Is the '67 Sting Ray the best of the second-generation Corvettes? And is Lynn Haas' Rallye Red convertible the best of the bunch?
For years, savvy car shoppers knew that the best time of the year to order a car with their choice of options was in the springtime. By then, the reasoning went, the assembly plants had solved any problems with that year's models, and the cars coming off the assembly lines then were likely the best built of the model year.
Now, combine that line of reasoning with the '67 Vette. Any glitches that Chevrolet may have encountered in building the second generation of America's Only True Sports Car since its production began in September of 1962 were likely solved before the executive decision to extend the C2's production run into 1967. That came while Chevy worked to solve some pre-production glitches that cropped up with the third-generation Corvette, which had been originally scheduled to start production in the fall of 1966.
Add to all that the fact that Lynn's Midyear was likely a springtime build, and you have a Corvette that, in the eyes of more than a few Vette lovers, was as close to perfect as you could get. "I think it's a March car," he says, which would put it among the 2,500 or so C2s that rolled out of St. Louis Assembly that month.
And that was before Lynn's '67 received a restoration that turned the clock on this car back to the spring of 1967. Back then, if you were to venture into your local Chevy dealer-especially one that sold plenty of Corvettes, and had at least one sitting on its showroom floor-you could order one just like this. All you had to do was choose the same regular-production options (RPOs) that this car's original owner did, which included the L79 350hp 327 V-8 for $105.35, M20 Muncie four-speed manual transmission for $184.35, G81 Positraction for $42.15, C07 auxiliary hard top for $231.75, C08 black vinyl covering for the C07 top at $52.70, N40 power steering for $94.80, U69 AM/FM radio for $172.75, and QB1 7.75-15 Redline tires for $46.65.
Add those to the Sting Ray convertible's $4,240.75 base price and you'd wind up with a Sting Ray that would sticker around $5,130 before tax, title, and license fees. (Needless to say, '67 Sting Ray prices have been well above that for a long time!)
Lynn has had this Midyear for about four years, complete with its original engine, original damage-free body, and all the documentation going back to when the original owner ordered it. We saw it at an NCRS regional meet in Kissimmee, Florida. There, it earned Top Flight-again. "It's been Top Flighted before, and it's been [Bloomington] Gold before," says Lynn, who added when we spoke with him, "it's also going up to Bloomington to go for another Gold. And it'll get it, too."
What's it like to drive? "It's like it was in '67, that good," says Lynn.
Data File: '67 Chevrolet Corvette Sting Ray Convertible
Owned by: Lynn Haas, Ft. Myers, Florida
Original production '67 Sting Ray convertible body with RPO C07 auxiliary hard top (and RPO C08 black vinyl covering)
Paint: Rally Red acrylic lacquer
Restored production '67 Sting Ray with original frame
Suspension: Restored production '67 Sting Ray four-wheel independent suspension: coil springs with upper/lower A-arms, anti-sway bar, and tubular GM/Delco shock absorbers (front), independent suspension with lateral struts, radius rods, transverse leaf spring bundle, and tubular GM/Delco shock absorbers (rear)
Steering: Restored GM/Saginaw recirculating ball, power-assisted
Brakes: Restored GM Delco four-wheel disc brakes, manual
Wheels: Standard '67 Sting Ray Rally wheels, 14x5 1/2 with '67-style center caps and trim rings
Tires: Reproduction Firestone Super Sports bias-ply, 7.75-15 Redline
Restored original RPO L79 small-block V-8, block casting number 3892657HT
Displacement: 327 cubic inches
Compression ratio: 11.0:1
Cylinder heads: Restored production RPO L79 cast iron, casting number 3890462
Ignition: Restored production GM/Delco-Remy breaker-points-style
Induction: Restored production '67 Sting Ray RPO L79: one Holley R3810A four-barrel carburetor on cast-iron intake manifold with open-element air cleaner
Camshaft: Production RPO L79 with solid lifters
Exhaust: Restored production '67 Sting Ray with 2.5-inch diameter under-car exhaust system
Cooling: Restored production GM/Harrison aluminum cross-flow radiator
Horsepower: 350 @ 5,800 rpm (advertised)
Torque: 360 lb-ft @ 3,600 rpm (advertised)
Restored RPO M20 Muncie four-speed manual with restored original shifter (with reverse lock-out)
Rearend: Restored '67 Sting Ray with RPO G81 Positraction and 3.55:1 gears
Restored Production '67 Sting Ray
Seats: Restored production '67 Sting Ray with red vinyl covers
Carpets: Reproduction '67 Sting Ray red nylon loop-pile
Instrumentation: Restored production '67 Sting Ray (0-160-mph speedometer, 0-7,000 tachometer with 6,000-rpm redline, plus battery, fuel level, oil pressure, and coolant temperature gauges in dash and analog clock in center dash stack)
Sound system: Restored production GM/Delco AM/FM, RPO U69, with single dash-mounted speaker
Heater: Restored production GM/Harrison heater/defroster
A/C: 3,788 '67 Sting Rays were built with RPO C60 GM/Harrison air conditioning. This isn't one of them