To be OFFERED AT AUCTION at Auctions America’s Fort Lauderdale event, April 1-3, 2016.
Chassis No. 194376S102264
Estimate: $120,000 - $140,000 US
Thanks to the introduction of the Shelby 427 Cobra and further aided by being many pounds lighter, the Cobra continued its dominance on the racetrack; apart from the short-term Corvette Grand Sport adventure. Chevrolet engineers were forced to counter with a 427 of their own by enlarging the Corvette’s 396-cid V-8. The big-block engine was noted by the appropriate bulge in the hood. Performance was astounding: 0- to 60-mph in 4.8 seconds, 0- to 100-mph in 11.2 seconds, 12.8 second 1/4-mile and a 152-mph top speed. Ads in the period publications proudly announced, “With 427 cubic inches, who needs adjectives.”
Chevrolet produced a then-record 27,720 Corvettes, including 17,762 convertibles and 9,958 Sting Ray coupes (like this car) with a base price of $4,295 for the coupe version before options. The convertible was listed as $4,084. The Turbo-Jet 427 added a $312.85 to the bottom line. The extra cost for the L72 was justified as it included four-bolt mains, impact extruded aluminum pistons, a very aggressive camshaft, and a Holley 780-cfm carburetor mated to an aluminum intake and a free-flowing exhaust. The K66 transistorized ignition was a mandatory option with the L72, too, of which 5,528 buyers opted for the extra performance of the L72 engine.
This particular car is stated to be one of the “early production 450 horsepower models” versus the later rating of 425-hp. It is reported that at the estimated date of the third week of October, or approximately when serial number 3,000 went down the assembly line, the initial 450-hp and 400-hp ratings were lowered to 425 and 390 by edict from General Motors management due to rumored political reasons inside and outside the company. It is also shared that some of the air cleaner decals received the 450-hp markings, while others, such as this car, even in the earlier run dates still received the 425-hp air cleaner decal. The 450 horsepower engine is recognized as being the same unit as the 425 version; the lower figures are said to have been obtained by using a lower rpm rating.
This Corvette received a restoration in 2003 to show-quality standards and has been well-cared-for and driven sparingly since. The L72 car is finished in Nassau Blue, paint code 976, and also has a blue interior. The car comes with a comprehensive restoration and historical file; plus it is a National Council of Corvette Clubs first place winner in 2003 at Carlisle, Pennsylvania, and it was featured in the November 2015 edition of Corvette Enthusiast. Along with the legendary powerplant, this Corvette features an M22 four-speed manual transmission, a Posi-traction rear end with 4.10:1 gearing with large U-joint retainers, power windows, power antenna, tinted glass, AM/FM radio; correct 80-pound oil pressure gauge, tach and 160-mph speedometer. Among the additions are N.O.S. side exhausts, leather interior, goldline tires and correct reproduction knock-off wheels. Flight 427; now departing through gates 1, 2, 3 and 4. 1966 Chevrolet Corvette 427/450 Coupe