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The AutoGuide News Blog is your source for breaking stories from the auto industry. Delivering news immediately, the AutoGuide Blog is constantly updated with the latest information, photos and video from manufacturers, auto shows, the aftermarket and professional racing.
The late Paul Newman will be remembered by automotive enthusiasts worldwide, though perhaps in varying ways by different people.
Whether it was being a friend and rival to Steve McQueen, or racing the 24 Hours of Le Mans in Barbour’s Porsche 935, or being the oldest driver at age 70 to be part of a winning team in a major sanctioned race, Newman paved a rich heritage of motorsports throughout his life.
And now the same 700-hp, 346-cubic inch V8-powered 2002 Chevrolet Corvette that Newman won his last SCCA race at Lime Rock in has fetched $275,000 at the RM Auctions in Amelia Island. The Corvette was just recently rebuilt, re-bodied and repainted, and numbered 83 for Newman’s age prior to the auction. It was originally built by Riley & Scott for Tom Gloy’s 2002 Trans Am season.
Newman’s list of accolades ran long, including 55 mainstream acting awards, winning an Academy Award for best actor in 1986 and being well-known for his “Newman’s Own” food company which donates all post-tax profits and royalties to charity. As of July 2011, those donations had exceeded $300-million.
GALLERY: Paul Newman’s 2002 Chevrolet Corvette Race Car
There isn’t a particularly impressive way to write it, but then again there probably doesn’t have to be: a 25-car collection of classic Chevrolet Corvettes will go on sale in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., next weekend.
The list includes cars running from1953-1969 in consecutive, uninterrupted order without a single model repeat. Owner Tony Parella is selling his collection through Auctions America in an effort to sell the entire fleet.
Among the vehicles up for auction, Parella is selling a 1953 restored to the car’s original Polo White paint with red leather interior and the original leather top (seen above).
Other especially noteworthy cars include a Greenwood Green 1967 edition with 435 hp and a 1954 Corvette (one of only four) restored to its factory black paint.
The Auction will take place March 16 through 18 where more than 500 classics, exotics and hot rods will be available for purchase including Parella’s Corvettes. The combined estimated value of the collection is between $655,000 and $1.5 million.
GALLERY: Tony Parella Corvette Collection
Collector’s editions are always nice to have, especially when quantities are limited. When it’s the last of a generation of iconic Chevrolet Corvette models, and only 190 were made… it’s an even bigger deal.
Up for sale is the 330-hp, LT4-equipped Corvette Grand Sport Convertible, produced back in 1996 to celebrate the outgoing of the Corvette’s C4 model. This collectible Grand Sport features the Admiral Blue and Arctic White Grand Sport trim and the unique red interior, that makes it even rarer.
This particular vehicle is number-709 and has 19,380 miles on the odometer with a price tag of $55,900. It’s also one of 53 that got the red leather interior.
Under the hood is the LT4 small block from GM with 330-hp and 340 lb-ft of torque, which is respectable today – but was the king back in 1996. A six-speed manual transmission is mated to the LT4 and this particular vehicle is one of 118 Grand Sport Convertibles with the F45 adjustable suspension system.
The Corvette sports 17-inch A-mold wheels that are resemble the five-spoke design found on the ZR-1. Wrapping them are staggered 255/45/17 front Goodyear Eagle F1s while the rear has a much wider 285/40/17 setup.
True Corvette collectors shouldn’t need to look much farther than this for their next purchase. This Grand Sport Convertible is not only rare, but has been kept in pristine condition making it an easy buy to justify.
Watch a video on the 1996 Chevrolet Corvette Grand Sport Convertible below.
GALLERY: 1996 Chevrolet Corvette Grand Sport Convertible
[Source: RK Motors]
As if winning Super Bowl XLVI and becoming the MVP of the game wasn’t enough, New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning was also handed the keys to a 2012 Chevrolet Corvette Grand Sport Convertible Centennial Edition.
The MVP Award winner was chosen through a media panel and fan vote on www.superbowl.com during the game, and those that watched the events unfold during the big game probably knew the younger Manning would be MVP once the game was over and the Giants had won. Now he’ll get to enjoy the 6.2L V8 with 436-hp and 424 lb-ft of torque in a limited, black-on-black Centennial edition model to celebrate 100 years of Chevrolet history.
Those who watched the post-game ceremony probably got a good laugh at how Manning didn’t seem to really acknowledge that he had won a car. In fact, the announcer had to reiterate a couple of times just to get Manning’s attention to hand him over the keys. But we’ll give him the benefit of the doubt; considering he just won his second Super Bowl, proved he was an elite quarterback and, well, probably didn’t care too much about the Corvette.
GALLERY: Eli Manning / Chevrolet Corvette Grand Sport Convertible
The first ever 2013 Chevrolet Corvette 427 Convertible went for a hot $600,000 at the 2012 Barrett-Jackson auction. Sporting VIN #001, the convertible sports car was sold to Ron Pratte, a multi-millionaire who made his fortunes from wood framing and concrete foundations.
When the ‘Vette first hit the auction block, it caused a bidding frenzy quickly jumping up to over $200,000 when things started to die down. Then Jeff Gordon decided to make it more enticing by adding in his own racing suit and a VIP trip to the 2012 Daytona 500. The final $600,000 sale price wasn’t even the best part, as Eddie Vannoy added another $100,000 donation to the price of the car, which is going towards the AARP Drive for Hunger charity.
The Corvette 427 features an LS7 engine from the Z06 with 505-hp and 470 lb-ft of torque. It’s the most powerful engine ever placed into a Corvette convertible. It’s also outfitted with several carbon fiber pieces in order to save some pounds, with the convertible weighing in at 3,555-lbs. Its 0-60 mph time is a scant 3.8-seconds while it can clock the quarter mile in just 11.8-seconds.
GALLERY: Corvette 427 Convertible
When the Chevy Corvette celebrated its 50th birthday back in 2003, many enthusiasts were hoping for a special edition model to be released. Chevrolet for the most part failed to deliver, only offering a version with custom paint and an emblem package. The aftermarket decided to take things into their own hands, coming up with a limited edition appearance package that commemorated the 50th anniversary.
Developed by Advanced Automotive Technologies out in Rochester Mills, Michigan, a 1953 Commemorative Edition appearance package features retro C1 styling with a then-new generation C5 Vette – in this case, a 2001 model. Only seven total C5 Z06s got converted, and this is one of them. In total, only 200 of the 1953 Commemorative Edition packages made it onto C5s worldwide.
Packed with 405-hp, this very hard-to-find creation sports only 8,049-miles on the odometer and has an asking price of $69,900. Other than the retro-styled appearance package, most everything is what you’d expect on a C5 Z06, so no huge surprises under the hood or inside the cabin except that it’s all immaculate. Nonetheless, the aesthetics are what makes this car so unique, with it completely torn down to everything but its doors and roofs for the remake.
The fiberglass panels for the 1953CE kit were aligned to factory perfection before the entire body got resprayed Torch Red. To complete the transformation, new lights and red metal accents were added to the car. The result is a retro-style Vette with modern technology under the hood and a modern body to preserve it for many years to come.
Check out a video highlighting the car after the break.
GALLERY: Corvette Z06 1953 Commemorative Edition
[Source: RK Motors]
Men in the U.S. went big, brawny and sporty in 2011 – that is, when it came to the kind of vehicles they bought this past year.
According to J.D. Power’s Power Information Network (PIN) real-time transaction data, men leaned towards sports cars and pickup trucks in the first 11 months of 2011. In fact, out of the top 10 new-model vehicles that men bought or leased, six of them were large pickup trucks or vans. Topping the list of model pickups and vans were the Ford F-Series and Chevrolet Silverado. The data shows that these vehicles were purchased for commercial uses, not necessarily for dropping kids off at soccer practice.
Also in the top 10 models were three cool sports cars – BMW M3 , the Porsche 911 and Chevrolet Corvette. The M3 had highest number of male car buyers in the sports category, with most of these buyers falling into the 16- to 35-year-old demographic. The Porsche 911 was the second top pick, followed closely by the Corvette.
Also making the 2011 list is the GMC Sierra, the Audi A8/S8, the Ford Econoline and the Chevrolet Express. One of the new entries on the list this year is the Chevrolet Volt, although it didn’t crack the top 10.
[Source: J.D. Power and Associates]
In their desire to offer their customers a greater variety of exciting cars that they can rent, Hertz’s Adrenaline Collection will now feature the 6.2L V8 powered Camaro SS and Corvette convertibles. The Camaro SS comes packing 400-hp and a six-speed automatic transmission while the Vette has 430-hp and a six-speed manual. The Adrenaline Collection is available in California, Nevada, Colorado, Utah, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Florida, New York and New Jersey.
The Prestige Collection now adds Cadillac’s CTS to its lineup, featuring a 3.6L V6 with 318-hp, NeverLost GPS, satellite radio and Bluetooth capability. Hertz’s Prestige Collection is available in Hawaii, Washington, Oregon, California, Nevada, Colorado, Arizona, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Texas, Florida, Georgia, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Connecticut and Massachusetts.
Set to compete in the 2012 Grand-Am Racing Series and making its debut at the upcoming Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona Race, Chevrolet’s Corvette Daytona Prototype was caught testing at Daytona and there’s plenty of videos showing what it can do.
The footage includes some fan-shot videos that really show off what the car is all about and loud its V8 rumble. Four different teams will be campaigning the new Corvette Daytona, and Chevrolet hopes that one of them will claim the 24 Hours of Daytona Race, where the last time a Corvette has won was back in 2001 with a C5-R.
Check out the videos after the break.
GALLERY: Corvette Daytona Prototype
[Source: Inside Line]
Autocross is generally the safest form of motorsport you can participate in. Most courses are setup to focus on skillful driving rather than high speed passes, leveraging your vehicle’s handling and brakes more than its horsepower. Unfortunately for this Chevrolet Corvette, a cold track with cold tires meant a long, unintentional sideways slide into the curb.
And of course all the action is caught on video and immediately uploaded onto YouTube for the world to see. We’re going to guess this accident is partly driver error and partly (albeit, much smaller) bad course design. Even though the ‘Vette doesn’t seem like it’s going at any real fast rate when the accident occurs, there’s definitely some significant damage to the car, especially to the chassis.
Check out the video after the break.
The Chevrolet Corvette Daytona Prototype will compete in the Grand-Am Racing series in 2012 and make its debut at the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona race. Four teams will run the cars, including the No. 90 Spirit of Daytona Racing, the No. 10 SunTrust Racing, the No. 99 GAINSCO/Bob Stallings Racing, and the No. 5 and No. 9 Action Express Racing teams. The last time a Corvette won Daytona was in 2001 with a C5-R.
Hit the jump to read the press release below
Gallery: Chevrolet Corvette Daytona Prototype
One of America’s most iconic sports car is due for a refresh and now renderings of the new Chevrolet Corvette C7 has hit the Internet thanks to hours of hard work from Jalopnik who got a glimpse of the next generation
They decided to do all of us automotive nuts a favor, whipping up renderings rather than leaking the actual photos – to protect their sources – and confirms that this render is as accurate as it can get with the next-generation ZR1.
Jalopnik also confirms that they’ve showed the renderings around to different sources at GM, all of which have confirmed that it’s an accurate depiction of what we can expect from the Corvette C7. Obviously we’ll be seeing the base model Corvette hitting the market first, but the ZR1 variant is expected to bow sometime shortly.
There is quite a bit going on with the new C7 in terms of styling changes. At first glance it looks as if Chevrolet’s merely updating the Corvette’s look and feel, just as it has every other generation prior. But clearly there’s some Camaro-inspired design cues going on, and who can blame Chevy given how successful the Camaro has become.
Check out the link to Jalopnik below for more Corvette C7 renderings
Lingenfelter Performance Engineering has been hard at work tuning the LS9 found in 2009-2012 Chevrolet Corvettes, and now has three engine packages for those hungry for more horsepower. The first, offers up to 680-hp thanks to a supercharger pulley upgrade, while the remaining two are both supercharger system upgrades, one of which brings power output to 710-hp while the other is a more extreme 750-hp.
The pulley upgrade package is a surprisingly affordable $2,995 (installed) package helping safely increase boost to 12-13 psi from the factory supercharger. The increase isn’t too shabby either, taking the factory figure of 638-hp and 604 lb-ft of torque to 680-hp and 660 lb-ft of torque. As with all other Lingenfelter products, even the pulley upgrade comes complete with pre- and post-install dyno and a 1-year/12,000-mile warranty on added components.
The lesser of the two supercharger upgrades is available at $5,295 with additional upgrades which include Lingenfelter’s Heat Exchanger upgrade, Corsa stainless steel cat-back exhaust and an Akrapovic Titanium Evolution Exhaust. Total power output on this package is 710-hp and 680 lb-ft of torque thanks to the addition of Lingenfelter’s supercharger front cover or snout and air intake system.
Lastly, the most extreme of the three packages gives the ZR1 750-hp and 730 lb-ft of torque in exchange for $12,895 from your bank account. But this isn’t just your typical supercharger upgrade, Lingenfelter adds on their GT9 supercharger camshaft and Lingenfelter CNC ported LS9 cylinder heads. This comes with a 2-year/24,000-mile warranty and can take anywhere from three to four weeks to complete.
So those looking for more power out of their ZR1, head on over to Lingenfelter Performance Engineering to see what they’ve got.
Celebrating 30 years of “Corvettes at Carlisle”, Chevy will show off a special edition Corvette Carlisle Blue Grand Sport Concept sporting a new and unique Carlisle Blue exterior. Contrasting the Carlisle Blue Corvette will be a Torch Red Corvette Z06 Ron Fellows Hall of Fame Tribute vehicle.
The Carlisle Blue Grand Sport Concept features an LS3 6.2L with dry sump oil system, a motor that was hand-built at GM’s Performance Build Center. The power plant is mated to a six-speed manual transmission and features Chevrolet’s Magnetic Selective Ride Control. On the outside, silver-painted Torque 2 wheels contrast the Carlisle Blue exterior while Pearl White full-length racing stripes sets a nice accent. A dual-mode exhaust system goes with a huge collection of Genuine Corvette Accessories. The exterior also features a carbon fiber ground effects kit and full-width rear spoiler while the interior gets ebony floor mats and a racing pedal package.
The custom Z06 set to honor Ron Fellows’ long, distinguished Corvette Racing career features a CFZ carbon fiber package which includes a new splitter and rocker moldings; a carbon fiber raised hood, and black headlamp housings and mirrors. The brake calipers were done in a similar red as the exterior while the ebony interior also received red stitching accents.
Autoguide will be sure to check out these Corvettes and all the Camaros that will surely take SEMA by storm this year.
GALLERY: Corvette Carlisle Blue Grand Sport Concept
GALLERY: Corvette Z06 Ron Fellows Hall of Fame Tribute
An Automotive News article suggests that a re-designed Chevrolet Corvette, known internally as the C7, will bow in 2013. GM design chief Ed Wellburn said that work is ongoing for the new Corvette, and one of the main challenges is designing a car that can appeal to a younger audience while staying faithful to the brand’s heritage.
“Finding that right balance” is a challenge. “You want it to be a new design, but it needs to be recognizable as a Corvette.” Corvette sales are at their lowest levels in nearly 50 years, and GM needs to bring down the average age of the Corvette buyer to help draw in new customers.
[Source: Automotive News]
Former Corvette Racing driver and motorsports icon Ron Fellows recently had the pleasure of being inducted into Corvette’s Hall of Fame. And as if that wasn’t a big enough honor for Fellows, he was also presented with this wicked 2012 Corvette Z06 at the National Corvette Museum’s 17th Annual Labor Day celebration. This particular Chevy Corvette has been dubbed the SEMA/Spring Mountain Special Edition and chances are we’ll be seeing it in action at the Ron Fellows Performance Driving School right outside Las Vegas at Spring Mountain Raceway – not to mention at the upcoming SEMA Show in November.
The special edition 2012 Z06 features a carbon fiber hood and full-body racing stripes. On all four corners are black wheels with a red stripe, borrowed from the Centennial Edition, while the interior features embroidered seats with “100 Years” on them. Displayed prominently on the side of the car is Ron Fellows’ #3 racing number which is complemented by graphics stating “Hall of Fame”. In the rear, the Vette has graphics from Mosport Raceway, which Ron co-owns, plus logos from his own driving school.
[Source: Corvette Blogger]
Check out the video after the jump:
Back in 1980, California Custom Coachworks did a limited run of just five Chevrolet Corvette sedans for customers (a total of six were produced, one of them being a prototype). They took the stock body Corvettes, lengthened them by 30 inches, adding a significant 500-lb weight gain to the body. The result however was a very rare four-door Corvette that featured four seats and a very peculiar design.
We spotted one of these rare sedans up for sale on eBay, claiming it’s one of the few left and that it’s completely original, never been damaged and sports 19,867 miles on the odometer. The owner has also taken it to many shows, collecting first place trophies along the way through each one. It’s a little strange to see a four-door Corvette with our own eyes, never mind one with a $265,500 price tag.
GALLERY: 1980 Four-Door Chevrolet Corvette
We’ve seen a lot of resto-mod projects, but this one may be the finest one yet. Starting with one of the most timeless body styles ever, a 1958 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster, the restoration project involved giving it a new-generation Corvette LT1 powerplant and suspension on a custom frame. The result is a 300-hp classic featuring a pristine body, immaculate leather interior and a rad set of 18-inch Intro wheels that fit the classic design quite well.
The transformation began by un-bolting the car from its frame and having it sodium-blasted to remove all its factory defects, not to mention the wear-and-tear from over 50 years of existence. From there, the entire body was restored to a silky smooth finish prior to being bolted to a custom round tube frame. It then received a custom Spectrum Color-developed turquoise with traditional white coves giving it a classic-car appearance.
Then a custom frame was built to house the new powertrain, featuring a modern Corvette LT1 Generation II 350 motor with a cast-iron block and aluminum heads. The color-matched LT1 plastic engine cover is a subtle but fantastic touch to show off the engine.
On the inside, genuine leather adorns the cabin with a color-matched scheme. Replacing the age-old steering wheel is an aluminum counterpart from Grant while a Lokar transmission shifter takes center stage.
The classic is currently for sale at $119,900 which seems like a bargain given the three years of hard work put into restoring the project and its estimated cost of over $200,000.
GALLERY: World Class Corvette Roadster LT1 700R4 Pro Touring
[Source: RK Motors]
The wrap company out of Czech Republic, Tintek, has been producing chrome vehicles for the Internet to enjoy for quite some time now. New to their collection is a Chevrolet Corvette, and if that wasn’t enough, this Corvette sports a set of vertical doors.
A quick peek at their website reveals that Tintek doesn’t look to be slowing down on the chrome wrap movement either. They’re showing off a new violet chrome variant and even recently did a Bentley GTC in gold chrome. Oh what the hell, who cares about being subtle anyways.
GALLERY: Tintek Chrome Chevrolet Corvette
[Source: GT Spirit]
The Corvette hasn’t been doing too well in sales. So what does GM do? It increases the price for every model.
To be fair, GM’s excuse is that…well, they didn’t give one. Blame the economy, I suppose. But depending on the model, the Corvette will see a price jump of anywhere between $480 to $1,150 for model year 2012s. Trim levels will also cost more, with 2LT Coupe packages rising from $1,195 to $2,095, 3LT from $4,205 to $5,995, and the top-dog 4LT package jumping by as much as $9,495.
This won’t bode well for GM’s intention to target younger audiences with the Corvette. But wait: out of this doom and gloom comes a silver lining—the ZR1 actually gets a lower price, as it’s now $75 cheaper. Better jump on this bargain while it lasts.
GALLERY: 2012 Chevy Corvette
[Source: Corvette Blogger]
Looks like somebody at General Motors got the memo about Corvette owners being aging, denim-swathed lotharios. And to better target the sort of young trendsetters posing in Porsches, Ferraris, and Lamborghinis, GM is planning to give some European substance to the Corvette in the form of a smaller turbo V8.
That somebody is Mark Reuss, by the way—GM’s North American president who stated that the seventh-generation C7 Corvette will be “completely different” than the current model. He helped approve plans for a smaller-displacement, higher-revving V8 that would shake up many of the key characteristics that have defined the Corvette over the years. For example, instead of pushrods and overhead valves the new V8 would be an OHC. Instead of the adage “there’s no replacement for displacement,” the V8′s size would be cut down from 6.0 liters to half that size.
And for the first time in its 60 years, the ‘Vette would get turbo motivation—for a flat torque curve and more usable performance in different driving conditions. In total, the new engine should deliver 400 horsepower minimum, and at a projected 3 liters it would churn out 125 horsepower per liter while revving as far as 10,000 RPM.
With these high-tech powertrain advancements, Reuss wants to “target a very different sort of buyer for the next Corvette. Let’s face it, the current customer is getting old.” Still, the traditional OHV engine will be offered with more engine choices across the board than there are now. And as far as styling goes, it would be kept traditional and draw cues from legendary bygone models. Lastly, the oft-criticized interior will be “world-class,” says Ed Welburn, GM’s global design chief who is personally overseeing its interior redesign.
Now would be a good time to revisit those fun mid-engine rumors that have fueled Corvette concepts since the 80s. What’s next—Porsche captures the displaced, aging baby boomers by giving the next 911 a HEMI engine mounted way up front somewhere? Stranger thing have happened in the automotive world, and enthusiasts have burned down castle gates over less.
[Source: The Detroit Bureau]
Currently for sale by RK Motors, this is far more than just a 1968 Chevrolet Chevelle. True, it might look like a mild restomod, but under that shiny blue body is a 2007 Corvette chassis and a modern LS2 powerplant.
The 6.0L LS2 V8 puts out 400-hp and 400 lb-ft of torque and runs all the factory fuel injection, traction control, cruise control, etc. To make it a show-worthy engine bay, plenty of blue carbon fiber trim pieces were made to look as if they were installed at the factory. In addition, tons of components were polished to a brilliant shine.
For the body, every panel was block sanded to achieve a flawless surface and painted a two-tone blue pearl metallic paint job, essentially a pairing of the LeMans Blue that was available on the ’68 Chevelle and the ’07 Corvette.
And naturally, with the vehicle sporting a Corvette chassis, Corvette 18- and 19-inch wheels are bolted on. In addition, the Z51-spec suspension and brakes are fully intact. The only major aftermarket piece to the entire project is a set of long-tube headers that lead out to a custom dual exhaust.
GALLERY: 1968 Chevrolet Corvelle Convertible
[Source: RK Motors]
Check out video of this stunning restomod after the jump:
Talk about giving your own car the personal touch. Rick Hendrick of Hendrick Motorsports NASCAR fame personally assembled the engine that will go into his own Corvette Z06 Carbon Edition.
Being able to put together the very engine that will power your car is not something you hear about everyday, but thanks to an Engine Build Experience package offered through General Motors, those who order a new Z06 or ZR1 Corvette have the opportunity to do so at the company’s Performance Build Center in Wixom, Michigan. The $5,800 option, which buyers must sign up for, includes lodging, transportation and a concierge service, while in town as well as scheduling the engine build and related activities, but does not include travel to and from the Detroit area.
Even though owners are themselves putting together these engines, once assembled, each of the LS7 and LS9 motors in the program, is still backed by GM’s 5-year 100,000 mile warranty, just like any other. Once the motor has been assembled, a special customized plaque for the owner is mounted next to the engine builder’s name. The motors are then shipped from Wixom, to the Corvette plant in Bowling Green, Kentucky for installation in the cars.
Hendrick is the 13th individual to choose the Engine Build Experience program and remarked, “for me, participating in this engine build is the ultimate connection to my Corvette. This is one of my favorite cars in the world, and now it will be that much more special knowing I personally built the engine. It’s a really unique experience that Chevrolet is offering its customers.”
General Motors is investing $131 million into their Bowling Green, Kentucky factory to help improve the legendary plant that produces the Chevrolet Corvette, but a new car won’t show up for another two model years.
Having made upgrades to the 2012 model, General Motors will focus on re-tooling the plant, while also adding 250 workers to supplement the 400 UAW employees already building America’s sports car. General Motors has remained tight-lipped on details regarding the 7th generation Corvette, but considering how good the current car is, we can’t wait to see what improvements arrive in 2014.
[Source: Kicking Tires]