Chevrolet Corvette C1 283/270 Convertible

Car producer : 

Chevrolet

Model:

Corvette C1 283/270 Convertible

Year:

1957-1962

Type:

Roadster



The first generation Corvette was introduced late in the 1953 model year. Originally designed as a show car for the 1953 Motorama display at the New York Auto Show, it generated enough interest to induce GM to make a production version to sell to the public. First production was on June 30, 1953.

This generation was often referred to as the "solid-axle" models (the independent rear suspension was not introduced until the second generation). 300 hand-built polo white Corvette convertibles were produced for the 1953 model year.

The 1954 model year vehicles could be ordered in Pennant Blue, Sportsman Red and Black, or Polo White. 3,640 were built, and sold slowly.

The 1955 model offered a 265 cu in (4.34 L) V8 engine as an option. With a large inventory of unsold 1954 models, GM limited production to 700 for 1955. With the V8, 0-60 mph time improved to 8.5 seconds.

A new body was introduced for the 1956 model featuring a new "face" and side coves; the taillamp fins were also gone. An optional fuel injection system was made available in the middle of the 1957 model year. It was one of the first mass-produced engines in history to reach 1 bhp (0.75 kW) per cubic inch (16.4 cubic cm) and Chevrolet's advertising agency used a "one hp per cubic inch" slogan for advertising the 283 bhp (211 kW) 283 cu in (4.64 L) Small-Block engine. Other options included power windows (1956), hydraulically operated power convertible top (1956), heavy duty brakes and suspension (1957), and four speed manual transmission (late 1957). Delco Radio transistorized signal-seeking "hybrid" car radio, which used both vacuum tubes and transistors in its radio's circuitry (1956 option).

The 1958 Corvette received a body and interior freshening which included a longer front end with quad headlamps, bumper exiting exhaust tips, a new steering wheel, and a dashboard with all gauges mounted directly in front of the driver. Exclusive to the 1958 model were hood louvers and twin trunk spears. The 1959–60 model years had few changes except a decreased amount of body chrome and more powerful engine offerings. By 1960, the Corvette had evolved from the wheezy six-cylinder grand tourer of 1953 into a true sports car of which the entire world could be proud. Whilst the styling was pure 1950s American, with large chrome bumpers, a two-tone paint treatment divided by body-side “coves”, quad headlamps, and a toothy grille, the chassis underneath adopted the best European racing practices. The car also had sway bars and an aluminium clutch, and amongst the ranks of the strong V-8 engines available was a 283-cubic inch mill, which, when equipped with dual Carter carburettors, produced 270 horsepower.

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