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1996 Chevrolet LT4 Corvette Grand Sport - Power Paradigm

Not Too Many '96 Callaway Grand Sports Making More Than 450 Horses Are On The Street

Kevin Shaw Dec 1, 2005
Corp_0512_01_z 1996_chevrolet_lt4_corvette_grand_sport Blue_driver_side_front_view 2/1

When is enough enough? It's hard to recognize it until it's too late. But in the case of taking an already factory-original '96 Grand Sport and turning it into a Supernatural Callaway 450 with the Aero modified body kit, it's never too late-it's just right.

Randy Flock, from East Greenwich, Rhode Island, fell in love with the production LT4 Grand Sport at first sight in the summer of 1995 at the Black Hills Corvette Classic show. There, some of GM's designers decided to show off the latest incarnation of Corvette's exceptional performance with the Grand Sport, new for the '96 model year. Randy and his wife, Judy, knew that sooner or later they'd make one of those blue-and-white Grand Sports theirs.

The next year, the Flocks heard that a local dealership had a '96 GS on the lot, and Randy confirmed it was a Grand Sport with the signature red interior highlights and 330 horses. They went to the dealership and signed the paperwork within minutes. Over the next few months, the Grand Sport was whisked off to the Callaway plant in Old Lyme, Connecticut, where it received the Supernatural 450 treatment, but without the body-kit modifications that could extract some of the Grand Sport's unique style.

The throbbing 450-plus horsepower on the street was an eye-opener for Randy. Concerned he might have made a mistake altering his prized Grand Sport, the sticky black streaks of rubber trailing behind the coupe quickly blasted his doubts out of the water. The Callaway mods to the LT4 thrust the powerband into the atmosphere, as the engine was pulled from the car and rebuilt from the ground up. The Callaway alterations were tailored to retain some of the originality of the GS cosmetic modifications to the standard LT1, making the LT4 stand out. The red fuel-rail covers were kept, but were signed by Reeves Callaway, a nice touch from him to the Flocks.

By the summer of 1999, Randy felt it was time to up the performance of the Callaway GS. It wouldn't be an engine modification, but rather the addition of the signature Callaway Aero body kit. The kit offers significant aerodynamic improvements and superior cold-air induction, while side vents provide hot-air ventilation from the engine compartment. The only question in Randy's mind was whether the end result would retain the Grand Sport's signature appearance.

When the Callaway came back with the new body kit, Randy couldn't have been more pleased. The distinguishing front fascia design, unique to the Callaway cars, worked perfectly with the GS paint scheme, the white line slicing through the slits in the grille. Ultimately, the Grand Sport Supernatural Callaway Corvette turned out to be the only known aero-bodied C4 Grand Sport LT4 in existence, making the Flocks' Corvette a true one of one.

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