1953 Chevrolet Corvette C1

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The name Corvette has long been an iconic name and today the 8th generation of this car is in production. In view of this, it may seem strange that in the first years of C1 production, the success of Chevrolet sports car was under a big question. Initially, Americans were not too eager to buy Corvette, but every year the situation changed for the better, and the sports car from Chevrolet already in the first generation acquired serious technical and design changes.

In my opinion, the first generation Chevrolet Corvette has always been special. If in C2, or C3 you can easily notice the evolution up to C7, then C1 in terms of design was quite different from the subsequent cars. It was the Corvette that became America’s first mass-market sports car.

I’m sure since you’ve come to this page, you know about fiberglass bodies. But not everyone knows that a third-party company was involved in the production of bodies for the first generation Corvette. It was Molded Fiber Glass, an Ohio-based boat manufacturer. The sports car itself was assembled in Flint, Michigan.

1953 Chevrolet Corvette C1 price and value.

In 53em to buy a brand new Chevrolet Corvette was possible for 3,500 dollars, which is equivalent to 34,000 today. While the first Corvette rolled off the assembly line on June 30, only 300 cars were produced in all of ’53. During ’54, 3,640 cars were built, 30% of which were unsold and remained at the factory. This large percentage of unsold cars was even with the 21% discount that applied to the ’54 Corvette. It was in this year that the V8 engine was introduced to the Corvette. As you may have heard, this was largely due to the car racer Zora Arkus Dantov.

In ’57, 6,000 cars were built, and 1,000 of them were equipped with a fuel injection system. In the last year for the C1, ’62, 14,000 cars were sold. As you can see, – over the years, the level of sales gradually increased and 69 000 Corvette of the first generation were created for the whole time. The car was constantly improved, became more powerful and received design changes.

1953 Chevrolet Corvette C1 exterior and photos.

As you probably know, this sports car was produced only as a roadster. Originally, the Corvette was not even equipped with door handles, but they appeared in ’56, during the first restyling. There was one headlight on each side, but the taillights and the location of the exhaust pipes were changed – they began to come out through the bumper. As an option, a removable, rigid roof was introduced (by default it was soft).

A second restyling was carried out in ’58. This car is most easily recognized by its twin headlights. Note that in the rear of such a Corvette you can not see the pipes of the exhaust system. All because they go out behind the rear wheels.
The designer of this, iconic car was Harley Earl, who headed GM styling from the 28th to the 58th.
The curb weight of the Chevrolet Corvette C1 with the V8 4.6L engine is 1379kg, which is not much for a V8 car.

Interior and equipment of 1953 Chevrolet Corvette C1.

Before and after the restyling, the interior mirror was mounted on the front panel. But after the restyling, the music system speaker was mounted just behind the mirror. The front panel itself also changed during the second update, – it received a handle in front of the passenger. Radio and clock were installed in the center console. The edges of the side windows had metal covers, and rounded, windshield became a special feature of the first Corvette. These sports cars were equipped with lumbar-type seat belts with two anchor points.

In racing fashion, the steering wheel spokes have round holes. After the ’58 update, the luggage compartment was increased by 20%. The Corvette became more practical.

1953 Chevrolet Corvette C1 – Engine and Specifications.

Initially, the base engine for the Corvette was an inline six with a displacement of 3.9 liters and an output of 152 hp. This engine could be mated to a two-speed automatic transmission. It was the gearbox that was criticized at the time. But even with it, the Corvette was capable of accelerating to 60 mph in 11sec and the quarter mile in 17.9sec.

In ’55, the Corvette C1 received a new three-speed manual. At the same time, a 4.3-liter V8 appeared under the hood. In ’56, the power of this engine was increased to 225 hp. There was also a package – PRO 449, which included the installation of two, four-chamber carburetors.
In ’57, the 4.6L engine received an injector fuel injection system. The Corvette was able to accelerate to 60 miles in just 6 seconds, which is a good performance even today.

In ’62, instead of the 4.6 engine, the Corvette was fitted with a 5.4L engine. Together with a four-chamber carburetor, this engine produced 250 horsepower. In the L75 modification this engine produces 300 horsepower, in the L76 – 340, and in the L84 – 360 horsepower and 477H.M of torque. With the latter motor, the Corvette C1 could accelerate to 60 miles in 5.8sec and cover the quarter mile in 14sec.
The front suspension was independent coil-spring, with a split axle and four leaf springs in the rear.

This is an iconic car, which despite poor sales in the early days, gained a reputation and love amongst many fans around the world.

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