Chevrolet Corvette 1963-2008 market review

By: Cliff Chambers, Unique Cars magazine

Presented by

corvette c5 2002 6 1 Plenty of performance is packed under those curvy panels of a C5 corvette c5 2002 6 1

More often than not, the name has been attached to some very sexy cars. And they're often affordable.

 

Chevrolet Corvette 1963-82

Can a two-seat fibreglass sports car with barely enough luggage space for a lunchbox be considered a muscle car? Go drive one and that question answers itself.

Even 5.3-litre versions will get the blood pumping and spending extra on a 427 with raucous side pipes will curdle it. Pre-1968 Corvettes were once scarce in Australia, however improved availability has been accompanied by big price rises.

Early C3 Corvettes with chrome bumpers can cost 50 percent more than post-1974 models of similar quality but with ‘glass bars.

The earlier cars’ power advantage is a factor and they were also available as full convertibles but only came with a ‘targa’ top from ‘74.

Model Year Value Recorded sales
Corvette 1963-67 $90,300 [15]
Corvette 1968-73 $45,050 [32]
Corvette Big Block 1968-73 $68,490 [6]
Corvette 1974-78 $29,975 [20]
Corvette 1979-82 $31,450 [22]

 

Chevrolet Corvette C4 1984-1996

Despite being conservative in appearance, the C4 series Corvette delivered sufficient sales (20-25,000 annually) to keep the name alive.

Once these cars became cheap on the US used market, plenty started being imported into Australia, so we are very well supplied with 1980s models.

Pre-1987 cars can now avoid mandatory RHD conversion and should sell in LHD form for less than $20,000.

Post-1987 models with six-speed manual transmission still need to be RHD in some states but cars already here and converted aren’t expensive.

Even 1993-96 models rarely reach $50,000.

The ZR-1 is a milestone model but American collectors don’t seem keen and excellent cars there sell for US$20-25,000.

Model Year Value Recorded sales
Corvette 1984-87 $21,875 [30]
Corvette 1988-91 $27,090 [20]
Corvette ZR-1 1990-94 $66,500 [3]
Corvette 1992-96 $41,630 [10]

 

Chevrolet Corvette C5-C6 1997-2008 market review

Sleeker, sweeter and faster than earlier cars, the C5 and C6 Corvettes are costly to RHD convert but look like holding their values, at least until the new C7 becomes available in quantity.

For most people looking at their first Corvette, a C5 will do everything they want and good cars start below $60,000.

Basic Z51 versions of the C6 came with 6.0-litre V8s and 300kW but from 2006 the 7.0-litre, dry-sumped Z06 made with an extra 76kW.

US values for low-mileage C6s have dipped to around US$20,000 and even when taxes, freight and RHD conversion costs are added, that saving should push local pricing below $100,000 once new stock arrives.

Model Year Value Recorded sales
Chevrolet Corvette 1998-01 $63,760 [14]
Corvette 2005-08 $104,750 [6]
Corvette Z-06 2006-08 $112,330 [6]

 

Values from 2015-16. Concours cars will fetch a premium.

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