Owning a Corvette is a dream for millions of people all over the world. But if you have never owned one before how do you even start looking? I will let you in on some of the secrets of buying a Corvette and some of the misconceptions many people have when looking.
1. The best time to buy a Corvette is… any time
Many people will tell you that the best time of year to buy a Corvette is in the Fall or Winter because prices come down as the bad weather begins. At one time in the past, this may have been true. But with the Internet and worldwide sales, I do not notice any great difference in either prices or availability based on certain seasons. The web has taken the Corvette market from what was a US only market to an international market with Corvettes being sold in almost every country.
2. Don’t limit yourself to only original corvettes.
Many owners who modify their Corvettes do it to make them do what the Chevy engineers may have avoided. Even Corvettes are compromised for certain areas like smooth driving, good gas mileage, and a fixed amount of options. Some owners auto cross theirs; others enjoy an occasional trip to the drag races, while others may choose to personalize theirs with custom wheels and tires.
These actions do not make them less valuable or more valuable either. It all comes down to the buyer’s preferences. However, be wary of modifications that might make the cars non-street legal or difficult for everyday use.
Check out this beautiful 1977 Corvette L82 with side pipes that just arrived!
3. Not all Corvettes have high maintenance costs.
There is a stigma that Corvettes have a high maintenance cost, but in reality, any car can have high maintenance costs if it has problem areas. Sometimes these problems aren’t always obvious when you look at a Corvette for the first time. When you are buying a classic Corvette, be sure to inspect it thoroughly.
4. Corvettes from warmer climates are not always in better condition.
Up here in Central Pennsylvania, the winters are horrible. Snow, cold temperatures, and salt on the roads exist from November till April. So most Corvette owners up here park them or store them away until nice weather returns in the spring, wherein other parts of the country they are driven year round and usually end up with higher miles and more rust from the humidity. Their exteriors, interiors, and other components are protected half the year resulting in reduced wear for their years. And most of these Corvette owners do not even drive them in the rain!
5. Be prepared to walk away from a Corvette
Just like buying any car you have to be prepared to walk away if the Corvette does not meet your standards. Contrary to popular belief, not all classic Corvettes are a great deal. Finding the right Corvette takes time and patience. Make sure you have the knowledge to look at the car for more than paint and interior defects. All too often I find Vettes with cheap shiny paint jobs and cheap new interiors with rusted out frames/floors or major mechanical issues that people bought because of the cosmetics instead of the overall quality of the Corvette. I personally spend most of my time looking under the Corvettes and under the hoods and less time worrying about minor cosmetic things that can easily be fixed.
6. Low mileage Corvettes are not always the better choice.
When choosing between two similar Corvettes this may make sense. But you may discover that many owners of higher mileage Corvettes perform proper maintenance on a scheduled basis versus owners of low mileage ones. This prudent action allows their higher mileage Corvettes to exceed 150,000 miles or more without any major expenses. Some lower mileage Corvettes owners may desire to keep them as original as possible which is great for national car shows where you run it on and off the trailer at the event, but for daily driving or even long distance driving is not safe to have 40 year old tires, belts & hoses, and other suspension pieces that could leave you sitting alongside the road or worse.
We have some real beauties with high mileage that are in incredible shape for a reasonable price.
Numbers matching, L48/350, rare 4spd transmission, 80,000 miles on the dash, dark blue paint, dark blue leather interior, power antenna, AM/FM/Cassette player, power steering, power
350 engine, automatic transmission, black leather interior, power steering, power brakes, power windows, power driver side seat, AM/FM/CD player, A/C, hatch back window and much
350 Crate engine, four speed manual transmission, 31,000 original miles, red leather interior, AM/FM/CD radio, painted T-tops, power steering, power brakes, A/C, power windows, rally
Numbers matching, 4spd, 12,747 miles on dash, nice black interior, power steering, black convertible top, red hard top, factory side exhaust, rally wheels, AM/FM/CD player,
Numbers matching block goes with the car, currently running a 383/450Hp, (title is exempt for mileage), M21 close ratio four speed manual transmission, black interior,
Numbers matching, L48/350 engine, 85,000 original miles, dark red leather interior, automatic tramsmission, power steering, power brakes, power windows, tilt and tele steering column, rally
Numbers matching, L48/350, four speed manual transmission, 77,000 original miles, rally wheels, black leather interior, Hurst shifter, factory side exhaust with chambered pipes, power steering,
My mechanics toy is now up for sale. 388 Stroker Motor, automatic transmission, tubbed, 4 inch cowl hood, 1998 grill and bumper, AM/FM/CD radio, This