Q: Hey Greg, given we haven’t created about Corvettes in a while I’ll chuck a tough one your way. If we could possess usually one Corvette from a classical years, what would we pick? Also, we know a new Corvettes are great, so how about a word on those, too? Thanks much.
— John K., New England
A: Well John, that’s one approach to get me going. So, if we had to collect usually one Corvette from a classics, it would have to be a 1967 L88 Corvette, of that usually 20 were ever built that year. The low prolongation array came since a L88 was built for racing, and each one of a 20 had a imperative radio and heater undo and was promoted by Chevy for off-road use. However, all L88s would pass state inspection.
L88s were intentionally listed during usually 430 horsepower, 5 reduction than a 435-horse L71 427 Tri-Power that cost $437.10. There was also an L89 aluminum conduct L71 option, that combined another $368.65 to a option. Both L71 and L89 were 435-horse, 11 to 1 application 427 large retard with 3 Rochester dual tub carburetors. Additionally, in 1967 we could sequence a Tri-Power 427 for usually $326 more, producing 400 horsepower interjection to a reduce application 10.25 to 1 pattern and hydraulic lifters.
The best offering large retard in ’67 was a L71, with 3,754 sold. Only 16 other buyers spent a combined monies for a L89 aluminum heads, that didn’t boost horsepower though being 80 pounds lighter, softened weight ratios front to behind for improved doing and also delivered a bit improved in acceleration. (Not much, usually a bit).
The L88 “off-road” choice cost $947.90 and featured a 12.5 to 1 application 427 with improved respirating aluminum heads (rectangular ports), high lift plain lifter cam, special 2.19 intake and 1.88 empty valves, brawny valve springs and special L88 “dimple” 7/16 shaft steel rods that connected to a best fake steel crankshaft Chevy offered. It was surfaced with an 850-cfm Holley carburetor on an aluminum intake and put out closer to 570 horsepower than a advertised 430.
If we favourite to journey with your L88 in town, a hint plugs would tainted fast and since of a plain lifter cam, environment a valves became a required unchanging chore. Additionally, we had to run during slightest 103 octane fuel, that even behind afterwards was not accessible during each gas station.
Thus, if we had an L88, we were many expected a critical automobile collector, drag or highway racer, though for certain not a daily cruiser around town. Those who took caring of their L88s, as many did, now possess on one of a many renouned and costly classical cars of all time, value approach some-more than any 426 Hemi or Mustang Shelby 500 ever built.
Considering a Corvette in ’67 sole 8,504 coupes and 14,436 convertibles for a sum of 22,940 units, that “only 20 L88s were ever built” judgment becomes even some-more noteworthy. As for performance, with a 4:56 discretionary behind gears, a bone batch L88 was an easy 11-second entertain mile performer with some slicks and a set of headers.
In 1968 Chevy introduced a C3 third-generation array Corvette Stingray, featuring a some-more aerodynamic pattern that many fans primarily didn’t like. (I was one of them). But Corvettes have a approach of flourishing on you, and after a few years everybody favourite it or supposed a style. As for a L88, it was accessible in 1968 and a final year in 1969, with identical engine specs. The final L88 prolongation numbers for a 1968 and 1969 L88s were 80 and 116, respectively, for a grand sum of usually 216 ever produced.
Believe it or not, a consumer could sequence a few options if he checked off a L88 on a sequence list. Offered were energy windows, removable hardtop, leather seats, coloured glass, speedometer “speed minder” (yea, right), those shrill side pipes, engine retard heater, behind window defogger, headrests, tilt-telescopic steering and afterwards in 1969, a improved squeeze that came with a customary M22 “rock crusher” 4 speeds. Similar to a radio and heater delete, energy robbing atmosphere conditioning and energy steering were not available.
So John, a ’67 Corvette L88 (coupe or automobile with a coupe preference) would be my Corvette classical automobile selection, certainly not a warn to any genuine Corvette lover. Honorable mentions go to a ’67 Coupe L89, ’63 separate window with fuel injection or a ’69 Coupe L71/L89, a latter that we walked divided from in 1974 during a fuel crisis. we could have had it for $5,500 during Stoudt Corvettes in Reading, Pennsylvania. (Now, I’m hurting!)
As for a complicated era, we was recently a member on a doubt and answer row during a automobile uncover and we were asked by an fan “what is a best buy in a stream flesh automobile market?” Several on a row pronounced a Dodge Challenger Demon/Hellcat series, though my choice is a entrance level, code new 2019 Corvette, a 460-horsepower beauty that goes for $55,495. It is dollar for dollar a comprehensive best buy out there. So, with this in mind, I’d substantially select a new 2019 Corvette, though I’d substantially go for one of a 500-plus horsepower Z06 models usually for fun. I’d also opt for a 8-speed involuntary these days, as they are quicker than a 7-speed manuals.
Thanks for your minute and maybe one day I’ll possess a Corvette … though not a multi-million dollar L88. They are approach out of my stream “size of wallet” squeeze capabilities.
Way, approach out.
— Greg Zyla writes weekly for More Content Now and GateHouse Media.