When Chevrolet introduced the Corvette in 1953, hardcore motorsport enthusiasts rejoiced at the idea of a home-grown sports car. But soon, the Corvette became somewhat compromised as GM prioritized style over outright performance to boost sales. Even as sales struggled and GM threatened to pull the plug on the program, plans for a more focused, purposeful Corvette began as early as 1957. It took considerable effort by a passionate team of engineers led by Zora Arkus-Duntov to convince the GM board to allow the program to continue, but thankfully for petrolheads, the Corvette received a stay of execution.
In 1963, Chevrolet introduced a completely new second-generation Corvette. Essential elements of the experimental Q-Corvette and Sting Ray dream car combined to form the most sophisticated and stylish Corvette yet. Duntov and his team revolutionized the Corvette, ditching its family sedan underpinnings once and for all and finally giving GM a proper, no-excuses sports car to take on the Europeans. The new purpose-built chassis featured four-wheel independent suspension, big drum brakes (discs followed soon after), and various iterations of the 327 cubic-inch small-block V8 ranging from the 250 horsepower base engine to an impressive 360 horsepower version with the optional L-84 package, comprised of a Duntov camshaft, solid lifters, and Rochester Ram Jet mechanical fuel injection. Atop the advanced chassis sat a stunning new body designed by the great Larry Shinoda under the direction of GM design boss Bill Mitchell. The design set the automotive world alight with its gorgeous boat-tail fastback roofline, split rear window, pronounced fender bulges, and an aggressive, purposeful stance. The C2 Corvette remains one of the most iconic and beloved American car designs.
This highly desirable 1963 Corvette Split Window Coupe is one of 2,610 cars equipped with the high-performance, fuel-injected L-84 engine. It is a well-documented car that remained in the care of its first owner from 1963 to 2005. Finished in its original colors of Riverside Red over Red upholstery, it is well-preserved, having had light restoration work done over the years, and is presented in its original specification with its numbers-matching engine. It includes many original documents, including the window sticker, purchase agreement, warranty card, etc.
Documentation shows this car was built in GM’s St. Louis plant and delivered to Benz Chevrolet Inc. in Lake Worth, Florida. The window sticker confirms this as one of the 2,610 cars fitted with the 360 horsepower L-84 and also features a posi-traction rear diff with 4.11 gearing, metallic brakes, and a signal-seeking radio. Mr. R. J. Boozer of West Palm Beach, FL, shelled out the $5,227.40 required to take this very special Corvette home, and he clearly appreciated his new Corvette, as he kept it for the next 42 years. In 2005, it changed hands to its second owner, who held it for the next 13 years.
The car is offered in excellent condition, exhibiting a well-preserved and pleasing character. It has had a respray in the original shade of Riverside Red and is authentically detailed with correct badges, body fittings, and trim. Body fit is excellent, and the finish quality is quite good overall, with a glossy finish and a few minor imperfections consistent with age and use. Rolling stock consists of correct steel wheels with 6.70-15 Firestone Deluxe Champion whitewall tires and spinner-style wheel covers. As with the bodywork, the interior is in its original specifications with correct red vinyl upholstery, red carpets, and proper fittings, including the three-spoke steering wheel, t-handle four-speed shifter with black gearknob, and Delco signal-seek radio. The soft trim and interior fittings are in excellent condition throughout the cockpit.
Under the hood sits the original, numbers-matching 327 cubic-inch small-block V8 with Rochester fuel injection. The tidy engine bay is authentically detailed, honest, and accurate to the period. It runs and drives well, and with 360 horsepower on tap, a factory 4.11 limited-slip rear differential, and a T-10 gearbox, punchy performance off the line and instant acceleration in all four gears are assured.
The Spit Window Fuelie represents the ultimate Corvette for many enthusiasts and collectors, combining rarity, beauty, and uncompromised performance, and no collection of iconic sports cars is complete without one.
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