1962 Chevrolet Corvette
- Year of manufacture1962
- Car typeOther
- Lot number124
- Exterior colourOther
Ray Bowyer, Covina, California (acquired by 1970)
Chris Wickersham, Pasadena, California (acquired from the estate of the above in 2004)
Current Owner (acquired from the above in 2005)
The Bonding Strip, vol. 33, no. 3, August 2013, cover feature “The ’62 Tanker”
NCRS Regional, Joplin, Missouri, April 2011 (Top Flight)
National Corvette Certification Board, St. Charles, Illinois, June 2011 (Gold Certified)
NCRS Regional, Sacramento, October 2011 (Performance Verification)
Greystone Mansion Concours d’Elegance, May 2012 (Best in Class)
NCRS National, San Diego, July 2012 (Top Flight and Duntov Mark of Excellence)
Petersen Automotive Museum, 60th Anniversary Corvette Celebration, March 2013
AACA Western Spring Meet, Palm Springs, California, March 2017 (First Junior)
For 1962, the final year of the solid-axle Corvette, Chevrolet offered high-performance options described in factory literature as “special equipment for sports car meets.” The most popular of these was the fuel-injected 327/360 engine, which found its way into 1,918 Corvettes. A mere 246 Corvettes were ordered with heavy-duty chassis equipment (RPO 687), which included fast-ratio steering, heavy-duty shock absorbers, and large sintered-metallic drum brakes with cooling fins, vented backing plates, and air scoops. Even scarcer was the extra-large 24-gallon fuel tank (RPO 488). In all, just 65 “tanker” Corvettes were built for the 1962 model year.
Completed on December 12, 1961, this Corvette possesses all three ultra-desirable options, as well as a close-ratio gearbox, Posi-Traction rear axle, 4.11:1 final drive ratio, and 5 1/2”-wide wheels required for the large brake drums. Originally finished in Sateen Silver with black upholstery, this car was further equipped with a Wonderbar radio and a hardtop.
It is understood that this car has always resided in the Los Angeles area. By 1970, the Corvette was acquired by Ray Bowyer of Covina, California; it remained in his family’s ownership until 2004, when Chris Wickersham of Pasadena, California, bought it. In 2005, Mr. Wickersham sold the unrestored tanker to the current owner, a discerning Corvette collector. He decided to return the Corvette to its original splendor and commissioned model expert Jeff Reade of American Motoring Memories in Culver City, California, to restore the car. Once disassembled, the Corvette was found to be in excellent order, complete with its matching-numbers engine, special brakes, large-capacity fuel tank, and other important features.
Since its debut at the April 2011 NCRS Regional, this Corvette has captured important honors including two NCRS Top Flight awards and the prestigious Duntov Mark of Excellence, the club’s highest award. In addition to being Gold Certified, the tanker has earned an AACA First Junior prize, a Best in Class award at the Greystone Mansion Concours d’Elegance, and was selected to represent the 1962 model at the Petersen Automotive Museum’s exhibit celebrating the Corvette’s 60th anniversary. Carefully maintained and presented in exceptional condition, this Corvette is offered with its original California black plates, an original jack, hardtop wrench, and glove box paperwork. Also included is a documentation file that includes restoration photos and receipts, a list of important identification numbers, award certificates, and literature.
With as few as 30 fuel-injected, big-brake tankers built for 1962 – and far fewer surviving today – the appearance of this car at auction represents a unique opportunity to acquire what is likely the finest example of an extremely rare breed of factory-built competition Corvettes.