet Corvettes are built in Bowling Green Kentucky. The front end of the first generation models was suspended by an independent system and the rear held up with leaf springs. The Corvette had a 150 horsepower, 235-cubic-inch six cylinder engine and a two speed automatic Powerglide transmission. The 1954 Corvettes were the last produced with six cylinder engines. After that model year they were all eights.

The First Corvettes

vintage chevy corvette

Grille of 62 Corvette

The first Corvette, the 1953 models, sold for about $3,500 which was a fairly high car price in that year. Only 300 Polo White 1953 Corvettes were produced before it was time to introduce the 1954 models. This extremely low first year production total helped make the 1953 Corvette quite a rare collectors car. The first model year Corvettes were all hand made and assembled. The 1954 models were essentially the same as the first 53's but more color selections were available. In 1954, the buyer could choose between Pennant Blue, Sportsman Red and Black in addition to the 1953 Polo White. The 1955 Chevrolet Corvette introduced a significant change and that was a V-8 engine.

The 1962 Chevrolet Corvettes

During the 1962 model year of which the Corvette shown in this article is from, the car offered major improvements. First, the small-block V8 increased to 327 cubic inches. Horsepower increased significantly. The four barrel engine which was the base power plant produced 250 horsepower with options for higher output engines in 300 and 340 horsepower versions. These power options fueled a lot of additional sales. Many sports car enthusiasts believe that the 1962 Corvette could be the best Corvette ever built. Without a doubt, the 1962 model was considered the best out of the first generation Corvettes. General Motors first generation American sports cars were a big success.

You'll also enjoy our photos and history of the very rare Gullwing Mercedes and the 1955-57 Ford Thunderbirds.

1962 corvette

1962 Corvette

It's interesting to note that General Motors originally didn't believe the first Corvette would become a mainstay brand. This way of thinking changed when the Ford Motor Company introduced the Thunderbird in 1955. Beginning in 1955, the Corvettes and Thunderbirds were direct competitive name plates. There was a difference however because the Corvette appeared to be a true sports car where the Thunderbird was billed more as a luxury sports car. Also, starting in 1958, the Thunderbird changed to a four seater.

The 1963 model year for Corvette would usher in big changes to the car. In 1963, the Corvette Sting Ray, and sometimes spelled Stingray, was introduced. Split rear windows were designed into the Corvettes but were discontinued not long afterwards due to safety concerns. The Stingray was a fastback car with very clean lines. The 1963 models also had non-functioning hood vents. Both the split rear window and non-functioning hood vents were gone when the 1964 Corvette models came out.

(Photos from author's private collection)