If I was the gentleman behind the wheel of this final-year C1, I might be tempted to take my sweet time in getting to the office. Granted, he looks just a bit more successful and established than me (just a little), so with those qualities probably comes a little more freedom in terms of business hours. Regardless, I can imagine there’s absolutely no comparison in comfort, whatsoever, between a generic, multi-adjustable, bonded leather-faced, ergonomically-correct, executive office chair and the pilot’s seat of this classic Corvette. Give me that low-back Corvette bucket seat all the live-long day. When I look at this car, I’m suddenly George Maharis playing Buz Murdock on “Route 66” – off on my next great adventure to anywhere but a corporate office.
Nineteen sixty-two brought the the high water mark, up to that point, for Corvette sales, with just over 14,500 sold – representing a whopping one-third jump over the ’61 total. All were powered by a Chevy small-block V8 newly bored out to 327 cubic inches, ranging in power from the standard, 250-hp version to the fuel injected 360-horse mill. A three-speed manual transmission was standard, with a two-speed Powerglide (nooo!) and a four-speed manual as options. Curb weight started at around 3,000 pounds. A fuel-injected, four-speed model would have been good for 0-60 in the upper five-second range – extraordinarily quick.
To me, the ducktailed rear restyle of the ’61 just looks so organic, so perfect, so natural that sometimes it’s easy to forget about the first and second rear-deck treatments that had preceded it. That this basic rear styling was successfully adapted to (from?) the radical, new ’63 Stingray speaks to its correctness of form. It’s kind of like when Madonna had chopped and bleached her hair for her “True Blue” phase of the mid-80’s for a look that was so different than before, but so very right you almost forgot what she looked like a couple of years prior. Actually, this ’62 ‘Vette is probably more like Marilyn Monroe who passed away that August – gorgeous, all curves, and still America’s sweetheart.
Downtown, The Loop, Chicago, Illinois.
Wednesday, June 14, 2017.
- Whoops! Paul N. already beat me to the Marilyn metaphor: Curbside Classic: 1962 Corvette – The Marilyn Monroe Of Cars (NSFW-USA only); and
- Another, great Cohort sighting: Cohort Sighting: 1958 Corvette On 14th Street In NYC